Calculate Production Machine Efficiency Using Digital Factory Technology

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By Peggy Fonrose - September 03, 2021

When it comes to product machine efficiency, it can be difficult to fine-tune processes, training, and equipment to get the best results. There are several culprits of inefficiency that can keep factories from reaching production goals, but three of the most significant are planned or unplanned downtime, imbalanced and slow process flows, and operator skill and training.

To understand if your production machines are operating and being used as efficiently as possible, you need to calculate their efficiency rates. However, if your food manufacturing factory is still using manual processes to determine efficiency, you’re likely not looking at the real picture. Without becoming a digital factory, it is impossible to tell exactly how efficiently or inefficiently your production machines are operating.

How Real-Time OEE Data & Digital Technology Reveal Real Analytics

Measuring overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) is an important lean manufacturing process and can be a key step when calculating production machine efficiency. What’s most useful about measuring OEE is that it brings together essential KPIs into one score. This gives managers an immediate view of exactly how efficiently the entire plant is operating or targeted results of processes or single machines.

OEE gives managers the tools to calculate productivity based on three key metrics:

  • Availability: Amount of downtime (planned or unplanned) during scheduled production
  • Performance: Speed of production compared to the theoretical fastest time per part
  • Quality: Percentage of faulty parts produced during production time

You can determine accurate OEE for both production machine efficiency and human performance. For example, if your factory uses manual processes on the production line, it is important to ensure all processes are completed as quickly and precisely as possible. Even if all machines are calibrated correctly, if any of the workers who perform the manual line tasks are moving slower than required, it is going to eat away at efficiency.

OEE can also reveal that a machine isn’t operating at its supposed rate—that, despite the calibration, it is not operating as fast as it should be. Variables that could impact the rate of machine operation include issues with materials, product, and labor practices.

Use digital factory technology to get real results.

To obtain a real idea of your factory efficiency, you need a digital factory, which means using digital technology like Worximity’s Smart Factory analytics in the manufacturing process. Using Industry 4.0 technology allows managers to accurately calculate their operations, including worker and machine performance.

The rise of the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) has given factories the power to connect all of their operations and machinery, providing accurate measurement so managers and other stakeholders can plan, prioritize, and implement improvements. Digital factory technology can help managers reveal the hidden causes of downtime, imbalanced and slow process flows, and gaps in operator skills. This could mean recalibrating machinery, repairing machinery, or re-training staff on processes.

Planning is crucial for continuous improvement. 

When it comes to reaching maximum productivity and being maximally efficient on the factory floor, it’s all about planning for continuous improvement. If you have the digital factory technology to help you benchmark where you are, from there it’s about prioritizing and planning goals for continuous improvement.

Talk to an Expert and Discover How Worximity’s Manufacturing Software Solution  Can Improve Your Shop Floor—>>

Productivity: A Measurement of Factory Efficiency

If you get your plant operating at its peak efficiency, you increase production. You’ll never maximize your production—and your company’s potential—if you aren’t taking advantage of all possible operational capabilities. And if you’ve never created a comprehensive continuous improvement plan, you are likely leaving process and machinery improvements all over the factory floor. 

After calculating OEE, you can create benchmarks that will help you identify time- and energy-saving opportunities, prioritize, and set goals. To know where you stand, here are the OEE score standards:

  • 100%: Perfect production; you’re only manufacturing good parts with no stop time
  • 85%: Considered to be world-class; for many companies, this is a reasonable long-term goal
  • 60%: Typical; shows there is a lot of room for improvement
  • 40%: A typical beginner score for factories just starting to track and improve performance

Smart Factory Analytics Can Bring More Production Machine Efficiency

To ensure your factory is operating efficiently, you have to calculate your production metrics, and you need digital factory technology to do that. Once you have the real-time data you need to get comprehensive insight across the factory floor, you can start planning and prioritizing to ensure you increase productivity, the ultimate measure of efficiency.

Worximity’s OEE assessment gives you real-time OEE, benchmarking your efficiency against standards in your industry. Using these insights, managers and other factory stakeholders can see efficiency opportunities and plan to make training, process, and equipment improvements that can shrink unplanned downtime and significantly improve productivity. Get your Worximity OEE trial now.

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Worximity provides simple realtime technologies to solve food processor pains such as downtime, rejects, waste, overtime; helping them gain profit velocity by improving throughput, yield and OEE.

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