The Importance of Using Poka-Yoke Efficiently in Today’s World
There are billions of dollars invested in the manufacturing businesses all over the world. That’s why quality assurance is something that everyone talks about in every business. In order to keep production standards consistent, a lot of attention is given to what happens on at the production floors. There are various processes that are practiced to ensure quality standards. Some of them are Statistical Quality Control (SQC), Zero Defects, Total Quality Management (TQM), and several other techniques used for inspecting and minimizing the errors, preventing defects and avoiding production mistakes. At AMS, we believe in the power of reducing error and improving quality with Poka-Yoke.
The Concept of Poka-Yoke
Poka-Yoke is a Japanese term that literally means mistake proofing. It was developed by a Japanese engineer, Shigeo Shingo, who previously developed the concept of Zero Quality Control (ZQC). The approach of this engineer was based on the following:
- Using Poka-Yoke devices to prevent mistakes and errors in manufacturing processes.
- To use such devices for inspecting manufactured products.
Understanding the Need of Poka-Yoke
When a company manufactures a product – doll, shoes, electronic appliances, computers or cell-phones – it needs to make sure that none of the defected pieces are delivered to the final consumers. It is very necessary that a manufacturer understands the importance of quality control, especially in this digital age of information, technology and competition. You make one mistake and you lose all your customers. Thus, a manufacturer needs to provide the promised quality to the consumers at all costs. This is the only thing that keeps consumers satisfied and makes them loyal.
How do you think manufacturers can make their production processes reach that level of perfection? How can a manufacturer deliver products that are free from defects and flaws? Using Poka-Yoke techniques and devices can solve this problem completely.
The Use of Poka-Yoke
Besides being used for making production processes flawless and products free from defects, the use of Poka-Yoke devices has penetrated into our daily lives as well. Here are a few examples of how Poka-Yoke (mistake proofing) is being applied in the world today to avoid mistakes, live efficiently and reduce costs:
- The sensors used in urinals and sinks can detect when the water is to be turned off. This reduces the wastage of water, especially in public restrooms.
- Lighting systems with timers can turn off automatically once you have set the time. This saves a lot of electricity in public washrooms and laundry rooms.
- Smoke detectors can inform you about a potential hazard, and the doors of a departmental store or a library can send off a signal if the things are not properly checked out.
- The car does not start if the ignition is not turned on, the key will not turn off the ignition if your car is in reverse gear, and the lights will blink if you have forgotten to fasten your seat belt or if the gas level begins to drop. All these indicators make driving safe.
- Medical devices must meet strict standards or they can pose a serious risk to human health. Manufacturers can significantly reduce errors when producing insulin pumps, catheters, dialysis machines and more.
Today, Poka-Yoke devices are being used in various industries. Modern robotics is an example of Poka-Yoke that has improved productivity. Poka-Yoke has brought innovation in plastic joining and revolutionizes the semi-automated machines that are frequently used in automotive, medical, consumer, and electronic appliance industries. If you are interested in learning more about these production increasing, cost effective and semi-automated machines, please contact AMS today!
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