Production tracking software and Andon boards

Production tracking software and Andon boards

Production tracking software and Andon boards

Stale data on Andon boards is as useless as stale bread, and is in fact as harmful as stale bread. Here’s how  production tracking software based on Industry 4.0 principles can get you accurate and instant data on your Andon boards.

Machine productivity numbers on Andon boards require fresh data, real-time.
Stale data on Andon boards is as useless as stale bread

The purpose of Andon boards is to display machine production and productivity information to everyone on the shop floor to:
– Provide instant production feedback on targeted and achieved production and productivity
– Highlight production problems so quick action can be taken to fix them
– Reduce downtime and rejections, ensure on-time delivery
– Improve team motivation and morale

None of these is achieved if the information on the Andon boards is not instant and accurate. This can only be achieved through the use of real-time production tracking software.

The typical method of updating the displays is through periodic manual data collection, compiling and entry in computers. The Andon board is updated after this manual entry is done. The longer the delay between updations, the more stale the data is, and the less useful in fixing problems. The longer you take to fix a production problem like a machine breakdown or high rejections, the costlier it gets. Updating every hour is useless. Some examples:
1. A machine has broken down, but the breakdown appears on the Andon board after 15 minutes. Maintenance personnel see the breakdown now, and then attend to the issue. You have lost 15 minutes of machine downtime.
2. There is a part running with a critical tight delivery schedule. Production is slow because of process issues at the machine, but the production numbers appearing on the Andon board are wrong because they have been wrongly recorded at the machine or wrongly entered in the computer. Nobody notices the problem because they don not have been fed a false optimistic picture. By the time someone notices, it is too late to take corrective action.

Updating in real-time is ideal, so people know about a problem the moment it happens. The latter however is only possible with production tracking software providing data 24/7.

If you are unhappy with your current shop floor data display method, maybe you should think of production monitoring via an Industry 4.0 based machine monitoring system that monitors machines 24/7 and updates data every few seconds on your Andon boards.

Leanworx machine monitoring software does this, for any type of machine – CNC, manual machines, transfer lines, PLC based machines – and for any type of process.

Oh, by the way, stale bread is actually not as useless as stale data. Here’s an article that says the fungus on the bread might actually be a good way to treat IBD (Inflammatory Bowel Disease).


Astrologer seeing stars ?

One Sunday morning, cycling around doing grocery shopping, I saw a long que, some commotion and a traffic jam in front of a building. I asked around, and found that the que was for getting an appointment to meet an astrologer. If you wanted to meet him, you stood in line for 2 hours, met his secretary, and got an appointment that enabled you to meet him after 6 months.


As you can see from the picture, the que (yellow line) starts at the side of the building, goes around to the front, then up 3 floors to the astrologer’s office. There’s even a policeman to control the crowd.

It turned out that the astrologer had recently appeared on a TV program and predicted something correctly, and the sudden increase in business was because of that. I’m sure the guy himself had not predicted his own good fortune.

I was thinking maybe I should have trained to be an astrologer instead of messing around with manufacturing – in this lifetime I’m definitely not going to see a que like that outside my office, waiting to buy our Industry 4.0 systems.

Free Webinar : Industry 4.0 - Unlocking machine shop profits: Are operators still holding the keys ? 15 June 2024, 2pm to 3pm, Saturday. 

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