– An alphabet cocktail for manufacturing, maintenance and production

The goal of any manufacturer and production organization is fairly simple, get the most out of your equipment (assets), while producing quality goods. So how and where do each of the ingredients of the alphabet cocktail come into play?

api pro cmms oee eam tpm

CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management System) is the absolute life blood of any top maintenance organization. You must be able to track who is doing what on each piece of equipment (asset), what was done, what parts were used, etc. You should be able to track your inventory, schedule your preventive maintenance as well as break fix and of course this should all be able to be completed on a mobile device. CMMS is the first key ingredient in the alphabet cocktail.

Top of the line CMMS systems have grown into much more incorporating EAM (Enterprise Asset Management). An EAM system takes things to the next level by tracking everything around the entire lifecycle of the asset. When was it purchased and from who, what sort of warranty is in place, tracking overhauls, depreciations as well of course all of the things a CMMS solution provides.

So now you are tracking everything you need to know about your equipment (asset) with a CMMS/EAM solution or are you? No the next key ingredient in the alphabet cocktail is OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness). It is one thing to fix your equipment when it breaks down or better yet try to prevent those breakdowns with an aggressive preventive maintenance program. Let’s remember one of the key goals of manufacturing and production is to get the most out of your equipment (assets).  This is where an OEE System comes into play.

The history of OEE can be traced back to metrics developed by Seiichi Nakajima in Japan during the 1960s to evaluate how effectively a manufacturing operation is utilized. OEE is based on availability, performance and quality rate.

Measurement of Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE), is becoming widely accepted as an overall measure of manufacturing effectiveness. However, when correctly applied, OEE is much more than a management benchmark. It is a powerful troubleshooting tool that identifies areas for improvement at the functional level.

It is important to remember that OEE is part of an overall improvement program and NOT just another KPI to measure. OEE is at its best when it is focused on one single asset or a synchronized line. Of course there are numerous studies of what a “World Class” OEE number is for a manufacturer or production operation. These “World Class” numbers should not be used as a benchmark. Remember OEE is about attaining improvements. A “World Class” continuous production operation might have an OEE number in the 90’s, but if you take your operation from the low 40’s up to the 60’s you have achieved a 50% improvement!

What can your maintenance program and your CMMS/EAM do to contribute to improving OEE’s three keys of availability, performance and quality?

That brings us to the fourth ingredient in our alphabet cocktail, TPM (Total Productive Maintenance). TPM is a plant improvement methodology which enables continuous and rapid improvement of the manufacturing process through use of employee involvement, employee empowerment, and closed-loop measurement of results (OEE). TPM is about bringing things full circle back to your CMMS and your PM program. The key though is, now it is not just seen as a maintenance department function. The focus is how you maintain your equipment throughout its life cycle. This requires the buy in from top management as well as front line production staff and operators. Production operators for example can and should be trained on simple preventive maintenance activities such as lubrications, how to note and track those activities within your CMMS.

People, culture and attitude
Remember when we talk about OEE and TPM we are not talking about a technical IT-project, sure technology will and does play a key role but more importantly we are talking about people, culture and attitude within your manufacturing operation. OEE and TPM projects need to have clearly focused primary financial business goals such as reduce scrap, reduce short stoppages and improve lead times. OEE and TPM are about continuous improvement in your manufacturing and production environment.

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