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5 MES Software Warning Signs You Should Be Keeping at Bay

Eric Fogg
June 09, 2016

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On-time delivery and customer satisfaction are two of the toughest elements of managing a modern manufacturing company.

 


And in today’s competitive environment, where a healthy bottom-line is tied directly to efficiency, your MES software could be leaving you exposed if it’s not alerting you to potential warning signs in advance that your job is in jeopardy.

Here’s a warning signs checklist you can use to make sure that your MES software is helping you stay ahead of the game. If your shop floor software is working for you, then you shouldn’t be experiencing any of these problems:


 

1.) You find yourself scrambling for parts

 

Not having the proper part count at the end of a job is a sure sign your MES software isn’t doing its job. Without an automated, accurate way to check parts VS goal, you’re courting trouble. Your manufacturing software should tell you if you are on track to meeting your parts goal at any stage of the job in progress.

 

2.) You discover broken machines by chance

 

Machines break down. The question is, how long does it take before someone on your shop floor discovers it? If the answer isn’t ‘within seconds,’ it’s a concern. Every second a broken machine goes undetected can cost you money and put on-time delivery at risk. Downtime and quality issues put you on a collision course to decreased customer satisfaction. Relying on manual tracking is both inefficient and unreliable. To ensure on-time delivery, you need an MES software that provides instant, automated notification of any equipment failure.

 

3.) You’re guessing at why a job was delayed

 

It’s one thing to deal with the common, daily issues you encounter on the shop floor - the usual ‘brush fires’ that spring up. But like an iceberg, it’s the undetected chronic problems that lurk below the surface that truly put your efforts at risk. These recurring productivity thieves represent problems that are more difficult and challenging to identify, but they must be rooted out if significant production improvement is to be made. Your MES manufacturing software should help you deal with immediate issues, but it also needs to help you to diagnose chronic problems impacting your shop floor through drill-down reporting, and pareto charts detailing your most common downtime and quality issues.

 

4.) You aren’t sure what’s causing unplanned downtime

 

Unplanned downtime: the two words that trigger panic and fear in anyone charged with maintaining an on-time production schedule. And when you can’t pin down the reasons for it, it will continue to be a problem. Unplanned downtime quietly eats away at profitability and customer relationships. If your current MES software doesn’t allow you to identify the main causes your delivery schedules will always be at risk to unnecessary delays.

 

5.) Your setup times are based on approximations

 

How long does it take to set up a machine to run the next job? Can you answer that accurately or does your response typically begin with..”well, it takes about an hour,” or “depending on the shift, between one and two hours.” You’d think that setup time - especially with common and recurring jobs that are being run constantly - that setup time would be more predictable. Your MES software should allow you to enter an anticipated setup time and visually communicate that to your operators if they are at risk of going over the allotted setup window.

 


 

Running an efficient, modern manufacturing operation in today’s demanding environment requires an manufacturing MES software  that gives you a continuous, transparent window into parts production in real time.

Click the button below to learn more about how MachineMetrics manufacturing MES software can equip you with real-time shop floor tools you need to stay competitive.

 

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