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Continuous Flow Manufacturing

Continuous flow manufacturing (CFM) is a system's approach to total system improvement. The Center for Entrepreneurial Studies and Development, Inc., (CESD) has developed clearly defined steps to achieving better throughput and reducing inventories and operating expenses. The steps combine employee-driven cellular design and constraint management. In its simplest form, CFM is a process for developing improved workflow using team-based problem solving.

The process is managed by a leadership team, which consists of three subteams. These teams manage cultural change, identify and implement process flow requirements, and measure the cultural and physical process. The entire organization is trained in process improvement and cultural change tools to facilitate the transition to a continuous flow manufacturing environment.

Some advantages of continuous flow manufacturing:

  • Improved customer service

  • Improved retention and reduced absenteeism

  • Improved quality control and elimination of waste

  • Improved materials handling practices and production process
    layout

  • Improved scheduling and reduced flow time and costs

  • Reduced in-process inventory and improved inventory control

  • Increased utilization of capacity (decrease in machine
    maintenance)

  • Reduced set-up times

  • Elimination of non value-added tasks

  • Improved safety practices
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