In order to streamline the production process and ensure quality control standards are consistently being met, manufacturers must rely on specific strategies. A pull system is one such approach taken by a wide array of companies in this field, and it is designed to keep production waste at a bare minimum.
Every year, an untold amount of resources are used inefficiently, the vast majority of them discarded long before they should be. The concept of the pull system is to maximize the lifespan of all the components used during the manufacturing stage, so as to save money and guarantee healthy profit margins.
Understanding the Logic Behind Pull System Manufacturing
In theory, this is one of the most basic methods of manufacturing, yet it remains highly misunderstood and misapplied in this day in age. The end goal for any company is to sell as many products as possible, and it is in this sense that pull system strategies act as a failsafe of sorts.
The purpose is to allocate all of one’s resources to the creation of products that will sell right away, thereby ensuring an instant profit. This is one subset of the principle of supply and demand; instead of producing a surplus that may or may not sell in the short term (dependent on market conditions), the business focuses on the immediate need of its consumers. The products are essentially pulled through the manufacturing process via customer demand, instead of produced before the fact.
Why Pull Systems are Advantageous for a Company’s Bottom Line
Push systems, on the other hand, exist on the exact opposite end of the spectrum. This type of manufacturing is based solely on forecasted, or predicted, demand. While it has indeed been useful for businesses that have a clear understanding of their clients’ needs, ones which are steady and predictable, this type of system is not always in the best interest of all manufacturers.
The primary benefit of utilizing a pull system strategy is the sheer elimination of waste and overproduction. In the event of market slowdown, companies never have to worry about creating too large of a supply, something which can be and has been downright disastrous for numerous businesses.
As well, quality control standards tend to be much higher with companies that utilize pull systems, namely because their inventory count is so low and greater attention can be given to each individual product. It is the flexibility of this type of manufacturing system that offers the ultimate benefit.