Capacity Planning for a Service Department

F

fortyfour73

#1
Good day all,

I am looking for advice on Planning for Capacity for our facility. Currently we have had significant growth in our service department and are trying to come up with a capacity measurement.
We manufacture video/audio equipment and get in varying items daily. We have 4 techs in the "cell" currently. Given each piece could take different amounts of time we are running into a wall.

I have looked at other information and got the 100% Utilization with 80% to give 20% buffer, but given different products, not sure how to use this information to be relevant.

Any questions you may have to add please feel free to ask away. We are trying to build a solid system for further growth and open to anything anyone has.

thanks,

Dennis
 
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#2
Howdy Fortyfour,

It sounds like you'll want to rely heavily (though not completely!) on average times, average workloads and investigate the time periods over which to average.

You can't predict everything...that's why a "perfect storm" is perfect...it is the unlikely combination of things that add onto each other.

You may want to look at average man-hours over a weekly, bi-monthly or monthly period and see how far that gets you. Look at how often you are within 10-20% of your highest weekly average, and maybe call that "normal" as far as capacity planning goes.

In a service setting, when workflows are not really predictable, you are often forced to rely on historical data rather than theoretical.
If you do base on historical, set a short time period for reviewing...you have to realize things are ramping up before you get snowed under. At first, perhaps review every three time periods. Then adjust as you have trend data. Even better, make it fast and easy to review your workload, and review every period.

With unpredictable workloads, cross-training can be paramount...service techs can do other things when you're slow...others can help the service techs when you're swamped.

HTH
 
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