The Not So Tall Tales of 3rd Shift Harry

In all the years we’ve been working with batch and process manufacturers, it seems everyone almost always has a story about a particular, challenging employee. Through these anecdotes, we’ve learned a lot about what our customers deal with on a regular basis and the internal issues they sometimes must overcome – often because of one particular person.

You may be thinking, ‘Who is this elusive individual?’ Around Deacom, they’ve come to be known as 3rd Shift Harry.

He’s your warehouse worker or production guy. Maybe he is one of your cycle counters, a picker, or pallet stacker. For the most part, Harry is a good person, but he makes mistakes more often than we wish to admit. Sometimes he cuts corners and other times he’s not following directions. Whether it is because he is new, inexperienced, improperly trained, or even lazy, Harry is often the cause of many headaches for the back office.

All kidding aside, some examples of the major issues we’re talking about include:

  • Grabbing the newest lot of material to put into a batch because it’s closer than a lot due to expire tomorrow.
  • Pouring the wrong raw materials into a kettle – ruining the entire batch.
  • Shipping customer lots that have not been released by the quality assurance team.
  • Picking a lot that does not meet a customer’s shelf life requirements.
  • Adding the wrong Certificate of Analysis document to a customer shipment.
  • Moving inventory while a cycle count is taking place.

So, how does DEACOM make sure 3rd Shift Harry doesn’t impact your operations? Two words: Process Control.

We define process control as a set of scalable and repeatable procedures. Covering everything from formulation to shipment, these are put in place to ensure that you as a manufacturer do the things you say you’re going to do – no matter who is working, what time it is, or what product is being produced. In our view, strong process control is the foundation that our single-system ERP solution is built upon.

Throughout this series of posts, we’re going to be introducing some of our favorite 3rd Shift Harry stories. Digging deeper, we’ll shed light on the various process controls that we’ve built into our ERP software to help prevent these types of scenarios from happening when someone tries to bypass procedures. You’ll learn about some of the tools and settings within DEACOM that you can implement to make sure the horror stories of 3rd Shift Harry become a thing of the past.

About the author

Global Digital Marketing Director at

Domenick Naccarato has been a featured writer on the Deacom blog for the past 8 years sharing his insight into manufacturing best practice techniques, conversations with customers, and videos of Deacom ERP experts and users.