Making the best use of the equipment and reducing costs are two of the key challenges among many that the manufacturers in general and pharmaceutical companies in particular strive to overcome. Overall Equipment Effectiveness software is a boon in addressing the said challenges and aids in enhancement of overall operational efficiency.
Pharmaceutical manufacturers encounter unique demands in their endeavour to manage improvement with operational excellence. In the past it was easier for pharmaceutical manufacturers to achieve the desired margins. But in the current scenario of competition, price pressure, stringent FDA regulations and the ongoing economic crisis, pharmaceutical manufacturers world over are under pressure with operational performance being a major concern. Pharmaceutical companies lose around US$ 15 billion every year due to disorganisation in the manufacturing lines. Efficiency, availability and performance of the packaging line affect the entire manufacturing process and, therefore, the company’s bottom line. Most of the manufacturers are striving for reduction in downtime and manufacturing cost, improved time-to-market and compliance to regulations.
Making the best use of the equipment and reducing costs are two of the key challenges among many that manufacturers in general and pharmaceutical companies in particular strive to overcome. Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) software is a boon in addressing the said challenges and aids in enhancement of overall operational efficiency.
OEE is a calculation that permits managers and operators measure process efficiency. Based on the outcome of the calculation, organisations can understand the performance efficiency, identify areas of improvement and targets and align the identified targets with the overall business strategy.
OEE considers the common sources of manufacturing productivity losses and classifies them into three groups listed below:
OEE filters production data into understandable metrics that provide a means for measuring true manufacturing efficiency. It also forms the basis for tools that facilitate enhancement in productivity. OEE score provides a complete measure of manufacturing effectiveness.
Loss in yields, stoppages due to equipment breakdown, delays in setting up the production line and maintenance activity are key factors that affect the overall production efficiency. These factors reduce the production capacity by 40 to 60 per cent.
Lack of understanding of the true performance of the manufacturing units by the Plant Managers, is the cause for encountering challenges in improving the overall operational efficiency. OEE measurement tools and techniques provide a much clearer understanding of where improvements can be made.
How to calculate OEE?
Table 2 contains shift data of formulation unit, to be used for a complete OEE calculation, starting with the calculation of the OEE Factors of Availability, Performance, and Quality.
Planned Production Time = [Shift Length - Breaks] = [480 - 60] = 420 minutes
Operating Time = [Planned Production Time - Down Time = [420 - 50] = 370 minutes
Good Tablets = [Total tablets - Rejected tablets] = [18,800 - 400] = 18,400 tablets
The accepted average OEE score in manufacturing plants ranges from 45 to 60 per cent. A world-class OEE score is greater than or equal to 85 per cent in batch manufacturing and as high as 95% in continuous processes . The accepted world-class goals for each factor are as shown in Table 4.
OEE and automation companies
Rockwell Automation’s new line
monitoring and OEE solution has helped a pharmaceutical manufacturer to capitalise on line information and improve effectiveness throughout its packaging process. Rockwell Automation was able to integrate raw data into a single information interface presenting OEE calculations by output, throughput and by each machine across process and product.
GE Fanuc’s Plant Applications Efficiency solution is a powerful software module that lets plant managers make sense of the plant data and evaluate efficiency in real time. Part of the larger Proficy Plant Applications Collaborative Production Management suite, Efficiency is designed to calculate OEE quickly and easily. Efficiency helps to track downtime, waste, production counts, and user-defined events specific to the process. Efficiency, aids in generation of extensive reports easily and enables production managers to perform additional long-term analysis on the trends that matter.
OEE for enhancement of operational excellence OEE data –
OEE is a metric that can be embraced at every level of the organisation. It is meaningful to the operator on the shop floor, yet translates all the way up to the board room. If companies can produce more with less equipment / machinery, it means growth and increased revenue with less capital investment. Higher efficiency drives down the cost. By reducing capital needs and increasing profit, a business will improve its Return on Total Capital, the primary metric of the company / CEO performance.
Acknowledgement: The author acknowledges with gratitude the support extended by OEEsystems, GE Fanuc and Rockwell Automation in providing facts & figures for the article. The author also acknowledges with thanks the details from the websites of Systech International, Vorne Industries, Gemba Solutions / OEE Impact and Idhammar Systems Ltd.
OEE – Systems and Software
The following companies are some of the leading suppliers of OEE systems for calculating, tracking and reporting of OEE.
OEEsystems – Having its international headquarters at Ireland, OEE Systems works with manufacturing companies to improve competitiveness, increase capacity, reduce costs and deliver business performance excellence. In partnership with global manufacturing customers OEE Systems has refined PerformOEE™ to meet their specific business requirements.
PerformOEE™ - Bulk Manufacturing – Although OEE has traditionally been applied only to discrete manufacturing processes, PerformOEE™ uses an adaptation of the traditional OEE model to fully accommodate the requirements of bulk-manufacturing and process-based manufacturing businesses and provide the process industry with a practical Manufacturing Intelligence and Performance Management software solution based on the OEE model.
Vorne Industries – Having its corporate office at Il, USA, Vorne Industries develops tools that enable customers to improve their manufacturing productivity: quickly, efficiently and effectively. Vorne strives for excellence in all aspects of the company—people, products, and service. Vorne’s XL800 Production Monitor is a product for performance management, productivity improvement and lean manufacturing. XL800 is a “six-in-one” product that combines a large-area visual display, a high-performance production monitor, expandable I/O, a multiple channel communication hub, a program executioner and a data warehouse—all in one package.
Gemba Solutions / OEE Impact – Specialists in delivering tangible results quickly. They help manufacturing units to slash production costs, increase capacity eliminate waste, save energy and optimise labour.
Idhammar Systems Ltd. – Idhammar is a leading provider of total productive maintenance and manufacturing software. Idhammar has its Headquarters in the UK and has expert teams of OEE and maintenance specialists, software developers, customer support, and help desk staff who work together to develop, support and promote systems that are improving industrial operations worldwide.
Understanding OEE by OEEsystems
Calculating – OEE - work sheet by Vorne Industries
Gemba solutions Ltd. / OEE Impact
The fast guide to OEE by Vorne Industries