Overall equipment effectiveness as a decisive KPI

Why OEE solutions are the basis for smart factories

By using MES solutions, current key figures from all production processes are calculated digitally. If not only numerous machines are involved, but also different production steps and materials as well as the shop floor personnel, then it is not simply a matter of keeping an eye on all this. It is much more a question of orchestrating everything properly.

Many small and large set screws have to be considered, evaluated, and adjusted to ensure the highest possible output (performance), at the highest possible quality, and the lowest downtime of all production resources (availability). This is measured as the overall equipment effectiveness (OEE).

In order for production staff to be able to guarantee this, they need a complete overview. Therefore, the value of OEE, i.e. system effectiveness, is of extreme relevance and is nowadays considered a central communication and control parameter for the production landscape.

Software-based OEE optimization

Paper-based maintenance, planning, and quality acceptance plans are now a thing of the past. The future belongs to algorithm- and cloud-based software solutions to determine and optimize the OEE. In order to get the most out of production, manufacturing companies cannot circumvent the digital implementation of OEE calculation. This is the only way to analyze and optimize coordinated systems and production processes with regard to availability, performance, and quality.

In order to do this, all the necessary production data is brought together in an MES solution. Further data is also required, such as values from the various quality processes in production. Only with a comprehensive OEE software solution and upstream process planning can overall equipment effectiveness be developed in the direction of 100%. This is achieved through complete data transparency of all production-relevant components, employees, and resources.

Transparency over limiting factors and bottlenecks

When used correctly, KPIs create transparency – this also applies to overall equipment effectiveness. Taking into account all relevant data records in production from the areas of availability, performance, and quality, the previous existing factors for an increase in OEE are quickly revealed.

If the speed increases, quality may decrease. If the speed decreases, planned and unplanned downtimes more often become the limiting factor. Software-based OEE solutions make it possible to bring all of this into perfect harmony.

Simplicity in the control of the production facilities through user centricity

Data collection and aggregation only create value if they are prepared in a user-friendly way. Overall equipment effectiveness as a KPI in combination with the digitalization of production offers many value propositions for companies.

User-centered presentation in a comprehensive and integrated software solution creates the desired added value when the employees receive the complicated data sets already prepared based on their roles. This enables them to make the right decisions, either on-site in production or remotely, in order to keep OEE at the best possible level.

Planning reliability in production and delivery through monitoring

Keeping an overview at all times during ongoing production is essential nowadays. The OEE indicator plays an essential role here. It is the essential foundation on which all production process planning is built. The transparency gives the shop floor staff a better understanding of the connections throughout the entire production cycle and enables them to take appropriate measures for optimization.

A glance into a mobile or desktop device is all it takes and, with the help of the overall equipment effectiveness, production employees can make reliable statements about production status and production duration, the time of completion, and the quality of the end products. The set screws that must be turned to make their processes even faster, more effective, and of higher quality are also visible at a glance.

Less downtime and higher quality through OEE optimization

If a production facility always has the OEE in mind, it is much easier to adjust processes in time and to intervene before inferior production batches occur. Detailed historical data on production output and system utilization allows root cause analysis of capacity losses in order to identify areas for improvement.

To optimize plant efficiency in the long term the lean manager, machine operator, and production manager, for example, must work closely together to derive the right measures from the OEE measurement and initiate a continuous improvement process. This results in production processes with:

  • significantly less downtime,
  • reliable planning,
  • more reliable machine running times,
  • more reliable working hours,
  • reduced costs,
  • and increased profits.

System effectiveness as part of TPM

Behind the concept of TPM (total productive maintenance) is the objective of transferring maintenance activities to machine operators in a structured manner. Ideally, production breaks should be used to have maintenance carried out by them. In order for TPM to be fully implemented, it is essential to determine the OEE, including the reasons for downtime.

The OEE analysis shows the weak points of a production facility in detail and is therefore an essential part of TPM processes and solutions. By combining overall equipment effectiveness and TPM, weak points in the production cycle can be analyzed quickly and easily and, ideally, eliminated in time – for a production facility in perfect flow.

How OEE and the smart factory are related

The OEE is a hygiene factor for the actual manufacturing efficiency. However, as with any indicator, it is not only the value that is decisive, but the question of how this value is measured and what must be done to achieve a certain target value.

OEE should never be seen as a silo, but embedded in a digital strategy as a starting point to meet customer needs and to develop further. That’s why we at Germanedge are convinced: the smart factory of tomorrow only has a future if we do our homework today.

OEE with EdgeOne and dSFM

Keeping the production processes properly in flow and at the same time heading towards Industry 4.0, IIoT, and MOM in order to shape the production of the future today, therefore, also always means keeping an eye on the OEE and continuing to work tirelessly on its optimization.

With transparency, monitoring and user centricity, overall equipment effectiveness becomes measurable and feasible. This requires future-proof software solutions. With our MES and MOM platform EdgeOne and the digital Shopfloor Management (dSFM) solution it contains, we provide you with tools to make your OEE visible and controllable.

EdgeOne and the dSFM solution provide all users with exactly the data that is crucial for their respective work through the user-optimized interface. And this not only on site in the production facility or remotely, but also throughout the entire company. Lived and practice-oriented overall equipment effectiveness has a clear advantage in daily competition. With EdgeOne you can benefit from the advantages – from process optimization to daily applications.

Get in touch!

Would you like to know more about our solutions? Then please write me using the contact form. I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Stefan Hagen
Head of Sales Germanedge