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Operator Efficiency? What Do You Mean?

Determining operator efficiency can be confusing to say the least

· Shop Floor,Manufacturing,Labor Compliance,Efficiency,Payroll

96% Efficient? No way!

After speaking to several engineers, they told me that their plant runs 96% efficient on a batch shop floor system. I’m thinking that there is no way possible that a plant can run 96% using a batch shop floor system. Then, it dawned on me that they may have been talking about on-standard efficiency, not real-efficiency.

I have illustrated 4 types of operator efficiency calculations below.

  • On-Standard Efficiency
  • Off-Standard Efficiency
  • Combined Efficiency
  • Real Efficiency

How do you determine your efficiency?

On-Standard efficiency – This scenario is when you’re measuring the operator’s efficiency. They are sewing at their normal workstation performing the operation for which they have been trained. In a Real-Time shop floor, the operator scans the bundle ticket and starts sewing and continues throughout the day, scanning one bundle ticket after the other, no hiccups, no issues.

How do you calculate On-Standard Efficiency?

Efficiency = # of SAMs completed while on-standard/time it took to complete

For example: It takes 2 minutes to complete the operation. The operator completes 170 units x 2 minutes. The total SAMs would be 340.

Let’s say that the operator had 6 hours of on-standard work (6 hours = 360 minutes)

The equation would be 340/360 x 100 = 94.4% of “On-Standard” efficiency

What is a SAM?

A SAM is Standard Allowed Minutes. The number of minutes spent performing your operation(s)

Off-Standard efficiency – Off standard is when the operator is performing operations that aren’t standard. In other words, they have been asked to do operations that they haven’t been trained for, they’re on a “training curve”, or performing someone else’s work.

In a real-time shop floor environment, getting your supervisor approval is completed using a wireless tablet alerting your mechanic and/or supervisor that you are having an issue that needs to be addressed.

Additionally, the pay is automatically calculated with an off-standard rate.

In our example let’s assume the operators’ machine had mechanical problems and ran slow.

How do you calculate Off-Standard Efficiency?

Efficiency = # of SAMs completed while off-standard/time it took to complete

The operator still has 2 minutes to do the same operation but produces fewer because the machine wasn’t working properly. In 1.75 hours, they completed 80 SAMs (105 minutes).

The equation would be 80/105 x 100 = 76.1% “Off-Standard” efficiency

Combined efficiency - On-Standard and Off-Standard Efficiency combined – Combined is exactly what it says, On and Off Standard efficiency.

In a real-time shop floor control environment, the combined efficiency and rate are automatically calculated and reported.

In our example the employee had 6 hours of on-standard work, 1.75 hours off-standard because their machine ran slow.

Either way, their efficiency must be calculated using a combined on-standard/off-standard equation.

How do you calculate Combined On-standard, Off-Standard Efficiency? It is calculated the same way as the above example except you combine the SAMs completed and minutes it took to complete.

Efficiency = Combined SAMs/time it took to complete

The equation would be 420/465 x 100 = 90.3% Combined on-standard, off-standard efficiency

Real Efficiency – The real efficiency of the operator is when you consider the entire day. All 480 minutes of the day if it is an eight-hour shift.

How do you calculate Real Efficiency?

Efficiency = SAMs completed/Total minutes for the day

Going back to our example this operator produced 420 SAMs in an 8-hour shift (480 minutes). Is this an example of a typical day for your shop floor?

The equation would be 420/480 x 100 = 87.5% “Real efficiency”.

Throughout this blog, I’ve illustrated how efficiencies are calculated, but I have also intertwined the advantages of using a real-time shop floor solution. You can calculate all the same data using a batch system, but it will take more time and is less efficient when comparing to a real-time, wireless tablet, data collection system with push notifications.

How do you determine your efficiencies? Is it efficient? Is it digital?

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