If you have found methods to improve existing processes within your company and want to be sure that the old ways of doing things are not reverted to in the future, installing a ratchet device is the way to go.
Overview: What is a ratchet device?
A ratchet device is a measure taken in order to guarantee that an improvement made to a process is irreversible.
3 Benefits of a Ratchet Device
There are several benefits to utilizing a ratchet device. Here are a few of them:
1. Keeps forward momentum
A ratchet device prevents there from being backward motion. In business, we never want to move backward, so utilizing ratchet devices helps us achieve this.
2. Encourages working together
When thinking in terms of your business as a wheel, a ratchet is not a separate wheel. It is a set of parts meant to work as a system together. This sort of unity of purpose is an asset in business.
3. Avoids confusion
Having ratchet devices installed keeps staff from getting confused and eliminates the chance for mistakes by having the option of reverting to outdated methods.
Why are ratchet devices important to understand?
Understanding ratchet devices are an important part of knowing how to conduct business properly for a number of reasons:
1. You need to have streamlined processes.
Being able to understand how to implement ratchet devices into your processes helps your business run more smoothly and efficiently.
2. It keeps company morale high.
If you do not know how to work ratchet devices into your processes, there is a higher likelihood that mistakes will be made by you or your employees. This can slow down production, increase costs exponentially, cause frustration amongst staff, and ultimately lower your company’s overall morale.
3. Your products will keep getting better.
By understanding how to successfully eliminate the muck and waste from your processes and having secure methods in place that prevent them from returning, you make it easier to continually improve your products.
An Industry Example of a Ratchet Device
In a manufacturing plant, it is found that, on average, employees that go off-site for lunch take 45 minutes longer to return to the production floor. It is determined that this is having a negative impact on production and the customers are not pleased. With the employees surveyed, the most common answer as to why the extra time is being taken is that there are no decent places to buy lunch near the worksite. Upon analysis, a small fraction of what is being lost during the extra time that the employees spend off-site can be covered by rotating a couple of quality food trucks to be on-site during work hours. The food trucks are brought on to eliminate the need for the employees to go off-site for lunch, everyone is made aware that there is no longer a need to go off-site, and keeping the food trucks regularly rotating is used as a ratchet device to prevent the employees from getting bored with what is on offer from the trucks and wanting to leave the premises for lunch in the future.
3 Best Practices When Thinking about Ratchet Devices
When you implement a ratchet device, there are a few things you want to consider:
1. Does it actually move things forward?
You don’t want to be too hasty when implementing a ratchet device. Make sure that your new processes are sound before putting in a foolproof method to keep from returning to any aspects of them.
2. Will your employees be happy with the change?
It is important to think of your staff when making changes to processes and then implementing a ratchet device. Be sure to show employees how these things improve their job and make things better for everyone.
3. Does it increase customer confidence?
If there has been an issue with production that has caused customer dissatisfaction, let your customers know the changes made and the ratchet devices that are in effect that ensure these issues will not recur.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about Ratchet Devices
1. What would be an example of a ratchet device?
If changes have been made to improve the output of a machine, eliminating the instructions that are not applicable to the changes that have been made would be an example of a ratchet device.
2. How can I truly know if a ratchet device is going to work or is working correctly?
There are a few ways to be sure of this, but one clear method would be to utilize the operations process in your implementation. This means proper planning, preparing, executing, and analysis of the ratchet device.
3. At what point should I implement a ratchet device?
A ratchet device should be implemented once all the necessary steps have been taken to thoroughly determine that a new improvement is sound and that revisiting the prior process will only create confusion and error.
Utilizing Ratchet Devices in your Business
Making changes and improvements in your business can take a significant amount of time, planning, training, and effort. Once it is clear that these improvements are the way to keep moving your business forward, you now know that installing a ratchet device is the way to keep things from falling back.