Communication is one of the most critical aspects of a workplace. It is especially critical in an environment that focuses primarily on productivity and human effort. Manufacturing communication can have an enormous impact on the efficiency of industrial workers and the success of a manufacturing business.
Many manufacturing industry employers rely on automation to manage workload and enhance the efficiency of workers, but the key to workplace efficiency and productivity is communication.
Why is Communication So Vital in the Manufacturing Industry?
Here’s how effective communication can benefit manufacturing companies:
- Increase production efficiency: Clear, ongoing communication helps people become more efficient in their jobs. For instance, if a machine fails, effective communication can help workers address the issue and get back to work quickly. Research shows that connected employees can boost productivity in the organization by up to 25%.
- Reduce workplace-related risks: Effective communication can come in handy in the case of an accident or injury at the manufacturing site, especially when workers are operating heavy machinery. With proper communication among the staff, accidents and injuries can be handled promptly – or prevented.
- Better engagement and teamwork: One of the most significant benefits of effective communication is teamwork. By creating an environment of continuous communication and collaboration for industrial workers, you can pave the way for higher employee retention and engagement.
- Mitigation of conflicts: Lack of communication is one of the primary reasons behind conflict in manufacturing businesses. With adequate communication, information can be dispensed in an organized manner, making it easy and clear to understand.
- Talented workforce: Communication not only fosters better productivity but also a talented workforce. A work environment that communicates effectively is a safe place for workers to express their ideas. Moreover, workers will feel more confident in taking up new challenges and projects. The International Journal of Business Communication published a study in which 354 managers were asked to list incompetencies when hiring new employees. The study showed that the most desirable quality in a new hire is effective communication skills.
How Poor Communication Can Damage the Future of a Manufacturing Business
Lack of communication between management and workers can lead to inefficiency, reduced productivity, poor product quality, and unhappy customers. Therefore, improving communication within a manufacturing business can also result in financial benefits. Research shows that better communication can enhance a company’s bottom line by almost 10%.
Before you think through your communication strategy, it’s important to be clear on what “effective communication” means – specifically, clear messages and an appropriate channel for delivering information. Both workers and managers need to be effective communicators.
An effective communicator is someone who:
- Knows what they want to say
- Chooses an appropriate communication channel
- Selects the correct words and uses an appropriate tone to convey their ideas and thoughts
- Demonstrates receptiveness toward feedback
- Waits for the right time to communicate
Implementing an Effective Manufacturing Communication Plan
Here are some useful tips to help you create an effective communication plan in your manufacturing-based organization:
- Provide managers with the necessary tools to communicate with their teams. While managers in manufacturing companies have the required technical and mechanical knowledge, they may not be great communicators by nature. Schedule manager communication training sessions to help them enhance their communication skills.
- Add communication-based training to the existing induction program for new employees.
In addition, it’s a good practice to organize weekly team meetings to create an environment of collaboration. You can also plan monthly or quarterly offsite programs with team-building activities to ensure workers from different teams are communicating with one another.