In these competitive times, continuous improvement is crucial, but it’s not always easy to pinpoint where the biggest benefits lie. How can you prioritize manufacturing improvement opportunities to ensure maximum value to the business? This Buyer’s Guide points to an array of software characteristics to support such decisions. You need digital means to support greater confidence in your decisions about which projects to fund when.
Please enjoy the summary below. For the full buyer’s guide please visit our sponsor, PTC (registration required).
For related content, A New Era of Continuous Improvement, shares results from manufacturers, consultants, and associations to validate the continuous improvement (CI) notions in the white paper; our eBook, Getting Beyond Percentages to Insights with OEE, shares insights on how your overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) metrics could accelerate improvement; and find out the difference between a typical continuous improvement program and one that’s better in our Improving Continuous Improvement infographic.
Table of Contents
- Evaluation Criteria
- Urgency to Improve Manufacturing Productivity
- Current Situation
- Prioritizing Manufacturing Productivity Opportunities
- Functionality for Prioritizing Opportunities
- Analytics for Clear Action
- Technology Considerations
- Evaluating Software Partners
- Implementation Factors
- Software Investment Priorities
- Maximum Value for Productivity Projects
Urgency to Improve Manufacturing Productivity
Most manufacturers are in competitive markets with supply chain challenges. With so much out of the company’s control, it’s vital to leverage production resources such as facilities, equipment, people, materials, and tools effectively. Today’s environment of great uncertainty makes this more complex and crucial to success.
Needs Expand with the Move to the Digital Enterprise
Productivity is all about minimizing losses – and time is the obvious way to measure those losses. The impacts of lost time are not just on the production operation itself. Time losses can be quantified in terms of impact on profit and customer service. Capacity-constrained companies can sell as much as they can make, so it’s a top-line issue for revenues. For these companies, it also determines when they can promise and deliver orders to customers.Even when not capacity constrained, time losses can impact costs and customer satisfaction. In some cases, companies could lower materials, assets, energy, quality, compliance, and payroll costs.
Yet, calculating where to focus to stem those time losses is not straightforward since many sources of waste contribute to throughput and productivity losses. Continuous Improvement (CI) is a common process manufacturers use to identify and eliminate waste to improve performance. It may be called Lean, Six Sigma, Operational Excellence, or other names. In these trying times, CI programs can feed success – particularly if they have balanced characteristics and digital support.
Prioritizing Manufacturing Productivity Opportunities
As the term prioritizing suggests, what is new here is that the software is not just measuring performance but ranking opportunities for improvement. By seeking prioritization, you get support to focus resources and attention, which can be challenging with traditional manufacturing intelligence, OEE, or dashboard software.
Readying for Action
In addition to prioritizing opportunities, seek out software that provides a reason drill-down for each problem. This ability to deliver deeper insights into root causes can transform challenges into opportunities
One Application, Many Roles
Seek a software system that can support multiple user profiles:
- Executives and Managers for comparing plants, products, and investment in CI programs
- CI leads for plotting priorities and tracking progress
- Supervisors for focusing on how to improve in their area
- Operators and Technicians to focus, buy in, and see what’s working and how much time they can save
When all these roles use the same application, it fosters collaboration and eliminates bias and mistrust.
This summary is an abbreviated version of the research and does not contain the full content. For the full research, please visit our sponsor PTC (registration required).
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