Kitting Best Practices
The value of a storeroom is often seen as just the parts that are kept on the shelves. But a storeroom should go beyond simple stocking and handing out parts so that it becomes a valuable member of the Maintenance and Production teams. One of those ways is through Kitting.
The Kitting process is an easy way to get shifts started faster, jobs done on time, and ensuring a cleaner maintenance schedule. There is no excuse to have scheduled work that has insufficient parts available (baring machine down situations that require plans to change). So, what is Kitting? Kitting is a process that involves a cross functional team of maintenance, purchasing, and operations, but the stockroom is the hub and can take the lead to ensure that everything runs smoothly. Here is the process for how Kitting works:
- First, the maintenance planner or scheduler identifies Work Orders that need to be completed that require parts to complete.
- From there he sends them to the buyer, who checks the balance on hand against the amount required.
- Since this is planned work, and not critical or machine down work, the on hand inventory should not be reduced to the point where a lack of inventory could cause an extended downtime situation.
- If an order needs to be placed, either due to the part being a non-stock or there being insufficient quantity on hand, the PO is placed and tagged with the Work Order number.
- The person (or people) doing the receiving should also be the person responsible for kitting. That way all kitting activity can be done once the daily receiving is completed.
- Once all parts are in, the stockroom attendant will pull each item, disburse them to the proper Work Order, assign them a Kit number, and place them in an area separate from the storeroom that is easily accessible to maintenance.
- Then the Work Order number and the Kit number are reported back to the Maintenance planners so that they can put the Work Order on the schedule.
- The storeroom should track and report the time to kit an order for both stock and non-stock as well as the fill rate for parts. Also, any abnormalities should be reported back to the group so that issues can be quickly resolved and safeguards put in place for the future.
A few notes about the process:
- We find that it is best practice to wait and kit everything complete, and not to make partial kits. This keeps the inventory available to day-to-day operations for as long as possible.
- Buyers should keep copies of pending Work Orders and check on hand balances to see if other orders or current orders should be tagged with a number.
- A regular meeting schedule should be kept between the buyer, planner, and storeroom lead so that communication is upheld and issues resolved. Twice a month is a frequency that we find sufficient.
At Martin, we specialize in implementing these types of storeroom solutions that help companies operate better. To learn more about our Integrated Supply line of business click here, or contact us directly to speak to someone about learning more.
Martin Corporate Headquarters
125 North Court Street
Florence, AL 35630
P: (800) 828-8116