Work management means planning and scheduling work to avoid barriers to business continuity. For instance, if there are sixteen processes that you must shut down after every five weeks, you should plan and schedule ahead. Failing to do so can be a massive downtime for the company. In this article at Reliable Plant, Christer Idhammar shares how work management influences business growth.
Effecting Work Management
Many forget the difference between planning and scheduling. While planning is preparing for the work, scheduling is assigning it. A manager first plans the work scope, then schedules it for execution, creates the timeline, and assigns resources. Leaders always aim to allocate capable resources because any plan or schedule can be disrupted. As the saying goes, “Zero failure theory is an utopia but zero breakdown theory is not.”
An efficient developer can deliver despite the change in requirements or tasks. Sometimes, you do not get the time to plan before a system downtime. So, risk management should also be a part of the work management process.
How It’s Done
Document the work management process to increase its efficacy and reduce conflict between various team members and stakeholders. Include functions like operations – maintenance coordination, prioritization, planning, scheduling, KPIs, etc. Have hold codes such as ‘waiting material’, ‘waiting approval’, and ‘waiting opportunity’. The aim is to reduce resource waste or burnout due to reactive assignment.
Planners must allocate 60 to 70 percent of their time in planning the assignments. The reality is that the majority of them devote less than 60 percent to these activities, according to an IDCON survey. 70 percent of the participants revealed they spend less than 30 percent of their time in planning. The problem is, if planners get less time to plan, it costs the company dearly. Managers must then have to explain to the higher-ups the reason behind such meltdowns. Biased priorities, system downtime, unsupporting operations, inadequate training, and top management barriers were among the many reasons.
For work management to be effective, it is the operations and maintenance teams’ onus to facilitate the production environment. Organizations must maintain a standard all across to get things done on time without any hassle or unnecessary bottlenecks. So before making any changes, ask this question to yourself: “What constitutes that a job must be done immediately and overrides other less important ongoing work?”
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