How Can You Streamline Your Cleanroom Workflow?
Your cleanroom workflow sets the tone for your production and ultimately impacts your yield. Making the effort to streamline your cleanroom workflow might take some time in the process but will ultimately save you time, money, and increase your productivity.
So what are some steps you can take to streamline your workflow?
Integrate Technology Into Your Cleanroom
We love the new technology coming out in the cleanroom world! And this doesn’t just involve setting, meeting, and beating new industry standards for particle filtration, but also includes a vast array of technology.
Just like our phones make it easier for us to navigate our everyday lives, new technology makes it easier to monitor and maintain cleanrooms. We recommend real-time monitoring systems to watch for particles and water pollution. But technology can also be used to help monitor equipment and materials entering the cleanroom, as well as decreasing the number of items that must enter the cleanroom, and make it easier to store information and promote collaboration between team members inside and outside of the room.
Maximize Your Gowning Protocol
Your gowning protocol plays a large role in the cleanroom’s exposure to particles, which can lead to stopping production and yield loss. So make sure your gowning protocol is simple, explanatory, and set up for ease, so that anyone who enters the cleanroom is able to walk through the process.
Use Easy To Clean Equipment And Materials
Materials used to construct cleanrooms, as well as equipment and materials used in cleanrooms, should be made from non-porous materials that can be easily sanitized. While this should be the reality from the start, some cleanroom managers haven’t made this move yet - especially for equipment that enters the cleanroom, including cleaning tools.
Another part to this is having a regular cleaning routine for these pieces of equipment. This routine will keep equipment clean to stop particle contamination from slowing the workflow.
Look To Simplify
Why make things more complicated than they need to be? Transition to equipment that has the capability to all run on the same Standards of Practice (SOPs). And consider using equipment with simple connectivity options that’s also user friendly. You can also use equipment that monitors itself and takes less work on your end - such as equipment with self diagnostics options.
We work in complicated industries, so we don’t need to make things more complicated than necessary.
Some industries might require paper back-ups, but, for the most part, digital storage options are the preferred methods in 2021. This will also streamline your cleanroom workflow as it’ll make it easier for teams inside and outside the cleanroom to collaborate on the same document simultaneously.
Use Real-Time Monitoring Particle Counters
This is by far our best tip for streamlining your cleanroom workflow. Real-time monitoring allows for you to know immediately if your cleanroom has an unacceptable level or size of particles. If your cleanroom does become contaminated, you’ll know immediately and be able to address the issue at once.
Since you’ll be able to stop production the moment contamination becomes an issue, you’ll extremely limit your yield loss and get production up and running as soon as possible.
Additionally, this is an automated process, which takes one more task off your plate.
Perform Daily Cleaning
We mentioned it earlier, but we’ll say it again: regular cleaning of a cleanroom is incredibly important. This might seem like a more time consuming task that won’t streamline your cleanroom, but the reverse is true.
Include a cleaning routine in your daily tasks and take the time now to outline what your employee should use to clean, what they should clean, and how to clean it. This practice will become like second nature and will, ultimately, streamline your workflow and prevent unnecessary stops to decontaminate the room or clean equipment.
Use Traceable GMPs
Good Manufacturing Practices (GMPs) are different from industry to industry. For instance, the food industry has been regulated by some form of GMP since the mid-1800s and is now regulated by the Food And Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA also establishes GMPs for the pharmaceutical industry.
So why should you trace your GMPs in your cleanroom? This will help with your documentation to show you are following all specified guidelines. You are on the hook for following guidelines and proving that your practices are acceptable. An audit trail - including who is responsible for each change - is an important piece of this.
How can you make this process simpler for you? You can use equipment that implements traceable GMPs and integrates this at a base level.
Extend Equipment Lifetimes
This doesn’t just mean investing in equipment with warranties and guarantees, as well as from companies with a proven track record of long-lasting equipment, but also using equipment with long battery lives. The less time you have to spend charging or changing batteries, the more you can spend working.
Choose Equipment That Will Work For You
The best thing you can do to streamline your cleanroom workflow is to invest in equipment that works for you and promotes optimization of the cleanroom.
Take the Apex Z for example. It’s built from non-porous, easy to clean materials, so it’s free from particle traps. It’s a quiet, real-time particle counter with the largest battery life and shortest recharge time on the market. It’s small and light, so anyone can use it.
And it’s self diagnostics and traceable GMP workflow approach to collecting data takes the burden off of the personnel.
Not to mention it is designed with ease of use at the forefront of mind - with efficiency and simple connectivity, paperless data management, and easy file transfers. The programmable SOPs and SOP driven workflow make it very customizable.
This is a piece of equipment designed to streamline your cleanroom workflow and take the burden of particle counting off your plate. So you can simply know that your cleanroom is being carefully monitored and you’ll be alerted immediately if something is off.
And that’s how we believe a cleanroom should flow.
Want to learn more about how the Apex Z could change your cleanroom workflow? Contact us today .