5 Tips to Improve Communication on the Manufacturing Floor



Do you feel like your team members aren't engaged with their work? Are you seeing productivity slip as a result? Look around!

One of the key factors in response to every business challenge is the correct usage of visual communication inside and outside the company. Poor communication can lead to the wrong manufacturing process, delayed orders, customer complaints, accidents, missing information for shift changes, and employee turnover. If your organization is affected by any of these examples, improved internal communication might be the key to getting things running smoothly again. It’s time to not only maximize productivity but also improve communication across your organization!

Examine the Existing Workflow

Start by identifying pain points in your current workflow. Analyze the people and their motivation, the production process, procedures, technology used, communication tools, and resources available across the company.

Learn to recognize your own communication gaps and research possible solutions. Consider using value mapping as an effective solution for identifying and monitoring projects for process improvement—this strategy enables managers to pinpoint issues and record how changes impact the overall system.


Update the Communication Process

A manager should actively evaluate which communication channel (in-person, telephone, email, written letter, etc.) is appropriate for the message being conveyed.

Information such as production procedures, production orders and plans, security warnings, quality best practices, plant map, institutional communication, and calendars, are best displayed on boards, in planners, in glass cases, and any kind of signage in every production area and all common spaces (e.g. corridors and entryways).

From an internal communication standpoint, it is beneficial to have an "open door" policy where your employees feel comfortable bringing anything to your attention. It is a great way of motivating employees in your organization, and it can improve efficiency and productivity in the workplace.


Invest in Training and Education for Your Co-Workers

The manufacturing business is constantly changing. There’s always new technology or a new machine promising to make manufacturing floors more efficient than ever.

These changes and updates often modify the skills and processes required for certain tasks and it is necessary to have access to information and training to keep up with more advanced, specialized skills.


Your office can greatly benefit from wall-mounted products placed next to the workstations where they are easily seen so workers can be informed on any changes or updates. The more engaged people in the office are, the more likely they are to participate in learning activities and communication.


Encourage Collaboration

The manufacturing floor is more productive when everyone works together towards the same goal. Unity ensures less conflict and more collaboration. While focusing on work is important, it's also crucial to ensure that each staff member feels comfortable as part of a team and informed on all aspects of a project.


Use a community planner board that everyone on the team has access to, that can share all the tasks and responsibilities of each member, for all projects. Post the final goal on the board and explain the importance of everyone’s input and participation. Team members have to care about not only their own success , but the success of those around them and the organization as a whole. Schedule a ten minute meeting with everyone on the daily to align tasks and combine talents. Give an opportunity to the team to share experiences and thoughts about the best practices and improvements in performance.

Stay organized

The amount of money wasted and time consumed as a result of the lack of organization can be surprising. The way to enhance communication in any environment is to ensure it is well-organized by using a guideline such as a document and/or a communication plan to help maximize efficiency and productivity.

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