Let’s Escape the Illusion of Control

July 9, 2012

Are many manufacturers kidding themselves? Do they believe those magic numbers that pop up in their dashboards give them the real process performance story? Doesn’t that single value tell the complete tale?

Manufacturers create Key Performance Indicators (KPI) to better understand what is happening in their process. One of the most common, Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE),  combines measures of availability, throughput and quality to provide a more comprehensive understanding of equipment or production line performance. However, a single OEE value provides very limited manufacturing decision support. Companies often short change themselves by using OEE as an isolated value and not looking at the statistics and trends.

That is where process based analytics come to the rescue. By using SPC and treating OEE like any other process parameter, manufacturers extract far more value from the monitoring process. With statistically-based trend analysis they can quickly identify the areas that fall short in quality, throughput or availability. 

By coupling OEE with SPC, process understanding becomes part of the manufacturing culture. Since this is a component of the Manufacturing Intelligence model, it sets companies on the path to state-of-the-art manufacturing process management and enables them to:

  • Apply SPC to automated OEE solutions – looking at a single KPI value adds little to process management capability, but using control charts and process capability analysis will enable the company to deliver world-class manufacturing;
  • Rapidly determine where improvement opportunities exist;
  • Focus oninformation, not data – data is the raw material; information provides the decision support that improves performance levels.

Check out details in the ROI Case Study – Combine OEE and SPC for Real Decision Support.  Try this manufacturing intelligence-based strategy and turn KPIs into real-time decision support. 


“Manually checking SPC charts is a thing of the past with NWA Software.”

Frazer Nicholson, Systems Technician, Rio Tinto Alcan

Subscribe to NWA