When producing anything in a factory or similar setting, it is essential that the processing systems in place are of the utmost efficiency.
Failing to do so will result in an inferior product and could considerably – and unnecessarily – increase overheads which ultimately could affect the viability of the product or even the manufacturer.
But it’s not just a case of installing the latest processing equipment and having documentation that states everything is in order. These are important of course but the system must be continually monitored to ensure peak performance is maintained at all times.
It is essential therefore to identify a series of Key Performance Indicators but as the name would suggest, they are ‘key’ so there is no point having lists upon lists that could cover the whole factory wall.
Instead, here are five of the most important KPIs to measure and monitor.
- Overall Equipment Efficiency
Comparing what was actually produced against the amount that would have been produced had everything run perfectly will provide an indication of your system’s Overall Equipment Efficiency (OEE).
OEE considers losses through Availability, such as machine breakdown, downtime between shifts; Quality, for example products that go to waste because they aren’t of the sufficient standard and, Performance Rate, how fast is the product being made against the best possible time.
- Product Safety
Safety standards simply cannot be ignored, particularly during the production of food and drinks or pharmaceuticals.
Exactly how this is monitored will depend on the type of product but could include keeping track of temperatures and product shelf life.
Yield is measured by considering how much raw material or packaging should have gone into the manufacturing of the product against how much actually did.
It’s important because when too many raw ingredients are being used, either through mismanagement of the processing system or through badly designed or installed equipment, it can be an expensive error given the materials have already been paid for but ended up going to waste.
- Right First Time
There’s no point getting all systems in place to find that it takes more than one run to produce the anticipated quality of product.
By monitoring what went wrong, and at which point of the process, systems can be amended to ensure the costly mistakes are not made repeatedly.
The best test of your system efficiencies, however, is the satisfaction of your customers. Therefore, keeping an accurate and categorised record of all complaints received will enable you to determine how these may be addressed during the manufacturing process.
At Value Stream Machinery (VSM), we can provide off-the-shelf and bespoke machinery and our experienced teams would welcome the opportunity to discuss the options available and how these can help your business play its role in reducing food waste.
To discuss further, please call us on +44 28 90 730153.