Don’t compare OEE… make waste visible

So to compare OEE is not a good idea? 

Heriberto Ramirez •  Ok I got you, to compare OEE of our machines or even plants in different countries is not a good idea…

In the end what we really want is to make the waste visible and drive improvement where is needed.

Arno Koch • Ok Heriberto, this is a great starting point!
So let’s agree that comparing OEE’s is not exactly fulfilling this need.
How could you fulfill it, what could be done?

How to make waste visible by using OEE?

  1. Make sure that on the equipment you want to focus your improvement activities all (ALL) losses are visualized. Equipment that cannot be supported at this point is not yet bothered. The OEE industry Standard will guide you, in order to get as many as possible losses on the table.
  2. Take away any ‘treat’ that may be experienced by the crews who are exposing themselves and becomes vulnerable. Instead support them and encourage them in being honest.
  3. So if an OEE is low and the crew can exactly show where all the losses are: reward them! They just gave you a huge present namely an identified potential for improvement! When a team is showing of with window-dressing high numbers and barely any losses; challenge them! “Look better, find us the losses!”
  4. If you now see losses clearly, study how the improvement proceeds. Ie setup times have been improved by 50% on machine A and 5% on machine B. What was different on machine A? What can team B learn from team A. Now instead of threatening teams (this is what comparing feels like) you support an open communication. Remember; the enemy is not called plant B, it is called Competitor X.
  5. Challenge teams to halve whatever loss they found. And when they did so: offer them a stage where they can present how and what they did to get this result. The psychological effect is immense. Reward structured loss reduction activities, discourage improvements by ‘shots from the hip’ or adding space, people, money or complexity.
  6. You want to compare? Compare the amount of successfully closed improvement activities (halving a loss without investment etc.) Compare the amount of certain losses reduced, in a way they themselves thought of as ‘honest comparison’. Compare the depth of analysis between teams, the stability of OEE, and maybe the height and stability of quality rates.

Don’t compare OEE – Compare losses reduced

But whenever you compare, ask yourselves: “What will be the result on the behavior of the teams”. If it is not supporting real improvement: refrain from it.

There is much more to say about this subject but this should give you enough hints to find your way. Let us hear how your company is going to proceed on this?

Also read:

Comparing OEE’s

World Class OEE

Continuous Improvement

List with expected world class OEE’s

Evaluating performance of machines

Shopfloor Management with OEE

OEE KPI ‘s: Background

Why are there several OEE KPI’s?

“(Why) do we need different OEE KPI?” When the OEE Industry Standard team started, there were many similar discussions and argumentations heard.
A basic statement was: OEE measures the effectiveness of a machine, the equipment.

Is OEE a KPI for Operations Effectiveness?

If well defined, this of course can tell us a lot about how effective the organization uses this equipment. But also about the surrounding equipment and even the supply-chain. However, OEE is not the KPI for “operations effectiveness” or “Asset Utilization”, although it’s loss-structure is an essential part of such KPI’s.

The OEE KPI is a shopfloor tool

The reason for this decision is the principal choice that OEE is a shopfloor tool, a metric that can be influenced by the shopfloor team. Of course, now there are some ‘grey zones’. How far can the span of control of a shopfloor team stretch? And what is the definition of a ‘shopfloor team’?

One dataset serves all!

Nevertheless, using the same (OEE) data, yet stretching the time-frame more or less, can result in a different ‘scope’ that may be interesting to a different audience. Particularly to the operations- and upper management.

To clarify what we are looking at, what scope is used by what audience, we defined some different scopes that are commonly extracted from OEE data.

OEE Industry Standard: Definition – Scope

You will see several different formats of the same loss-structure data set.
I agree this is all a matter of nomenclature, but this diagram shows that we are talking about the same loss-data structure. It is just a matter of reshuffling it in different ratios, for the purpose of gaining focus to different audiences.

OEE KPI ‘s to create a unified language

Important is to create a clear ‘language’ and to use each tool for its most suitable purpose. We want to prevent the ‘abuse’ of tools for different purposes just because it is there and could be used. (You will understand I hate to see Bahco wrenches and pliers in the factory for the same reason.)
Although slightly outside the scope of the OEE Industry Standard, the different ‘scopes’ are part of the standard. However, they were never subject to serious discussions and reviews.

It seems for the new 2020 standard this would be a fine moment to do so. I would like to invite you to review the currently defined scopes and comment them:

  • Are they clearly enough defined?
  • Do they fulfill your needs?
  • Are there already other standards that could be included here?

To do so a dedicated (open) group is started to discuss the standard,
I hope together we can further improve the standard.

See also:

OEE – OOE – TEEP explained