Using Your Manufacturing Execution System to Engage Employees

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IUsing Your Manufacturing Execution System to Engage Employees
May 16, 2018 Roy Thomas Jump to Comments
Using Your Manufacturing Execution System to Engage Employees

According to Gallup's 2017 State of the American Workplace, only 25 percent of U.S. manufacturing employees are engaged, meaning they are involved in, enthusiastic about, and committed to their work and employers. An equal percentage are actively disengaged. These disengaged employees negatively impact their coworkers and cost employers anywhere from $483 billion to $605 billion each year in lost productivity.

For manufacturers that employ data-driven decision-making, the solution to disengagement lies in the numbers. The key is to translate data into a story that resonates with your employees — and chances are you already have the necessary tools to drive engagement.

Start by making your real-time metrics visible. For example, if you employ a manufacturing execution system, you can identify how quickly and accurately employees move through critical shop floor processes. Rather than restricting that data to management, share it with your staff. Giving employees line of sight across all process teams provides a standard they can measure their performance against, highlights quick wins, and demonstrates how their performance contributes to the larger goal.

Apply performance data to achievable goals and objectives. Better data gathering solutions also inspire more meaningful performance reviews. Rather than grading your employees based on observation alone, allow numbers to drive the conversation. There may be underlying issues you can identify and work on together. Empower staff to approach every day as a chance to improve.

Finally, use technology to encourage personal development and open feedback. Reexamine your technology on the shop floor. Is it outdated, or, conversely, is it so advanced that your employees don’t fully understand how to operate it? If you employ mobile technology such as tablets, build in a real-time messaging feature so that employees can send questions to management and receive an immediate response.

When people are confident with their work and their employer, they are more willing to identify problems and suggest ways to improve quality and quantity of output. When you translate your data into actionable goals, you lay the foundation for greater engagement — and, ultimately, greater productivity — across your team.

For more of Roy’s thoughts on using data to improve employee engagement, read his full article, which was recently published in Manufacturing Business Technology

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