Get the Most from a Performance Management System

A good performance management system aligns, monitors, measures, and makes visible all operations activities and outcomes throughout an organization. The system guides managers and frontline associates and allows them to make informed decisions — and then measure how well (or poorly) those decisions turned out. A good performance management system aligns, monitors, measures, and makes visible all operations activities and outcomes throughout an organization. The system guides managers and frontline associates and allows them to make informed decisions — and then measure how well (or poorly) those decisions turned out.

Most process plants (88 percent) have a documented performance management system in place, according to the PSbyM Process Industries Performance Study, conducted by Performance Solutions by Milliken. The study also found that executives at many plants indicate that their performance management systems have improved plant performances:

  • Quality — 89 percent
  • Productivity — 87 percent
  • Safety — 86 percent
  • Speed/Throughput — 86 percent
  • Customer satisfaction — 86 percent
  • Cost management — 83 percent
  • Uptime/reliability — 82 percent
  • Innovation — 78 percent
  • Environmental compliance — 73 percent

Yet metrics over the past year at many of these same process plants tell a different story. For example, 13 percent of plants report an OSHA recordable incident rate of 50 or higher; 20 percent have complete-and-on-time delivery rates of 50 percent or worse; and 41 percent report machine uptime rates (as a percentage of scheduled uptime) of 70 percent or lower. This raises questions: Are the right performance management systems in place? Are the systems actively followed? Or are they merely outdated reporting procedures ignored by frontline managers and associates?

Ineffective performance management systems waste time and resources. Imagine the hidden employee and production capacity available if these plants deployed leading-edge systems to transform quality, delivery, EHS, and equipment-maintenance practices.

Fortunately, there’s a better way.

Milliken & Company, a global diversified manufacturer and service provider in operation since 1865, has relied on the Milliken Performance System (MPS) to achieve exceptional process performances for decades. The system is characterized by a foundation of safety and strategic clarity (i.e., identifying and executing improvements most beneficial to the organization) and supported by nine pillars (principles):

  • Continuous skills development
  • Daily team maintenance
  • 5S
  • Focused improvement
  • Production control
  • Planned maintenance
  • Quality management
  • Early equipment management
  • Concurrent new product development DFSS (Design for Six Sigma)

Performance Solutions by Milliken, the operations consultancy of Milliken & Company, has brought MPS to hundreds of organizations around the globe — some implementing MPS-like systems and others applying missing MPS pillars to adapt and improve their existing systems. MPS has helped manufacturers to properly manage equipment, improve associate skills and knowledge, and develop preventive and predictive maintenance practices that lead to dramatic operations outcomes.

MPS is a core component of Performance Solutions’ proven path for operations transformation, which moves through six phases:

  • Accommodate, educate, demonstrate: Company executives visit Milliken facilities, learn about MPS, and then observe the system in action (and the results achieved).
  • Assessment: Performance Solutions practitioners analyze a company’s overall operations, evaluate current systems against MPS pillar processes and criteria, assess company culture, and then document gaps and strengths.
  • Master plan: Practitioners and company executives establish a plan to systematically address weaknesses and develop a rollout schedule to achieve agreed-upon goals; the plan’s nomenclature is company-specific so that it resonates with management and employees.
  • Plant implementation plan: The initial plant(s) is/are identified to adopt the improvement system, and a plan developed to standardize processes across the plant(s).
  • Model: A specific area, line, or piece of equipment within the selected plant begins the transformation; the model is selected based on criteria including urgency, capacity to replicate standards to other areas, and ability to completely improve the area.
  • Replication: Once the model area is transformed, the new concepts, standards, and aides (e.g., technical sheets, standard work sheets, equipment guides) are deployed to other areas within the plant, and the overall plant transformation gains in speed and performance improvement.

The PSbyM Process Industries Performance Study highlights a gap between what executives at process plants think is occurring and what’s actually happening on the plant floor. Is your performance management system delivering the results your company needs? If not, sign up here to receive more study news and analysis and to learn how Performance Solutions by Milliken can bring the power of MPS to your facilities.

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