Your Data: Use It or Lose It

Canadian Industrial Machinery – November 11, 2014 – By Joe Thompson

Machine monitoring creates data that can be tracked and used to improve efficiency.

Data matters.

Whether it’s a production manufacturing operation or a job shop, measuring the effectiveness of each piece of shop floor equipment using overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) software and data collection tools enables companies to collect data in real time.

But it’s not enough just to collect data; it must be used to make positive change to operational activity.

By examining both real-time and historical data, manufacturers can make changes to the manufacturing process to optimize efficiency. This leads to a reduction in overall costs.

In many shops, machinists track machine usage using a paper form. At the end of each job, or at the end of the day, they write down how long the machine was running and how much time was spent on setup. This enables management to bill the correct amount of hours for a certain job.

While this can produce the information necessary to create an invoice, the results – when compared to the actual, measured data – can vary tremendously.

“I think shops would be very surprised by how much variance there is between their recorded uptime, for example, and the actual data,” explained David McPhail, president and CEO of Memex Automation, Burlington, Ont.

Memex Automation has developed technology that collects real-time OEE information no matter the make, model, or vintage of the machine tool and creates reports, also in real time, that companies can use to optimize manufacturing processes.

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