by July 3, 2012 0 comments

The BI and DSS project displays real-time production, defects, and productivity data on the shopfloor and as a result, has enhanced productivity of the company’s Dharuhera engine plant by around 6% and reduced the number of component defects by a similar margin

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Across the three assembly lines in the Dharuhera facility, the manufacturing defects capturing process used to collate defects at the end of each day, and corrective action was possible only in the next shift or the next day. To increase efficiency of the manufacturing process and to reduce defects, transmitting such information to the assembly lines in real time became a necessity.

The implementation

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The project consisted of two modules. The first module aimed at making available real-time information at the assembly lines through large display screens which enables the production supervisors to take corrective actions almost instantly. In addition to defect related information, a lot of other information like actual vs. planned production, passed vehicles vs. rework, safety clips, etc is also being displayed. These different sets of information enable the right people to take appropriate actions in negligible time as compared to the previous scenario when the supervisors had to check for this data from their systems, at the end of a shift. The display screens are directly connected to the SAP ERP application. At any given time, any kind of loss which happens on the manufacturing lines is automatically recorded in the system and displayed.

The second module of the project targeted improving the efficiency of the equipment. Here they integrated the PLC (Programmable Logical Controller) of the critical equipment used on manufacturing lines and used display systems to showcase the overall equipment efficiency (OEE) of the equipment in real time (OEE is a product of the quality rate, performance rate and availability rate of the equipment). They put up display systems at prominent places on the shop floor to display the Overall Line Efficiency (OLE) of the assembly lines. They have deployed a mechanism wherein the assembly workers are enabled to raise an alarm right away whenever anything seems to hamper the production activities, be it material unavailability, equipment failure or any other reason.

Challenges faced

The primary challenge which was faced in the implementation of this project was the change management that was required to ensure that the people on the shop floor used the system and put in efforts towards increasing the efficiency of the organization. The challenge was overcome with the involvement of the top management as the intent of using this system for the good of the organization was flowing down from the top.

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The result

The project has increased the quality and productivity at all points in the production process. There is increased transparency and improved output, reduced rate of rejection, reduced rework, improved decision making at the shop floor, and greater involvement of the workforce.

In quantitative terms, the project has enhanced productivity of engine plant by around 6% and reduced the number of defects by around 5-6%.

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