Toward Zero Blog

Performance Improvement: When Conditions Change, Find a Hidden Factory

Manufacturers are always eager to balance efficiency, reputation, and the many other factors that affect overall business performance.  Everyone agrees that performance improvement in manufacturing operations is one powerful tool companies leverage to achieve their strategic business objectives.  Even when there’s a status quo in market conditions, regulatory requirements, and other factors, nearly every manufacturing enterprise is doing something to improve manufacturing performance.  When something happens to disrupt circumstances — whether it affects just your business, many companies, or an entire group — there’s no doubt you’ll respond to your company’s best advantage.  But will you also use the experience to uncover “the hidden factory,” and discover new ways to create capacity without adding equipment?

Quality Management in Manufacturing: Paperless Quality

There are many well-documented benefits of digital factory and paperless quality initiatives for manufacturing plants.  A paperless quality system reduces costs, facilitates faster implementation of changes, provides tighter change management control, and makes quality data available for reporting and analytics systems.  Ultimately, paperless quality is already a large part of the Industry 4.0 value proposition.  As technology costs continue to drop, companies are prioritizing paperless quality initiatives.  However, many organizations struggle to migrate from their existing system to paperless quality in manufacturing.

OEE: 3 Questions Clients Always Ask, and 4 They Should (but Don’t)

Manufacturing companies are still eager to use OEE.  Some industry analysts say that it's “dead,” but not everyone in manufacturing agrees.  Yes, it’s high-level, and as a standalone metric it’s not particularly actionable.  However it’s also a powerful measurement that nearly anyone in a company can quickly digest and use as a starting point to uncover why things aren’t going the way they’re supposed to.  That’s not to say that OEE hasn’t been the subject of significant debate — and even angst — since it first made an appearance in Seiichi Nakajima's 1982 book TPM Tenkai. (later published as Introduction to TPM: Total Productive Maintenance, also by Seiichi Nakajima).

Mirror Image: Manufacturing Execs, Private Equity Firms Both Seeking Value Creation

It doesn’t matter if it’s a manufacturing company looking for an investment partner, or a private equity company looking for an investment in the manufacturing sector.  Either way, it takes an expert in manufacturing enterprise operational excellence to identify, quantify, and prioritize operational improvement opportunities to deliver high ROI.

Exploring Catalyst to Reduce MES Risk

Take any hundred companies who are exploring the deployment of Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES), follow them through 5 years, and here's what you'll find:

An unexpected move Toward Zero™

Last year, a tier 1 automotive supplier moved Toward Zero™ unplanned downtime by implementing a system to monitor machine tool performance. The results were surprising.

Ingredients of Giveaway Reduction

The Challenge:

A food ingredient company in the Midwest was losing product in there manufacturing process, but couldn't see where the product was going.

Pumping the data

The Challenge:

An automotive transmission pump manufacturer was experiencing frequent micro-downtime events with an unknown cause.  

1

Performance Improvement: When Conditions Change, Find a Hidden Factory

Manufacturers are always eager to balance efficiency, reputation, and the many other factors that affect overall business performance.  Everyone agrees that performance improvement in manufacturing operations is one powerful tool companies leverage to achieve their strategic business objectives.  Even when there’s a status quo in market conditions, regulatory requirements, and other factors, nearly every manufacturing enterprise is doing something to improve manufacturing performance.  When something happens to disrupt circumstances — whether it affects just your business, many companies, or an entire group — there’s no doubt you’ll respond to your company’s best advantage.  But will you also use the experience to uncover “the hidden factory,” and discover new ways to create capacity without adding equipment?

Quality Management in Manufacturing: Paperless Quality

There are many well-documented benefits of digital factory and paperless quality initiatives for manufacturing plants.  A paperless quality system reduces costs, facilitates faster implementation of changes, provides tighter change management control, and makes quality data available for reporting and analytics systems.  Ultimately, paperless quality is already a large part of the Industry 4.0 value proposition.  As technology costs continue to drop, companies are prioritizing paperless quality initiatives.  However, many organizations struggle to migrate from their existing system to paperless quality in manufacturing.

OEE: 3 Questions Clients Always Ask, and 4 They Should (but Don’t)

Manufacturing companies are still eager to use OEE.  Some industry analysts say that it's “dead,” but not everyone in manufacturing agrees.  Yes, it’s high-level, and as a standalone metric it’s not particularly actionable.  However it’s also a powerful measurement that nearly anyone in a company can quickly digest and use as a starting point to uncover why things aren’t going the way they’re supposed to.  That’s not to say that OEE hasn’t been the subject of significant debate — and even angst — since it first made an appearance in Seiichi Nakajima's 1982 book TPM Tenkai. (later published as Introduction to TPM: Total Productive Maintenance, also by Seiichi Nakajima).

Mirror Image: Manufacturing Execs, Private Equity Firms Both Seeking Value Creation

It doesn’t matter if it’s a manufacturing company looking for an investment partner, or a private equity company looking for an investment in the manufacturing sector.  Either way, it takes an expert in manufacturing enterprise operational excellence to identify, quantify, and prioritize operational improvement opportunities to deliver high ROI.

Exploring Catalyst to Reduce MES Risk

Take any hundred companies who are exploring the deployment of Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES), follow them through 5 years, and here's what you'll find:

An unexpected move Toward Zero™

Last year, a tier 1 automotive supplier moved Toward Zero™ unplanned downtime by implementing a system to monitor machine tool performance. The results were surprising.

Ingredients of Giveaway Reduction

The Challenge:

A food ingredient company in the Midwest was losing product in there manufacturing process, but couldn't see where the product was going.

Pumping the data

The Challenge:

An automotive transmission pump manufacturer was experiencing frequent micro-downtime events with an unknown cause.  

1