There are many challenges in reducing change over downtime, but the biggest one is changing the way people work. You can change devices on the machine, you can turn the machine into quick-change devices, but changing the way people work is the most difficult. Operators who have been doing the change for many years, literally cannot see a different way of working. When their way becomes the only way to do it, then you have what’s called paradigm paralysis. When you watch your operators do a change over on the same machine on different shifts, you will notice they all do it differently, yet they all believe their way is the best way to do it.
So is there a best way to do a change over? And if so, how do you find it? I suggest video taping the change over and have operators watch the video. They will start seeing different ways they can work if they focus on reducing their effort. And they will see these changes and different ways of working because they’re viewing themselves from a different vantage point. If you change the way people think about their work, the way they work automatically changes.