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The 6 pillar system: Your pathway to manufacturing excellence
By Michael Woodruff

mQ Intelligence has created the “6 Pillars of Manufacturing Excellence”, which if understood, adopted, measured, reviewed and embedded, will construct the essential foundations for building strong, resilient businesses, particularly in the food manufacturing sector.

Pillar 1: Automation

Reliable equipment is at the heart of a well-run factory.                                               

Yet many factory managers struggle on a daily basis with poorly programmed equipment that has been supplied with inferior code, complex fault recovery, limited or non-existent documentation and minimal training.                       

If your production and engineering teams are stressed from keeping unreliable equipment on-line, then one solution is to engage mQ Intelligence who can: 
  • Assess the existing code
  • Make recommendations
  • Implement best-practice standards 
  • Document what is listed
  • Improve fault recovery
  • Reduce troubleshooting time
Pillar 2: Performance

Operating a factory without measurement is like driving a car without a dashboard.

When coupled with a strong automation foundation (as outlined in pillar 1), it makes sense to monitor the performance of machines and processes in real-time, otherwise any improvement or deviation cannot be quickly quantified.

mQ Intelligence can provide performance information in real time down to the cost per unit produced to realise exceptional bottom line improvements.           

Accurate and timely performance measurement will:
  • Tell you if your equipment is doing what it is supposed to be doing
  • Create a platform on which continuous improvement can be applied
  • Identify where best to spend your capital for optimal return on investment 

Pillar 3: Governance

For a manufacturing business to achieve excellence, it is critical to have good governance, usually through the establishment of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to guide a variety of tasks. 

Manufacturing governed by an SOP should be underpinned by master data quality as close to 100 per cent accurate as possible.                                                         

At mQ Intelligence, we believe that manufacturers should operate from “a single version of the truth”, such as an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. 

Utilising better connectivity to strengthen data sharing and governance, mQ Intelligence can help clients build more resilient and adaptive SOPs to achieve manufacturing excellence, while presenting enhanced opportunities to develop compliance-ready solutions demanded by fast-moving supply chain partners.

Pillar 4: Visibility

At mQ Intelligence, visibility means being able to see the information, when and where it is needed.

Visibility into the manufacturing process provides insight into the production supply chain, which affects the ability to track and trace, as well as record its genealogy. Data visibility is fundamental in supporting a culture of continuous improvement. 

mQ Intelligence provides visibility into the inner workings of your operation, so that at any time, you can see what’s happening where, when and by whom, and be notified of deviations.                                                        

Pillar 5: Integration                                                          

An integrated business can adapt to ever moving forces of variability, respond to changing customer demand and better handle input variability from suppliers.

At mQ Intelligence we understand that integration is a key enabler in the journey toward manufacturing excellence and can offer solutions that will create seamless connectivity between remote data silos to facilitate the sharing of key data points throughout the manufacturing landscape.

Pillar 6: Execution

Our experience has shown that using an execution framework that can be adjusted for different business needs, produces the optimum result.                                                         

A defined and balanced execution strategy drives productivity and provides a major feedback loop to enhance manufacturing visibility, in turn providing critical input to maximise inventory accuracy and order fulfilment - which leads to happier (and repeat) customers.                                                           

A well planned and well executed manufacturing process has a much better opportunity to reach maximum potential, attain cost targets and move the business closer towards excellence.                                                            

Using the 6 Pillar framework, mQ Intelligence can help create a manufacturing excellence roadmap, providing a quick analysis of:
  • Where your business is positioned
  • A vision of where the business wants to be in 12 months 
  • And a high-level roadmap of the steps required to get there  
The roadmap usually contains defined approaches, steps and milestones, aligned with the business’s appetite for change, spread across each of the 6 pillars.  

It often also contains cost-benefit analyses so that the business can gain some quick wins, build confidence and attain momentum. It is also a smart way to spend limited capex and achieve solid ROI.                                                                                                                       

For further information on how you can learn more about manufacturing intelligence, or for assistance with strategy and roadmap development, contact us at 

mQ Intelligence