Recently, CEP Site Manager Charlie Binger was featured in @Ford Magazine talking about the importance of the Periodic Job Observation Process. To read the complete article:
To ensure quality and promote continuous improvement, a daily Periodic Job Observation (PJO)/Deep Knowledge process is in place at Ford’s manufacturing facilities. At the beginning of the PJO/Deep Knowledge process, a process coach and a team leader – both with an Operator Instruction Sheet (OIS) in hand – observe an employee doing a job.
“For each and every job there is a detailed OIS that tells the employee exactly what to do step by step,” said Charlie Binger, site manager, Cleveland Engine Plant. “For example,‘I pick up two bolts with my left hand. I transfer one bolt to my right hand. I insert the bolt with my right hand into the engine, and so on.’” It is critical that employees follow the OIS to the letter, said Binger.
“You want every employee doing the same job on every shift to do it the same exact way to prevent mistakes that could impact the quality of the final product,” said Binger. “If the instructions say to pick up two bolts, you don’t want the employee picking up four bolts because they could inadvertently drop one into the engine. Now you have a bonus part in an engine – maybe in a cylinder – and when you fire that engine up it may fail.”
Once the process coach and team leader have observed the employee doing the job a few times, the team leader then takes over for the employee – giving him or her time to meet with the process coach for a one-on-one discussion to address any issues or concerns identified on the job.
“This is a two-way conversation,” said Binger. “It is an opportunity for the process coach to explain to the employee what – if anything – they’re doing incorrectly and the value of performing the job to the standard. It’s also an opportunity for the employee to share ideas about how the job might be done better, faster or more efficiently.” Issues that are brought up during these discussions are reviewed and investigated. If modifications are made to the work process, everyone on the team signs off on them and they are documented in the OIS going forward.
According to Binger, PJO/Deep Knowledge processes have been performed at Ford plants for several years, but now things are different. In-depth employee discussions and opportunities for improvement are included.
“In the spirit of the Ford Production System we now count on the people doing the job to educate us and to drive continuous improvement,” he said.