Monthly Archives: January 2013

Reach The Pinnacle In Manufacturing With Manufacturing Excellence

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What makes an Operation Excellent? What are the means to achieve excellence, why is it so important? Is an excellent process highly profitable as well? These questions are relevant to all manufacturers irrespective of industry, type of production and the resultant end product. Taking it from the top, any operation that is excellent will have certain attributes that set it apart from the rest. An operation can become excellent only when it has a dedicated team of workers and has a process that is under control. What sets certain operations apart is the way in which they deal with issues, … Continue reading

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Excursion Prevention Is Possible With Process Integration

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How much money do you think you loose due to excursions that occur on a daily basis on your production floor on a daily basis? Excursions that occur due to lack of planning, preventive maintenance and lack of process insight can become a major cost center. Also due to the highly random nature of excursions it becomes very hard to detect them and prevent them from happening. During a process simple or complicated, there are thousands of things that can go wrong, the more complex the procedure the more excursions that can occur. So, is there any way to detect … Continue reading

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Become A Global Leader In Manufacturing, Apply MES Right Away!

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What separates an Industry leader from the followers? Why are the leaders able to adapt faster to changes and achieve higher market shares? What makes Organizations like Intel, Sony, Bose and Toyota, the Best-In-Class or leaders in their respective industries? The answers to these questions are similar to some extent. Every Organization that has been able to understand their customers and successfully convert their needs, into products and services has been able to become the leader in their industry. An extraordinary Organization does not aim at doing different things, but rather at doing things differently, by understanding their capabilities and … Continue reading

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Yes, You Can Have Better Process Control, Employ SPC System Today!

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Why do we need process control? To what extent should the data be analyzed? Will my operation really gain anything from an automated SPC application? These questions arise in an operations manager’s mind whenever the topic of an automated SPC system comes up for discussion. Let us try and answer these questions and help our operation manager in distress. The first question seems a little irrelevant to me, because I am ardent believer in the saying, ‘what can be measured can be Managed.’ Without an SPC system it would be very difficult to separate assignable causes and non assignable causes … Continue reading

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FIS A Necessity For Better Production And Decision Making

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FIS stands for Factory Information System; it is an application which is considered crucial by automation experts. There are many versions and variants in which an FIS can be applied in a factory but we will look into that part a bit later in the article. Right now let’s focus on what an FIS really is and what makes it so necessary for modern factories. To begin with let us focus on the value of information, and the need to have real time info about the factory floor. Every manager irrespective of position or function will agree with me when … Continue reading

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Information Systems, The Future Of Manufacturing

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Ever since the beginning of human civilization, what sets us apart from other animals in the world is our ability to communicate, express thoughts and process information. Human beings have come a long way from gathering food, scavenging and hunting to building super cities and living in well established industrial societies. Do you ever think how has that been possible, it cant be just intelligence right? When I think about the growth of human beings on the whole, it strikes me that the main reason for our amazing growth is our ability to innovate and the pursuit of being better. … Continue reading

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Is an MES application successful in discreet manufacturing?

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Discreet Manufacturing is considered different from process manufacturing because the end product being produced is different every time, unlike process manufacturing. Practices like customization and delayed differentiation have allowed discreet manufacturers achieve the economies of scale and scope. Process manufacturing concentrates on refining the process and achieving the same end result every time with lesser cost and higher quality. In discreet manufacturing however, the process of production needs to be flexible and adapt itself to the desired end result. In discreet manufacturing the ability of the process to change as the product specifications change is a prerogative, also the high … Continue reading

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Safety Management Solutions, For Those Who Put Safety First

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Is Safety the first priority in your Organization? Is worker safety and a hazard free working environment really what you strive for? It is seen that many organizations have fancy policies and documents portraying the concern they have for the safety of their workforce, but the reality is very different. Safety is the most basic and primary need for any individual and the duty of the management of any organization to fulfill this need is implied. As per Maslow’s theory about ‘Hierarchy of needs’, Safety, at the workplace is the most first and foremost need of any worker. So when … Continue reading

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Can Information solutions make my factory more efficient?

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I have always had a strong belief that companies that aspire to be more efficient also achieve higher profitability. It is only through doing things better, faster and cheaper that profitability of an operation increases, assuming that the demand is constant. Even if the demand for your end product is variable which is always the case, an efficient process can better adapt to varying demand and use the valuable resources available for other areas of attention. Technology plays a key role in the pursuit of higher efficiency; it is through the application of technological marvels that a quantum leap can … Continue reading

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Manufacturing Excellence solutions, do they really work?

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What is a Manufacturing Excellence Application? Does it really work? Does my factory need such an application? I encounter these questions frequently. So, what is a Manufacturing Excellence solution? A manufacturing excellence solution, as the name clearly suggests is an IT application that helps you achieve excellence in manufacturing. No don’t worry; I do not intend to go around in circles. What I mean is that a manufacturing excellence application allows you to monitor, control and improve the performance of all the vital parameters and issues you consider critical for your Organization and your plant’s operation. Let us say that … Continue reading

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Quality Management systems, are they really necessary?

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The importance of Quality can never be under estimated. Quality is the most important competitive priority for every Organization, achieving better quality than competitors, is imperative to stay in the race to become the Best-In-Class today. Cost and Quality were considered to be at two different ends of the same continuum i.e. to improve quality meant increasing cost, but over time this view has changed drastically. Improved Quality, achieved through continuous improvement of process has been able to reduce the total Cost function in the long run. Doing things right the first time, managing operations by facts and applying statistical … Continue reading

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IT is not my core competence, should I outsource?

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IT has become the biggest concern for Organizations today due to the volatile nature of markets and need to know tomorrow’s events, today and in some cases yesterday. Better communication and higher operational flexibility have become extremely desirable factors. The global IT revolution has made the life of managers simpler by providing real time data management and aiding real time decision making. Companies that specialize in providing IT solutions and services are proliferating at a very high pace. IT has become one of the fastest growing industries and is attracting highly skilled talent from around the globe. All successful organizations … Continue reading

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“Yes You Can Increase Your Throughput, Get an MES App Today! “

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Throughput, Operational Expense and Inventory are three major concerns for any manufacturing Organization irrespective of their end product, process and environmental factors. An organization can attain the goal of Profit Maximization only when they are able to minimize the Operational Expense and Inventory costs and at the same time increase Throughput. Throughput can be described as the rate at which a system or a process attains its goal, in business the goal being profit maximization, through higher sales and lower inventory. A high throughput indicates that the sale of the produce is high and the inventory is low, which basically … Continue reading

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“My Factory Needs Better Process Control, What Do I Do? “

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Process control, is a derivative of the school of thought that believes that management should be treated as more of a Science and should be based on hardcore evidence and facts, rather than managerial whims. I am an ardent believer of the same truly believe that what can be measured can definitely be managed when it comes to a process that has certain parameters and metrics. However, I do believe that when is comes to leading a team or converting a sales call a certain degree of personal charisma is required and that is a bit of an art, but … Continue reading

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“Become The Best-In-Class Factory Today, Apply MES application Today “

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Every Top Boss of every Organization of the world strives to make his/her organization the best in its class. If you read the Vision or Mission statement of any organization in the world this desire to be the best and even better, will become very evident. Irrespective of the line of business every company strives to be labeled the best in business, today we will talk about achieving this dream and making it a reality for manufacturing organizations, for whom their factories/plants are the main source of revenue. To become the Best-In-Class operation, you need to realize that there is … Continue reading

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“Is an MES application the right application for my factory? “

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I truly believe that, necessity is the mother of all invention, it is this very need of human beings to be better, faster, safer and most profitable, that has transformed the way industries function today. Factories have become the breeding grounds for newer, more capable technologies. The rate of automation and industrialization in all segments of the manufacturing industry is at an all time high. Organizations have realized the value of Information Technology and the role it can play in process integration and profit maximization. There has been an explosion of IT applications that are being developed and employed by … Continue reading

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I need a robust Data management System, where do I look?

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Technology and efficient management of data are the major drivers of operational excellence in the current industrial scenario. It is through harnessing and better using technology that companies have been able to achieve Economies of Scale/Scope and develop more flexible, quality oriented production lines. Today the perception of technology has had a paradigm shift from process improvement to process integration and continuous improvement. Data Management has become a critical issue in the strategic planning of Organizations, Information processing and knowledge management are now the prime concerns. Effective Data-Management forms the back bone of the Technological Development efforts in any modern … Continue reading

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The Importance of a Robust Data Management Architecture

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Data is defined as the lowest level of abstraction, it’s difficult to draw any inference from raw data on its own. Data when presented in a meaningful form is considered Information, this information when further processed and reported formally, becomes Knowledge. Gathering and maintaining this Information is a major challenge for every organization doing any business in any part of the world. Today’s release is aimed at understanding the problems related to Data and Data Management. So Let’s first consider the importance of Data, its management and why is it so important to have robust data architecture? Each Organization in … Continue reading

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I need to improve the Knowledge Mgt of my facility, should I Outsource?

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Information is considered the biggest asset of an Organization, all management theories stress on improving Information processing and knowledge management to be more successful. Information which becomes a part of our cognition over a period of time through experience and education becomes Knowledge. In our daily work routine we come across a lot of Data, but this data needs to be presented in a meaningful form to become information and make sense, then analyzing this information will result in learning and eventually in knowledge. Knowledge management and retention has become the prime concern for process specific Organizations, especially those which … Continue reading

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Do You Have Best In Class Performance in Your Manufacturing Operations?

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Is your factory operation the best-in-class in your industry? Is it operating at optimum efficiency/effectiveness? Are the operational efforts well-coordinated, well communicated and well documented? Do you have the ability to monitor each and every activity in real-time and make profitable decisions? Today these are the questions that are critical for an Organization that believes in achieving the highest possible Quality at the lowest possible cost. Manufacturing organizations today are constantly under pressure to develop newer, better products much faster than ever before. This means that the factory operation needs to be achieving optimum efficiency just to be able to … Continue reading

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“Technology & Operations Management experience, two key pillars in MES design “

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Technology has drastically transformed the way manufacturing industry functions today; it has become the major differentiating factor and is helping the top companies maintain their competitive supremacy in the market. Technology has become a potent weapon for the Best-In-Class organizations and has helped them achieve monopolistic positions in their respective markets. Since the advent of mass customization and delayed differentiation, technology has been used very differently by different companies of the same industry. This means every process has become unique in a bid to achieve differentiation and technology is the main driver behind this subtle differentiation. Thus whenever an organization … Continue reading

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Why SPC is important, is my MES application OK without it?

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All modern management theories and systems such as TQM, Six Sigma, Lean and JIT, lay a lot of stress on management by facts. Many management theorists have stated and concurred the belief that what can be measured can be managed. The school of thought that advocates the use of facts and figures in management makes a very strong case, this is because it gives a factual and analysis based perspective to management and does away with managerial whims and fancies. But to be able to manage any process by facts and figures, it is imperative to have these facts and … Continue reading

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