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FAQ’s

Frequently Asked Questions

What is TEEP?

  • TEEP is an abbreviation for Total Equipment Effectiveness Performance.
  • TEEP measures how effectively the Total Calendar Capacity for a resource, or group of resources, is used to produce quality parts at rate.
  • TEEP is expressed as percentage and is comprised of two primary factors:  Loading and OEE
    • Total Equipment Effectiveness = Loading x OEE

What is OEE?

  • OEE is an abreviation for Overall Equipment Effectiveness.  There is a difference between Effectiveness and Efficiency – they are not the same.
  • OEE measures how effectively the Net Available Time for a resource, or group of resources, is used to produce a quality part at rate.
  • OEE is expressed as a percentage and is comprised of three factors:  Availability, Performance, and Quality.
    • Overall Equipment Effectiveness = Availability x Performance x Quality

Who Uses OEE and Why?

  • A well integrated OEE system is used by almost every department in the company.  The Who – Why follows:
    • Production Planners and Schedulers – to determine how much time should be allocated for each job in the Schedule, determine the minimum run quantity, and to effectively balance machine loading and setup activities.
    • Materials Planners / Purchasing – to assure an adequate supply of material is available to support production requirements based on customer demand and current process yields .
    • Operations Managers – to manage capacity and labour requirements.
    • Engineering – to assure processes are running as designed and intended.
    • Sales – to target sales opportunities and marketing campaigns to fill available capacity.
    • Maintenance – to monitor machine performance and manage scheduled maintenance activities and improvement actions.
    • Finance – to analyze current process performance trends in conjunction with current financial performance indicators and future forecasts.  (Labour variance, Material Variance, Overhead, Inventory, and other metrics are all affected by OEE).
    • General / Plant Manager – to monitor current performance to budgeted financial expectations, capital planning, labour and material requirements, inventory, and floor space.

What are the Six Big Losses?

  • Losses can typically be assigned to one of six categories listed below:
    1. Setup & Adjust (Availability)
    2. Breakdowns (Availability)
    3. Speed Loss or Reduced Cycle Time (Performance)
    4. Small Stops / Disruptions (Performance)
    5. Startup Parts (Quality)
    6. Defective / Rejected Parts (Quality)
  • The OEE Factor affected by the loss is indicated in the Brackets (Availability, Performance, or Quality)

Why is Setup considered as Unplanned Downtime when it is something we actually planned to do?

  • No matter how we classify setup time, it is downtime that affects availability.  This may just be a matter of terminology:  a planned event is defined by a specific start and finish time, such as rest periods, meal times, or employee meetings.  Typically this is not the case with most setups.  The time is allocated for the event but the time it actually occurs is usually a random event – an unplanned activity.  In many cases, we know the job will change over when we finish the coil or when the hopper runs out, but who can really predict when that will happen?  This does not mean that scheduling a change over or setup event to occur at a certain time of day will exclude it from the availability factor.
  • We would prefer to call this Equipment Downtime since setup is an inherent part of the production process and takes up time that would or could otherwise be used to manufacture parts.  Regardless of the general naming convention, this setup time has a great impact on Availability.  Since setup times may be product or part specific, it is important to understand the total capacity demand that is required to produce the part.

How do I measure setup time?

  • Setup time is typically measured from the time the last good part was produced to the time the first good part is produced after the setup is completed. 

What programs are available to reduce our setup time

  1. A lot of good information can be found on the internet.  Excellent articles appear in trade journals and magazines as and many books include chapters that have been written to address this area specifically.  Many tool shops and equipment suppliers are already very aware of the requirement to minimize setup and changeover times and are incorporating more advanced change over features and functions into their machines and tool designs.
  2. Significant efforts have been made over the past many years to reduce setup times through programs such as SMED (single minute exchange of dies) and other Quick Tool Change strategies.  The primary objective of any Quick Change program is to separate the setup activities into two categories – External and Internal.  External activities are activities that can be performed while the machine is still running, such as locating the next set of tools, fixtures, materials, and documentation.  Internal activities are those activities that can only be performed while the machine is down such as loading the tool or changing material.

What are some specific ways to reduce setup time?

As stated above,setup time can be classified into two categories:  External and Internal.  The objective is to minimize or reduce the internal time.  The following are a few suggestions that may help to accomplish this task:

  1. Standardize:  Prepare a standard operating procedure for setup.  Identify all tasks that must be performed, the sequence that must be followed, and assign them to specific team members.
  2. Setup Teams:  A highly trained team that understands their role in the setup process is more effective than assigning one person
  3. Tools:  There are many different tools to assist in the setup process, the following list identifies a few that may apply to your operation:
    • Rolling Bolsters:  All tool / die prestage work is performed outside of the press
    • Alignment:  Quick locator pins – Cones, Pins, V-Groove
    • Standardized Tool Location Diagrams
    • Common shut heights
    • Common pass heights
    • Clamping:  Quarter turn T bolts, Hydraulic Clamps, Magnetic Beds
    • Multi Coil De-Reeler – Prestage Material Loading
    • Programmable PLC to Set Machine Parameters
    • Automatic Tool Recognition Using Customized PLC Settings
    • Die Protection / Tool Protection – Dedictated and Hardwired to Tooling for Simple Plug and Play into PLC

What software should I use to manage our OEE data?

  • If you need something immediately or are just starting, we recommend using one of our Excel spreadsheeet templates to get you going.  They are available from our Free Downloads page or from the download box on the sidebar.
    • We recommend spending some time using an Excel spreadsheet to help you better understand how OEE and the factors are calculated.
    • This will also give you an opportunity to get a “feel” for the data and the results before being exposed to a full scale software solution.
  • We also recommend running a short term pilot project over several weeks on a few of your machines to determine what your OEE index is at the present time.  Again, you can use one of our spreadsheets (or create your own) to collect the data and analyze the results.   Understanding OEE at this level will also help to assure that your long term software solution will meet your needs – if you decide you still need a software solution at all.  Starting with a low tech solution keeps the process real and will increase your confidence and competence level before making a major capital expenditure.
    • Almost ALL efforts to integrate new technologies or methods into an operation fail because people don’t:
      • Understand what the system is supposed to do
      • Understand how it works
      • Know what to expect
      • Know how to Analyze the Results
      • Receive the Proper Training.
  • There are many excellent integrated software technologies available to collect and monitor your OEE data.  For large scale applications or those requiring corporate wide integration, a relational database software solution is recommended.
    • A solution that supports automated data collection technology is another major consideration for larger scale operations.  It is important to remember that automated technologies are typically designed to collect data for later analysis.  OEE is simple to calculate, the objective of the software is to provide a means to analyze the data and identify opportunities where the OEE can be improved.
    • Consider the type of operation you are running before spending exorbitant amounts of money.  You may already be running at optimum performance.  Unless you expect the software to tell you something different from what you already know, seriously consider why you are making the investment.
    • The objective of any solution should be one that will assist the operations team to improve performance in real time (on the production floor).
  • For smaller scale operations an Access database, an Excel Spreadsheet, or a hybrid solution using both may suit your requirements.  Calculating OEE is not a difficult task and we encourage solutions where operators on the floor can calculate the OEE for their process right on the shop floor.
  • We have used OEE systems ranging from the basic pen and paper to the full scale corporate-wide database and we have enjoyed great successes at both ends of the spectrum.  However, we have also learned that once the team is engaged and understands principles of OEE, they will inherently learn to do what is necessary to assure the process is running at peak performance levels – at all times.

Before You Purchase ANY Solution:

  •   Consider:
    • Complexity in your solution will require talented and highly skilled IT and Controls Engineers
    • A low tech solution will require more human intervention to collect and input data
    • You may not need a solution at all!  Shop floor employees can calculate their OEE and graph the results directly on the floor.
    • Who is OEE going to help the most?  If it’s not the team on the shop floor – you may fall short of your goals.If you have determined that a system is required, we recommend using a software solution that is capable of collecting data in real time and minimizes human intervention to reduce the probability of errors and reduce adminstrative costs.
  • Remember
    • Software is not a substitute for a well trained team that understands OEE, embraces the concepts, and recognizes how it can be used to improve your operation.
    • Everyone on your team should be able to calculate OEE using a simple pencil and paper.
    • If your team is struggling with the calculations – retrain before making any software decisions.
    • If you can do the math – consider getting started using a simple spreadsheet before making any major software purchases.
    • A lot can be learned from the most basic tools and simply observing the operation in action.

What about Excel or Access?

  • Whether or not you choose to use Excel or Access will depend on the scope of your OEE project.  Either may present a viable solution for the short term or even the long term for small to medium sized companies.
  • The solution you choose depends on your operation.  Is this a short term project or will it be a fully integrated function of your organization?  Only you can decide what option is the best for your organization.  Be forwarned, many companies have attempted to integrate OEE into their culture and failed due to the basic lack of training and understanding of it’s true intent.

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