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How to reduce the production costs in the plastics industry?
Discover how to reduce the production costs in the plastics industry while maintaining efficiency and results.
In recent years, products manufactured by the plastics industry have become even more complex and customizable. This means that, in many cases, they are also more expensive to produce. Therefore, we must find ways to reduce the cost of production to maintain the company's profit margins.
Even if the product is in high demand, if its production is inefficient, it’s likely to be wasting resources. In this case, instead of increasing the price to offset expenses, a policy of reducing costs and waste can be an option. In this way, it will be possible to guarantee quality products with more competitive prices.
Tips to reduce production costs in the plastics industry
1. Improve energy efficiency.
The plastic industry uses a large amount of energy to drive a wide range of manufacturing processes. Many of the processes involve constant temperature control, either low or high. This opens a series of opportunities to improve energy efficiency.
For example, reducing the amount of heat in a process or recovering the waste heat for later use allows to save large amounts of energy. In addition, since the industry uses many types of motorized equipment, it’s essential to invest in preventive maintenance and high efficiency machinery.
"We, who have a lot of experience, find a series of problems in the processes that lead to loss, for example, two engines running at the same time, in which case an analysis of the process would have indicated that there is no such need." Reinaldo Lopes, Electrical Engineering of the FEI University Center,
Essentially, the plastics industry can reduce overhead costs and increase profit margins simply by implementing efficiency measures. With this, the impact is not only in profits. The products also end up improving in quality, which leads to a better competitiveness in the market.
2. Identify processes that don’t add value.
Innovation is the key word for the plastics industry. Therefore, a review of all operational processes is required periodically. In other words, it’s necessary to identify redundant or deficient activities that only generate costs for the company.
To reduce production costs and waste, the industry needs to verify, for example, if it’s producing more items than necessary. The excess of stocks of materials or machinery stopped too long during the production process are also points of attention. Even so, it’s important to have an accurate quality control. This control avoids losses, waste and additional costs, according to Paulino Francischini, coordinator of the MBA in Production Management at the Vanzolini Foundation.
“Even if the material of a non-conforming product is reused, labor and machinery and energy costs, for example, cannot be reused. Plastic production must have an adequate process control to allow the reduction of defects and operating costs”.
In this way, it’s important to analyze the value added throughout the manufacturing cycle. With this, it’s possible to determine if each task and production is really necessary in the current and future scenario. This work not only helps reduce the cost of production, but also helps to keep manufacturing costs to a minimum.
3. Keep the team trained.
Reducing wages or jobs to reduce costs is a common mistake. This practice generally only increases the level of employee dissatisfaction, diverts the talent potential for hiring and increases the turnover rate of the company.
If the plastic industry seeks to improve its workforce efficiency, it’s necessary to hire good professionals, sensitize them and train them with adequate productivity techniques and, mainly, cost reduction in the factory.
With specialized and motivating training, you can optimize the production of a product by minimizing the loss of time and raw material. This makes employees work at a faster pace and with higher quality.
Therefore, it’s crucial that companies are aware of all the bottlenecks and opportunities for possible improvements, both administrative and technological, that can be sought and achieved to reduce the cost of production. With this, a more optimized cost production and a competitive differential for the business are achieved.