Five Beliefs of Resource Productivity

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Haven’t heard of resource productivity?  It’s really just another way of saying “do more with less” or “do the same with less.”  Which in a world of resource scarcity is a good thing to talk about.

In Resource-Productive Operations: Five Core Beliefs to Increase Profits Through Leaner and Greener Manufacturing Operations, Markus Hammer and Ken Somers, two McKinsey experts, outline how manufacturers need to think beyond efficiency gained by upgrading lighting and automating HVAC systems by following their five beliefs.

1. Don’t forget about lean –  Lean may be something we’ve all heard about and isn’t as flashy as it was a few decades ago, but there are still many resource efficiencies to be gained by being lean.

2. Measure a new baseline – what could your process achieve under perfect conditions?  That is the new baseline. Don’t use the current process as a baseline and measure back from that.  Measure what  is perfect and try to get the process as close to that as possible.

3. Prioritize Profit – output is good, and so is reducing energy consumption. But how can we measure both at the same time?  Measure your profit per hour.

4. Kill the Czar – the “czar” moniker has been getting my goat for some time, so I’d like to kill it here.  Resource productivity can’t be the job of one person with the a cute title.  It’s a company-wide effort that has to do with technical assets and technical processes, people management, and company attitudes.

5. Have You Heard of Recycling? – i bet you have…But applying recycling to the manufacturing process means a little more.  It means designing products that can reuse components from used products.  Which means getting a lot smarter about closing the life-cycle loop of the products you make.

You can download the first chapter of the book here.


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