Resolving downtime events and alarms faster leads to improved machine uptime and improved operator experience. Whether the downtime is caused by an alarm or other downtime reason, solving this use case can have incredible effects on the bottom line of the organization.
What is a use case?
A use case is a business problem that, when solved, has positive impacts on the overall organizational health that are measurable. Each use case addresses a common priority of manufacturers and have outcomes that can be verified.
Topics within this article:
- Expected Outcomes
- Solutions- Basic Level
- Solutions- Advanced Level
- Measuring Results
When focusing on this use case, a MachineMetrics user can expect some measurable results that will impact the bottom line. Below we outline some of the expected outcomes that you will verify with your CSM over time:
- Less downtime; reduction in unplanned downtime
- A decrease in response time to downtime events
- More repeatable and predictable staffing planning
- Operators will be able to handle more machines
- Reduction in overtime requirements; reduction in the number of shifts
Before you can start getting results, the following must be done:
- Machines Connected to MachineMetrics
Not connected? Check out this training module on Adding Machines
- Monitors installed on the factory floor for real-time visibility
Visit our Hardware Shopping list for suggestions on factory floor overhead monitors
- List of your alarm codes
- Downtime Categories configured
- Tablets installed at the machines
To learn more about tablet implementation, visit this article.
Who needs to be involved?
To achieve faster downtime and alarm resolution, the following roles within your organization should be engaged in the process:
Operators need to be engaged and trained on the Operator Dashboard at the machines. They will be the ones inputting the downtime categories that will be used to trigger workflows for faster resolution.
- Maintenance Department
As the recipients of notifications, the maintenance department will need to also be engaged in the process to make sure they recognize and can act upon the notifications.
- Shop Floor Managers
As the arm of the management team that is closest to the floor, these individuals will likely be driving this strategy and managing the efforts across teams.
Product Features Used
- Operator Dashboard
- Report Builder
- Utilization Report
Basic Level Solutions- Faster Downtime & Alarm Resolution
The first step to resolving downtime and alarms faster is simply knowing that the downtime event has occurred. Using the large monitors on the factory floor, you and your team can see when a machine goes down through the MachineMetrics dashboard.
Large monitors installed on the factory floor provide the first step in resolving downtime faster by providing Real-Time Visibility
Even before tablets are installed at machines allowing Operators to categorize and add contextual data at the machine, this real-time visibility of downtime can lead to corrective actions and bring awareness to potential unknown issues that are occurring.
You are a shop floor manager. You do your job well and walk the floor regularly, but you can't be everywhere at once. Plus, you don't want to be breathing down Operators' necks constantly.
MachineMetrics dashboards allow you to keep an eye on uptime and downtime from wherever you are, so that you can provide assistance when necessary and ask good questions based on actual data.
We have found that these large monitors displaying dashboards can improve the culture and productivity of Operators and also management.
To take this use case to the next level, Advanced Solutions include categorizing the downtime and taking action to improve resolution time using other MachineMetrics features.
Advanced Level Solutions - Faster Downtime & Alarm Resolution
Once your machines are connected and you have tablets installed at the machines, you are ready to move on to the advanced level solutions. If you haven't already, you will want to configure your hierarchy of downtime categories in MachineMetrics.
Understanding and Using Downtime Categories and Alarms
By using alarms and categorization of downtime, your team and machines create data that our system can then trigger notifications and workflows off of. We will look at Workflows in the next section, but first let's get an overview of Downtime Categories and Alarms.
These categories are what the Operators and other team members will use to track what is happening at the machines. By selecting the category of downtime at the machine, the Operators add important contextual data to the data coming off of the machine. These downtime categories are also used to trigger workflows and notifications as well as in reporting, so putting the time in to create a well-thought hierarchy of downtime categories is an important first step in solving this use case.
Consider Using a Hierarchy of Downtime Categories
By creating a hierarchy of downtime categories, you can get more specific with the information received by the maintenance team in a notification.
For example, you can set up a main downtime category as Tooling with subcategories as Tool Change, Tool Inspection, Lack of Tooling, etc.
When configuring Workflows, which we will look at in-depth in the next section, you can choose to send notifications to different people in the organization which will contain the main and subcategory of the downtime event. This enables the right person to come to the machine prepared to deal with the reason for downtime.
Alarms are native codes that come directly off of the control of some machines. These codes represent specific issues or conditions on the machine, like a coolant pump alarm or an alarm signaling that the splash guard is open.
There are times when the alarms can be resolved at the machine by the Operator, but other times, alarms can cause unnecessary long periods of downtime that have a negative impact on the efficiency of production.
The faster alarms can be resolved, the faster the machine is back up and running, and the more efficient your operations run. This is what this use case is all about.
Using Downtime Events and Alarms to Create Automation
MachineMetrics Workflows can be used to trigger automation based on these downtime categorizations and alarm triggers. This will keep your operations from stalling out over a need for material, for example. This is a perfect example of how you can use MachineMetrics to get faster downtime and alarm resolution, but first watch a quick video to understand what a Workflow is.
Step 1: Set up the downtime category "Need Material" or something similar in your system settings
Step 2: Configure a Workflow that will create an incident or send a notification to the person on your team that can provide more material at the machine.
Step 3: Next time the Operator runs out of material, they can categorize the downtime as "Need Material," and that person will immediately receive notice that there is a need for more material at the exact machine.
Key Point: While the material is making it's way to the machine, that Operator can continue to run additional machines, increase productivity, increases the number of machines they can handle, decreasing over time, and solving for a wide variety of other business problems from one notification.
Imagine the alternative: Your Operator runs out of material. The Operator then wanders across the factory to where additional material is housed. Instead of remaining productive at machines, time and capacity are wasted.
Learn more about Workflows in this article
Now, let's take a look at how you can use data to confirm some of the below improvements at your organization:
- Less downtime/Reduced unplanned downtime
- Response time decreased
- Repeatable, predictable staffing plan
- One operator can handle more machines
- Reduced overtime requirements
Reach out to your CSM or our support team at Support@machinemetrics.com.