Work Measurement on Katsa Bag Production (Gifts and Graces: Cainta, Rizal)
I. Rationale Environmental issues and problems started to arise last decade. Awareness and drive to solve these problems has grown to 89% (NIHERST, 2008) since 2008. This has resulted to different campaigns and movements such as the Earth Hour Campaign, where everyone is encouraged to switch off household lights for an hour and the birth of eco-friendly products into the market. One of the most in demand and popular eco-friendly products is the cloth or katsa bags. Several big companies such as Rustan’s and SM have invested and promoted the use of this product not only because of its earth friendly feature but also due to the convenience and cost-saving advantage it gives to them and to their customers. Katsa bags have widened its range of usability. Before it is only used when people go to wet markets. Now, it is seen and used not only in supermarkets but in high end malls and places as well. With the continuous expansion of its market and increasing demand, production of katsa bags is now seen as a critical process as its production cost and market value is now a concern of the public.
II. Problem Statement Without an existing time standard for the production of katsa bags, the management allocates extensive time allowance for the completion of job orders. This results to excessive avoidable delays taken by the workers.
III. Objectives This study is an application of the theories learned in the IE32: Methods Engineering Class. It aims to utilize the problem solving tools and work measurement techniques discussed in the course. Moreover, this study intends to help Tahanang Walang Hagdanan by accomplishing the following specific objectives: * To improve the productivity and efficiency of Tahanan Walang Hagdanan’s katsa bag production * To determine the time standard for producing a katsa bag using time study * To improve systems and procedures for selected processes
IV. Scope and Limitations PRODUCT SCOPE The study focuses on the processes involve in the manufacturing of Tahanang Walang Hagdanan’s katsa bags. Since there are different va
rieties of katsa bags, production of Antipolo katsa bags will be the premiere focus. TIME STANDARD SCOPE Even though Antipolo katsa bag production will be observed in this study, standard time for all the all other processes except silkscreening will be applicable for other katsa bag variety with the same dimensions. Silkscreening is the source of variation as different imprints are processed in different durations. SILKSCREEN PROCESS LIMITATION Different customers require different imprints on the katsa bags. The time it takes to produce patterns differ depending on the number of colors that will be seen on the imprint. A pattern can be reused once it has been created. Returning customers with the same imprint
design do not need to be prepared a new silkscreen template. Since Antipolo katsa bag is a returning customer, creation of the silkscreen template will not be observed by this study. V. Methodology The group conducted visits to the actual site of katsa bag production in Cainta. Interviews with the operations director, Lita Evangelista, marketing officer, Lolit Tuazon and sewing department supervisor, Leizel Tabocolde, were done every visit to familiarize the process and to be aware of the problems that they encounter. The actual operators were also asked about their assigned tasks. Basic questions such as how the processes are done, how many operators are involved in the assembly and the like were asked to give the researchers a background on the nature of making katsa bags. Familiarization of the process was done before conducting an actual time study on the operators. The current system was documented by means of flowcharting. Moreover, problem solving tools were used to identify the sources of production inefficiencies and to recognize where to focus in solving the above mentioned problem. Time study was the work measurement tool used to determine the standard time for producing a bag. Through this, the time required for an operator to carry out a specific process was obtained at a defined rate of performance. the group also took into consideration the working conditions during the actual observation and see how these affects the workers’ performance. VI. Project Documentation COMPANY BACKGROUND Tahanang Walang Hagdanan Inc. is a center that equips the disabled with skills and knowledge for their integration into the mainstream of the society. People in this center are trained in different fields such as metalcraft, woodcraft, needlecraft, information technology, paper-making and packaging. The products produced by these trained workers are sold to local distributors and exported abroad. Tahanang Walang Hagdanan, providing different services and merchandise, is divided into different departments. One of these is the sewing department. Here, different kinds of bags, graduation caps, and doll caps are produced. One of the kinds of bags created in this section is called a katsa bag, also known as eco friendly bag. PROCESS FLOW The production of katsa bag begins by simultaneously preparing the strap and the body of the bag. The strap is prepared by one of the operators by cutting it to its proper length (123 inches) and burning the edges with the use of a candle. Three straps can be produced in one cycle while a strap’s edge is burned on at a time. The body of the bag is simultaneously done with the straps. Preparing the body of the bag can be broken down into 3 sub-processes. First, 3 people layout the fabric for both the main body and the bag’s sidings. For the main body, the katsa cloth is folded several times until it reaches a pile of 25 cloths (Figure 1). One fold measures 87 inches in length. The same process is done for the sidings of the bag but this time, the fabric is folded at 85 inches. After layout, the body and siding patterns are traced on the topmost fabric. Four bodies can be produced from an 87-inch fold while twenty sidings are created for the 85-inch fold. Lastly, the fabric is cut by one of the three workers using the cutting machine while the fabric is held in place by the other two (Figure 2). Figure 1. Workers Layout Katsa Cloth Figure 2. Cutting Katsa Cloth for Body The body of the bag is then silkscreened (Figure 3). The main silkscreen process is done by only a disabled person who consequently has limited movements. For efficiency purposes, assistance is provided to the main operator in the arranging of the printed cloths. Since the bag has two different designs for each side, the printing of the first design on one side is finished first before moving on to the other design. After doing the first print, the fabric is placed on top of a board with an adhesive by a helper. The adhesion of the cloth to the board or wood plate is done in order to maintain alignment of the pattern and print when the second color of a design is imprinted. Given that the second design of this model of katsa bag requires two colors, the first color is applied first before proceeding to the next one. Meanwhile, the ends of the 123-inch strap are sewn together (Figure 4). Markings are also placed on the middle of the strap for alignment purposes. Meanwhile, the ends of the 123-inch strap are sewn together (Figure 4). Markings are also placed on the middle of the strap for alignment purposes. When the print on the cloth is dry, markings are drawn on it to identify the spot where the strap is going to be placed (Figure 5). After the strap and body preparations, a running stitch using a high speed machine is done to connect the strap to the body (Figure 6). Once it is done, the sidings are sewn together with the body creating the actual form of the bag. Following this step is the serging of the edges of the fabric using the edging machine (Figure 7). Since the stitches are performed on the wrong side of the fabric, the bags are then inverted and the sides are marked in preparation of making the hemline. The final stitches on the side are made. Figure 6. Sewing the Strap and Body Together Figure 5. Drawing Markings on the Body Figure 7. Serging of Edges For the finishing touches, the bag is trimmed and checked for defects. Once it has already passed quality control, it is now ready to be packed and be delivered to the customer. The complete process flow of katsa bag production is described in the flowchart below (Figure 8). Figure 8. Process Flowchart of Katsa Bag Production WORK DISTRIBUTION Table 1. Work Distribution The needlecraft department of Tahanang Walang Hagdanan is composed of 16 employees. The table above shows the specific work assigned to each worker. This was only based on how the supervisor, Ms. Leizel Tabocolde described her staff. The layout, trace and cut process are done by four people as a group. After these processes are complete, two of them proceed to sewing while the other two have nothing left to do. In the silkscreen process, one person does the main procedure of coating while two assists him with the other sub-steps. After printing, the preparation of the strap, siding and body is done before sewing them together. The majority of the processes in this stage is assigned to a single person. For the sewing part, a total of 11 out of the 16 employees work since 11 hi speed machines are available in the department. Furthermore, only one person does the edging despite the availability of two machines because she is the only one skilled to use it. To illustrate more clearly the work distribution of the 16 workers, a pie chart was used (Figure 9). Each number described in the legend is a specific worker. It can be observed from this chart that half of the complete process is done by only five workers. Moreover, 8 workers are assigned to work on a quarter of the whole production. Table 2 shows the actual work percentage of each worker. Table 2. Work Distribution Percentage VII. Work Measurement Results and Analysis After familiarization of the katsa bag process, the group used the time study method to gather information for the evaluation of the katsa bag operation and to establish time standards. The snapback method was used in timing each of the processes identified in the flowchart (Figure 8). The processes were identified with the help of THW’s sewing department supervisor. The time study observation form found in the appendix shows the data gathered from the examination. For the determination of sample size, the group used the recommended sample size from Niebel’s Methods, Standards, and Work Design book. The book states that for an operation with cycle time cycles are enough. For this reason, cycles were used in the study. Five cycles were taken for each of the following processes: layout, trace, cut (LTC). On the other hand 10 cycles were taken for the remaining processes. Only five observations were taken for LCT because the workers can produce approximately 100 units of the bag during these processes. The allowances for personal needs, basic fatigue, variable fatigue, and special allowances were also taken from the recommended allowance from the Niebel’s book. These allowances were given to normal operations. *add duration of time study *add how we got performance rating EFFICIENT BUT NOT PRODUCTIVE Table X shows the summary of the results from the time study that was conducted. Based on the table, each process is performed efficiently by the worker. However during company visits wherein the researchers observed for
STREAM DIAGNOSTIC CHART Following the flow of the cause and effect arrows in the stream diagnostic chart (Figure 10), it can be observed that the most number of outgoing arrows comes from excessive avoidable delays. This indicates that having too many avoidable interruptions in the method of making katsa bags causes majority of the problems. The presence of too much avoidable delays causes the high idle time of workers. This consequently leads to last minute production for meeting their customer’s deadlines. Moreover, cramming the production of the bags causes the employees to work overtime and this in turn will be the reason for low quality control; since while chasing their deadline, it is highly probable that their skill of making the bags will be of poorer quality. Because of the existence of these problems, one of the actions taken by the management is the hiring of extra workers which just adds to labor cost. Furthermore, extension of the production process is also a step done by the management as an effect of excessive avoidable delays. From the stream diagnostic chart, it was identified that the main problem in the production of the katsa bags is too much avoidable delays. The root causes of this problem were determined using the ishikawa diagram above. There are three main categories in which these factors fall under: management, human and methods. I. Management a. Extensive allowances for production process The management treats the normal? workers the same way they do with the disabled workers thus giving them extra allowances. b. Lack of supervision c. Improper work distribution The weights of work of workers are not evenly distributed. Some workers have too many tasks as compared to their co-workers. d. Lack of policies In the current system, there no? are strict policies regarding proper work execution and time management. e. Ineffective scheduling II. Human f. Lack of discipline During work hours, the workers are continuously communicating with each other. g. Lack of responsibility During the entire production process for a specific job order, there are workers who do not go to work for several days and just work during crunch time. –(there are workers who do not go to work for several days and who just works when the deadline is near) III. Methods h. No standard time per process Workers are free to carry out their work on their own paces as they finish the required job orders. i. Undermanned stations With uneven work distributions, there are processes that lack manpower j. Processes not performed continuously Since the allowances given are too much, workers tend to stop every now and then to take a break even if a task in not yet done k. Dependent on the available number of workers Not all the workers go to work all the time thus the number of processes performed are limited to the ability and number of those who came. Insert Pareto chart Figure 13. Gantt Chart The gantt chart (Figure 13) is used to give an overview of the tasks that should be done simultaneously. Moreover, it shows which among these processes have relative short and long processing times. The time index used is neither the conventional hours of a day nor days of a week. Instead, the time index in Figure 13 is the fraction of minutes of a single cycle. This is because Tahanan Walang Hagdanan does not follow a standardized scheduling of work. Workers and operators start their workday based on the unfinished task the previous day. Based on the gantt chart, preliminary processes of the cloth and strap are independent of each other as they can be performed without the output of the other. Folding of the layout and tracing, cutting, silk-screening and marking of the cloth should be done at the same time with cutting, edge burning, stitching and marking of the strap. Ensuring that these processes are performed in order avoids delays and pile up of unwanted inventory. Delays are probable to happen if succeeding processes do not occur because of unfinished outputs from the succeeding processes. This will also cause idle time for the workers of the succeeding processes as they will have no material no work on. Moreover, pile up of unwanted inventory will happen if either of the two preparatory processes is not executed on time. This will cause an additional liability since there will be a need to temporary store these inventory. Furthermore, evident in the gantt chart as well is the short processing time involving the inverting of the bag. This process is done by another operator different from the operator from the preceding and succeeding processes. This is a potential area of improvement as this process can be merged to either the preceding or succeeding process. Difficulty of performing this task is at minimum as no specialization and training is needed to complete it. Implementation Plan Figure X shows the group’s suggested implementation plan if the recommendations were to be carried out by Tahanang Walang Hagdanan. l Std.
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