Work smarter: Improve your OEE with solutions from NT CADCAM

During the recession, a lot of traditional manufacturing businesses didn't have the money to pump into shop-floor improvements. But, by not keeping up with the latest trends, the UK's efficiency rates have fallen and with other European countries stepping up the pace, we need to up our game.

If a company has only got 10 machines, often it can be difficult to justify the costs of investing in a Six Sigma or Lean Manufacturing expert. But, by not keeping up with the latest trends, the UK’s efficiency rates have fallen and with Brexit we cannot afford to keep treading water.

While other countries embraced new technologies and manufacturing trends, many UK manufacturers have remained on the side lines. It’s a scenario that has seen our manufacturing efficiency rates drop in the last 15-20 years. Latest figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show we are 24 percentage points behind Germany and 18 behind France in our output per hour rates.

Companies including Jaguar Land Rover, Nissan and Toyota have continued to invest time and money in state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities and business improvement software to achieve Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE) rates of 70-90%. However, smaller UK plants have not and are languishing behind with unmonitored machines achieving just 30% or lower of their optimal output.

While Performance Improvement Management software (PIM) is not a new concept, its application on the shop-floor has been a long time coming. Up until now, engineers either monitored efficiency output rates by paper or via expensive ERP driven solutions. Now, investing in a PIM solution is a cost-effective reality.

Dean Flaherty, manufacturing engineering consultant at NT CADCAM, says: “By implementing our software on machines, we are seeing customers’ OEE rates improve by 10-20% straight off. Then, when we start implanting root cause analysis, the room for improvement is massive and we are seeing improved OEE levels of 60-90 per cent.”

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