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How to Meet On-Time Delivery Targets Every Time

In manufacturing, on-time delivery (OTD) is the name of the game. It's the promise you make to your customers, the benchmark by which you're measured, and the key to maintaining healthy customer relationships. 

Yet, many manufacturers find themselves struggling with delivery delays. The consequences can be significant: strained relationships, missed sales opportunities, late delivery penalties, customer churn, and stressed-out teams.

But we’re here to equip you with the strategies and tools you need to ensure you never miss another delivery deadline. Let's get started.

The Strains and Pains of Missed OTD Targets

Needless to say, missing OTD targets can have a huge impact on your business. Different manufacturers may encounter different problems, but they’ll typically fall somewhere in this list.

  1. Strained customer relationships. Customers rely on your promises for timely delivery. When you fall short, trust erodes, and relationships become strained. No one wants to be known as the unreliable supplier.
  1. Missed sales opportunities. Late deliveries can result in missed opportunities. Customers may look elsewhere for suppliers who can consistently meet their deadlines, costing you potential sales.
  1. Penalties for late deliveries. Some customers impose penalties for late deliveries, or you may have to pay more for expedited shipping (like next-day air), which eats into your profits and damages your reputation.
  1. Customer churn. Unhappy customers are more likely to jump ship. Customer churn is a real risk when you consistently miss delivery dates.
  1. High stress and low morale. Inside your organization, missed OTD targets can lead to stressed-out teams and low morale. No one enjoys firefighting and playing catch-up.

Figuring out how to tackle OTD problems can feel confusing at best and totally overwhelming at worst. But don’t worry. We’re here to help you breathe easy.

Let’s get on the same page about what OTD entails and then let’s get into the strategies to regain control over your operations and hit every single target.

What Is OTD (And Why Does It Matter?)

On-time delivery is your ability as a manufacturer to deliver products or goods to customers exactly when you promised or when they expected them. Essentially, it's all about fulfilling delivery commitments without any delays.

Measuring OTD can be done in various ways, depending on your processes and goals. You can track the percentage of on-time shipments (the most common method), absolute number of days delayed, or monetary backlog.

As for why it matters, there are a few crucial implications.

Customer Satisfaction and Retention

Satisfied customers are more likely to stick around. Meeting delivery commitments enhances their experience, keeping them loyal.

Building Trust and Brand Reputation

Consistent on-time delivery builds trust and a solid reputation, attracting new customers through positive word-of-mouth.

Competitive Advantage

Reliable suppliers gain a competitive edge, as customers prefer partners who consistently meet delivery requirements.

Reduced Costs

Delays can lead to increased costs, like expedited shipping or late delivery penalties. Meeting deadlines can help you keep expenses in check.

How to Regain Control and Meet Deadlines Consistently

Okay, now it’s time to get you back on track. These are the steps you’ll need to get your operations running smoothly and delight your customers. 

Identify Problem Areas

The first step is to identify which parts and jobs are not meeting your standards or on-time delivery targets. You can't fix what you don't know is broken.

Conduct Root Cause Analysis 

Use your shop data to dig deep and find the root causes of your delivery issues. This isn't about placing blame; it's about understanding the issues at their core.

Use Insights for Continuous Improvement

Once you've identified the problems, kickstart a continuous improvement project. Improve operations, streamline production, and commit to delivering on time consistently.

Amper: Ship Parts On Time, Every Time

Ready for the game-changer? It’s Amper FactoryOS. With Amper, you can understand what’s going on in your shop and know exactly what to do at any given time to get things back on track. Here’s how:

Alignment with Current Operations

The Target Tracker Dashboard is the best place for a reality check. Here, you can see the status of all your goals in one place. 

Target Tracker Dashboard

See which jobs are running and on which machines, the target end date versus the projected end date, parts remaining, and even why a job may be delayed. This dashboard analyzes job performance based on things like uptime and cycle time.

Planners and supervisors should start their days in the Target Tracker Dashboard to inform any tactical decisions. For example, they might see that a job is 2 days behind because utilization is off. And even when the machine is up, the cycle time is off as well. Does a higher-performing operator need to be assigned to a lagging job? Is there a bigger issue around cycle times that needs to be investigated? These insights will make daily decisions a lot clearer and faster.

Streamlined Communication

Amper FactoryOS helps you improve the flow of information throughout your shop and with customers.

Operators can keep track of production in real time with Copilot, Amper’s operator interface. When they log in to their tally sheet, they simply select the goal they’ll be working on. All the job details will automatically populate.

In Copilot, operators can keep tabs on the current and expected numbers for parts, cycle time, uptime, and more. They’ll also see the target and projected end date for a job. This means there’s no question about whether they’re on track to hit their shift’s targets.

Similar production data is also available to everyone in the shop who can see the Scoreboard screen. The Scoreboard displays all active goals and color codes them to indicate if they’re on-  or off-target. This makes it easy to see that something needs to change to get back on track.

Ready to take control of your OTD targets? 

Schedule a demo with Amper and look forward to meeting production goals with confidence.

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