Many people across the country are experiencing a labor shortage. Unemployment in many cities is at an all-time low. There is pressure in new competition as more and more facilities are constructed, and rising wage pressures. When it comes to positions in warehouses and distribution centers, there are some additional challenges that we all face in getting employees for both hours and management positions. However, one thing to consider is that many companies have policies that may be contributing to their shortages of employees.
Understanding and having insight into a production process is important. That seems obvious, but many key processes are often without strong visibility or reporting. Recognizing the progress (or lack thereof) is important when scheduling orders, planning resources, or simply getting the product shipped on time.
For years I complained to my wife that despite the fact that I ate healthy and lean meals, I simply could not lose weight. At first she asked me what I had eaten and I would recite a list of healthy foods. For quite some time, she agreed, “you are doing everything right.” Then one day she shared an observation.
My list didn’t match my reality. She quickly started pointing out things that she witnessed – the candy bar after lunch, the forgotten beer watching the ballgame, and the calorie dense latte. In short, I was fooling myself. After decades of managing and observing production floors throughout the U.S., I realized that the same phenomenon takes place in almost every work site that I visit.