ISO9001 Consultant Services


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What we include in a human error prevention program for industrial operations


Human error elimination is a vitally important manufacturing and maintenance goal. Human error causes are now well understood and human error prevention programs can be used in all companies to greatly reduce the human error rate.



 

Our key focus in our manufacturing plants is to address human errors and we want to learn what we can proactively do to control human error.

My goal is to understand the error prevention approach used by Lifetime Reliability Solutions. Our queries are:

  1. Approach and methodology to human error reduction
  2. Key components of your program for manufacturing (assessment, tools, processes, etc.)
  3. Recommended implementation strategy
  4. Training programs/workshops/certifications
  5. The value your program brings to the organization (examples of real results or 'quantifiable data' from your program)
  6. Typical program costs: training, license fees, software, etc.
  7. Global support model
  8. Self-sustainability model
  9. Client listing / recommendations



Dear Julia,

I have imbedded replies and comments in your original email below. Please feel free to ask new questions or request clarification on my comments.

1. Approach and methodology to human error reduction

There are a couple of considerations in this answer, 1) can physical error proofing devices be used as an economic first choice? If so then do so, if not then, 2) procedural error reduction becomes the only other choice.

Our particular methodology focuses on proactive error prevention and not error detection and correction. It is called the ‘Accuracy Controlled Enterprise’ (ACE).

As part of our procedural error prevention solution we look at the risk to your operation from probable failures and build the necessary level of controls to match the risk. For example, a failure that happens once in a hundred opportunities for error and costs $10,000 total business-wide loss, verses another failure with the same odds but costs $100,000 in defect and failure total business-wide cost, would get different grades of solution. The $10K problem might use a checklist, whereas the $100K problem might use a hold point and an independent inspection by a second competent person. We always look for the best financial solution your company can afford to implement.

2. Key components of your program for manufacturing (assessment, tools, processes, etc.).

We use your business and production process flowcharts and failure history records to identify what goes wrong, where it goes wrong, when it goes wrong and who is involved. If you have no such data, or it is insufficient, we develop it using what information a site has available and from interviews with production supervisors, maintenance staff and operators. (It is important that this project be seen in a positive light and no blame is to be apportioned from discoveries made when investigating past failure history.)

We use your business and production process flowcharts and failure history records to identify what goes wrong, where it goes wrong, when it goes wrong and who is involved. If you have no such data, or it is insufficient, we develop it using what information a site has available and from interviews with production supervisors, maintenance staff and operators. (It is important that this project be seen in a positive light and no blame is to be apportioned from discoveries made when investigating past failure history.)

3. Recommended implementation strategy

Once the error control mechanisms are selected we rewrite your procedures to include them, allocating clear responsibility and accountability to the persons involved in the error prevention solution. Monitoring and trending using visual charts is introduced if required. People are trained in the method to be used, and when necessary they are chaperoned through the changes.

The time that an implementation takes depends on how well current site processes are documented and what data is collected. We can do nothing to improve error rates without foundational process information and error data. If it does not already exist in the right forms, then documents must first be developed and the error rates in the process steps determined.

4. Training programs/workshops/certifications

We will not retrain people in their jobs, rather we will train them in the error prevention changes added to their work processes. In some cases this will be one-on-one training using the improved procedure as the source of the training content, i.e. we match training to the needs of the error reduction method in use. If charts and graphs are to be used for error prevention the person will be trained in the specific solution employed.

A certificate for getting trained in new error reducing methods does not send the right signal to your people. It is not a training program that we are offering, it is a solution to greatly lower the frequency of human errors in your company.

We suggest that what you should do is provide valued recognition for correct role model behavior and results. The new proper ways to do one’s work needs to become subconsciously imbedded into your peoples’ minds. It is vital that only the right actions and results are rewarded and recognized. We want only the right behavior to be imbedded in the mind. Receiving a ‘certificate of recognition’ after sustained, clearly improved performance maybe one suitable vehicle to use to achieve this aim.

Alternately, we can teach our methodology to your management and people and you implement it yourselves. In that case we will deliver a training program and a certificate of training attendance will be provided. (See Item 6 for more information if a training program is wanted.)

5. The value your program brings to the organization (examples of real results or “quantifiable data” from clients who have implemented your program)

We use a risk matrix to assess the savings created by the reduction in errors. We determine how much money is to be made with each level of error reduction. Say the error rate were to drop by half from where it was, we convert that improvement into the likely operating profit gained by your company. It is a simple process to tell you in advance what is the likely operating profit increase you will make from your error reduction project.

6. Typical program costs: training, license fees, software, etc.

It is recommended that one site be taken as a pilot to prove our approach works and see how much financial improvement it produces from the operation.

At the beginning we would scope and price only for that first pilot site. It would be necessary to visit the pilot site and develop a comprehensive understanding of the current situation that needs to be addressed. This will require flights, accommodation, transport, etc. for two of our people. Once you advise the site to be used, and its size and complexity, we can provide a quote for the preliminary data collection visit. From that visit we will be able to indicate the subsequent implementation time and costs.

If it is only training in our methodology that you want, then we develop a suitable training program and take it to each site. The duration of the training depends on the numbers of persons being trained and how often they can attend the training. Training can be delivered in an intensive two-day course, or spread over several weeks using short duration sessions. The fee is based on a per training day rate, plus we charge per travel day or waiting/stand-by day. All expenses are to your account. We charge 15% on the cost of any purchases we make (e.g. flights, accommodation, transport, course materials, etc.) for administration and management.

If you adopt our methods across a site an going license fee applies in addition to the implementation costs. The license fee is 15% of the increased operating profits caused by the use of the technique. This fee is paid quarterly.

7. Global support model

After the introduction of the methodology and site training, it is expected that every site will function correctly without committing long-term assistance from LRS. Your business processes will be designed to work properly and be self-correcting. Further help will be available from LRS as you require it in future.

We have agents in a range of countries and hope to match an agent with the language suited to your sites. If there is a language problem with overseas sites we will need you to supply interpreters.

8. Self-sustainability model

Most of the sustainability is built into each process being improved. We also add necessary measuring and monitoring tasks into relevant supervisory and management processes. Regular auditing of procedural compliance is also undertaken at a frequency to match the business risk from an error. The comments in Item 4 about role model recognition also apply to this Item.

You can add further Human Resource motivation enhancements available to corporations, e.g. bonuses, career paths, develop higher skills, public recognition, etc.

9. Client listing/recommendations

Up until now we have only trained people from companies interested in our methodology and have not been asked to actually run the project, provide resources and implement solutions on a client site.

Because this is our first ‘design and roll-out’ we want it done in small, yet practical, steps. We suggest first doing error prevention in a complete process at a site. Once that is bedded down and the evidence is in, you roll it out to the rest of the site. Once the pilot site is stable and the evidence is in, you roll it out to all national sites. After that we can take it world-wide at a faster pace. We want to be proven sure that your company gets real worth from the error prevention changes before doing even bigger changes.

If you chose to go with LRS we would first develop a complete and comprehensive project plan to cover design and implementation starting with a pilot process at the pilot site. That includes all necessary activities, durations and resources to complete the project at the site. That plan and its iterations will be the foundation content for your other operating sites.

Within the LRS Network we have a great strength in project management and I am confident that we can develop a practical and achievable plan to get the error rate at your production sites down to world class levels.

The least cost option is to take one process from a selected national site and apply the error reduction methodology only in that process. Within two months of the pilot process completion you would know its worth and be in a knowledgeable position to decide to take the initiative across the rest of the pilot site. When one site is completed you will be a knowledgeable position to decide to take the solution to all national sites–and after that to the other plants world-wide.

Whether you chose a pilot process or a complete pilot site, we need to visit the chosen site you select in order to develop a bespoke quote specific to that site. The visit may take 2 to 3 days for two of us, depending on the chosen site and process complexity. This would not be free and we would charge to develop such a comprehensive quote and plan. Also during the quoting visit we would explain the details of our solution to interested parties in your organization.

Thank you for your inquiry on how we address human error with the Accuracy Controlled Enterprise methodology.

My best regards to you,


Mike Sondalini
Managing Director
Lifetime Reliability Solutions HQ



LIFETIME RELIABILITY SOLUTIONS CONSULTANTS
Creators of the Enterprise Wellness Way to Business Excellence
Creators of the Accuracy Controlled Enterprise (ACE) 3T Quality Management System
Creators of the Plant Wellness Way to World Class Reliability and Operational Excellence
Providing World Wide, Independent, Licensed Maintenance Consulting, Enterprise Asset Management
Consultant, ISO 9001 Consultant, Lean Manufacturing and Lean Business Improvement Consulting Services

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