Labor Planning is integral to every business. Not every company has the luxury of running the same exact product mix and quantity day in, and day out. Therefore, labor planning is vital to achieving customer demand as well as achieving budget. Strategy3 recognizes that this can be very challenging and a fine balance in achieving both. Optimizing your Labor Planning allows companies to achieve this delicate balance.
Statements of Work
Strategy3 has worked with numerous companies with such challenges. One particular manufacturer had a high product mix that made both production scheduling and Labor Planning complex. Strategy3 was hired to evaluate and ultimately optimize the process. It quickly became apparent that the client was scheduling labor in such a way that there was either not enough labor to meet production demand or so much labor scheduled that a large portion of the workforce was idle or underutilized. Strategy3 developed a protocol for the production planning schedule function which tied it in with the Labor Planning needs. Achieving such a tool allowed the scheduling department and production department to communicate much more seamlessly. In effect, the new process permitted that there was always the correct labor in the correct spot at the correct time. By managing the scheduling and Labor Planning, Strategy3 was able to reduce unnecessary labor costs as a percentage of sales from 14.2% to 8.4%
Another instance of Labor Planning was for an assembly operation. Long lead times and multiple steps of assembly made managing the required Labor Planning tedious from day to day. Strategy3 evaluated and dissected the entire process for 80% of the parts assembled. Time studies were conducted for each step along the process. Ultimately, Strategy3 split the operation into two divisions; Subassembly and Final Assembly. Doing so allowed the management of the Labor Planning much less time consuming. What was at one point reactive Labor Planning became much more proactive. In summary, exact times for each Subassembly and Assembly were known in advance and were predictable, rather than retroactively known. This effectively lowered the labor cost and expedited the lead time from order-taking through the final build.