Autins improved OEE by 27% in three months

User Story: Autins Turns Their Challenge Into Success by Quickly Adopting an IoT Solution
January 27, 2021
Role / Team function

About Autins

Autins is a leading industrial designer, manufacturer, and supplier of acoustic and thermal insulation solutions for the automotive industry and other sectors. The company has a strong global presence, having manufacturing sites in Germany, Sweden, and the UK as well as having technical partners in Asia and America.

Challenges and decision making

Miguel, Autins’ Operation Manager in Germany, with progressive experience in LEAN operations, has been managing optimization tasks in the factory. The factory needs to meet the demand of the customers with the constant pressure on quality and price. Simultaneously, the production processes need digitization in the scope of Industry 4.0.

In March 2020, Covid-19’s effect was seen worldwide, including Autins’ production. This company saw a sudden decrease in demand during the first two weeks, and the company needed to take action to survive. Urgent measures were needed due to the high rate of labor costs. Miguel did not have a clear picture of the current production efficiency at the time, as there was no reliable information about the machine’s performance. Miguel looked for a plug-and-play solution and found the Factbird system.

He immediately contacted the Factbird team and started this solution on two high-runner production machines.

At the start of the project, Miguel listed the following objectives:

  1. to obtain a clear picture and understanding of the efficiency of the current production
  2. to increase the two high runner machines’ productivity by 10%+ and 20%+
  3. to gain real time visual management to see how a shift is performing
  4. to know why the machines had stopped during shifts

Miguel received the package from Factbird and he installed the system right away without any trouble. It was very convenient because the Covid-19 situation did not allow any physical interaction from any supplier at the time. As soon as the Factbird's IIoT Edge Gateways were installed on the two machines, he could see live information coming from the machines.

Previously, every time we finished the work orders from operations, we noticed the trend was stable, having many peaks. Some shifts had higher output than others. We could not figure out the real medium of the production. With Factbird, we started to get a clear picture of the production - What is the exact output, and why are the machines stopping - It was an eye-opener.
Miguel, Operation Manager at Autins

Performance Impact

After a while, Miguel also noticed a change in the shop floor culture. Miguel told the operators that it was important to know why the machines had stopped and that the goal was not to produce more but to have a stable production. Being able to see how the shifts are performing on the Factbird dashboard motivated the operators. They began to work as a team to achieve better results. As Factbird visualizes the shift’s progress, the operators began communicating more and cooperating to provide a better result. Furthermore, the operators began proactively making parallel improvements such as material changeover, which they had never done before.

We now have a common attitude in our shopfloor – Let the machines run as stable as possible. If there is any issue, we just want to know why.
Miguel, Operation Manager at Autins

Before Covid-19, the production ran in three shifts to meet the market demand. Today, the machines are more stable, and the output has improved (Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) has gone from 54% to 81%!).

Now, it is running with only two shifts even after the demand returned to normal. The night shift is no longer needed, providing a significant benefit for the company. The improvement journey continues on the shop floor as Miguel now has the right tool to support the success of the factory.

The company can use an array of built-in analytics and OEE monitoring solutions with the Factbird Cloud Application. Thus, they can plan further improvements and check whether there is a beneficial effect. Other departments in the company are seeing the benefits from the reliable data, e.g., reliable data of manufacturing costs for the sales department.

When we started to use the Factbird solutions, we in July had an OEE of 54 %. In October we had improved the OEE to 81%. We report exactly how the production is running every month, which gives us more confidence to make decisions. On top of that, the operators enjoy the fact that they can see how their shifts are performing on the Factbird application, which also gives more confidence to all the operators and to the whole shop floor. If anything happens on the machines, we know why. We know where to improve.
Miguel, Operation Manager at Autins

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