Manufacturing tours have become more important now than ever before. It’s not just to show off the facility to safety inspectors. It’s about highlighting what you do to investors and even showcasing your company to those on the outside who are interested. There’s no limit to why you might want to offer tours of manufacturing facilities. You just need to understand how to do it and give the best tour possible.
Our Best Practices for giving Tours of Manufacturing Facilities
Winging a manufacturing tour is a bad idea. Instead, here are some of our best practices for giving tours of manufacturing facilities to ensure you and your guests have the best tour possible.
Manufacturing plants can get loud. And even if you don’t have major machinery running within the plant, it’s likely large, which means your voice will carry. It can be challenging for those in your tour group to hear you, and elevating your voice will only strain your voice, especially if you give multiple tours a day. Instead, you need to take advantage of audio equipment. With the right audio equipment, you can ensure your guests can always hear what you have to say.
There are several audio configurations you’ll need to consider. First, is it quiet enough where you only need something to amplify your voice? In this setup, you can use a microphone and a small, portable speaker. This is easy to walk around with and will allow you to adjust the volume level based on your group.
In other instances, your manufacturing plant will be loud, and talking into a microphone alone will not help. You talk into the microphone will compete with that of the plant noise, so you’ll need to do something else to ensure you’re able to remain in communication with your guests. To do this, you may want to consider a headset system. Your guests will wear headsets, so they will hear it directly through their headphones when you talk into the microphone. Some headphones also have noise-canceling technology to help reduce the outside noise. Many of these headphones can also be worn with hard hats, which helps with any kind of safety protocol.
Keep Your Manufacturing Facility Clean
You should be doing this in the first place anyway, as a dirty production plant is ripe for workplace injuries (not to mention it increases machinery breaking). However, you need to make sure you stay on top of cleaning your plant if you are to give tours. These individuals on your tours are not familiar with the plant, which means they don’t know when a step is coming or when there’s a surface that’s sometimes slippery. It is up to you to take care of this and to keep it clean. No good comes out of an injured guest. There might be legal ramifications from it, and at the very least, if they are investors, they will probably pull funding. There’s also a chance they will spread the word of your dirty plant, which can leak out to other possible investors. Avoid all of this by keeping your plant clean.
Let Employees Know There Will Be Tours
If tours are new or an unusual occurrence with your plant, you will want to make sure your employees know there will be tours. This way, they will know there will be extra people on the production floor they’ll need to account for. If they are used to nobody else in their section, they might take longer steps or move with heavy machinery without watching. So, giving them a heads up on this should help avoid these kinds of problems.
Practice Your Tour
Practice makes perfect, and this is the case with giving your tour. Don’t worry if the first time you give a tour, you forget a few things along the way or even if you’re a bit nervous. It can take some time to get accustomed to. Having note cards on hand when starting with these tours is the right way to remember what you want to talk about. The longer you give the tours, and the more you offer, the easier it will be to remember what you want to do and say.
If you’re just starting in the world of giving tours, you should run through a few dry runs and have other employees go on for the tour. You may even want to bring in some family members or volunteers from the outside. It helps to bring someone from the outside in for the tours as they won’t know what you’re explaining, so they can tell you if what you’re going over makes sense. They can also ask you questions that you’ll likely receive from visitors. It’s always helpful to know what kind of questions might come. You can address these questions before they even ask them, or at the very least, you’ll know how to respond when they ask you.
Always be willing to make adjustments to the tour as you discover what people want to see and what they want to hear. You may also find it is best to offer different tours. Perhaps there is a tour you give for investors different from the tours you give from general visitors. There’s nothing that says you can’t have multiple tours. You just need to tweak as you go along, and you find out what works.
A Little Planning Goes A Long Way
It doesn’t need to take a lot of work to give the best manufacturing tour possible. You just need to put in proper planning and have the right access to equipment. If your guests cannot hear what you say while giving the tour, it will be all for not. Here at Plant-Tours, we are here to help connect you with the right audio equipment. So no matter what kind of business you run or your manufacturing facility’s size, you’ll always be able to deliver the information your guests need in a way they can hear.