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KPIs: Supporting the Business and Continuous Improvement

6 November 9:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.

Session Type: Paper

Track: The Connected Enterprise

Paths(s): TechnicianTechnician   ManagementManagement   ExecutiveExecutive   EngineerEngineer   

In this paper session, industry experts will present a variety of new ideas on the implementation and use of Key Performance Indicators to support both the business and continuous improvement. Important metrics such as Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) will be discussed as well as using a variety of technologies to actively manage KPI's.


Approaching OEE Implementations as Agents of Continuous Improvement

Richard Gellner, Maverick Technologies Read Bio

A senior consultant in Manufacturing IT, with extensive experience in discrete manufacturing, continuous process control, plant visualization, manufacturing intelligence, and process improvement spanning many industry segments. Focused on performance improvement through integrated information including: 

  • Current State Definition
  • Future State Vision Development 
  • User Requirements Specification 
  • Functional Requirements Specification 
  • Platform Evaluation
  • Implementation Planning
  • System Implementation


When companies decide to implement an OEE program  there is often a collective groan from the operations group, who realize that they will soon become the owners of, and bear the responsibility for another production metric. This reaction is the result of having production metrics imposed upon them with arbitrary targets for which they are held accountable, but that provide no means or methodology for driving the process improvements needed for success. In his book “Understanding Variation – They Key to Managing Chaos” Donald J. Wheeler quotes Dr. Brian Joiner on this topic, “When people are pressured to meet a target value there are three ways they can precede, 1. They can work to improve the system. 2. They can distort the system. 3. They can distort the data.”

If, in an OEE implementation, continuous improvement is not the emphasis, and the necessary knowledge and analysis tools are not imparted to operations, then they are left with only options 2 and 3. 

The purpose of this paper is to present a methodology for implementing an OEE program that promotes continuous improvement through alignment, standardization, and cultural change addressing the several key points. These include agreement on vision and scope, metrics, methods and continuous improvement aspects of an OEE program implementation.

Manage your KPIs over the Web and Smartphones

Brad Carlberg, BSC Engineering


This paper will give a "real-world" example of using the web and smartphones to allow plant operators and engineers to take the plant HMI with them when they leave the control room, the plant, and even the town.  This paper and the associated tutorial will demonstrate how to design, program, implement, and troubleshoot the equipment from representative vendors by showing the respective software used to program and communicate with each of the hardware devices with screen prints from the programs as well as sample third-party interface software (i.e.; HMI’s) that can be used by operators, engineers, and technicians. In this paper and tutorial, Modbus TCP and OPC communication will be used.

The hardware used for the tutorial are all commercially off-the-shelf (COTF) with successful histories of providing industrially-proven instrumentation controllers, signal conversion devices, isolators, and connectors to both end-users and OEM manufacturers.

Using relatively low-cost, modular, ethernet I/O systems which can be configured quickly and communicate with each other AND other computers with off-the-shelf ethernet hubs, switches, and/or routers, the internet can bring field devices from the plant into a SCADA or control system and for remote viewing using cellular technology to extend the ethernet to remote field devices.

Using KPIs to Impact the Business

John Jackiw, Alta Via


Performance is how business is achieving its defined goals and looking to the future with Intelligence for next steps and continuous improvements. Data is pervasive throughout every company, all the way to manufacturing machinery. However with all the data, and calculations available, only key pieces of quantifiable data and information that are used to link departments into an organization and used to define your business goals that become metrics. Manufacturing metrics are often misunderstood, because they involve business, financial and operational elements. The problem is compounded by the fact that the data to support these metrics is typically persisted in a vast number of different system and sometimes also in complex data structures. Creating actionable decisions while supporting the decision process related to managing business and manufacturing performance is a critical component of the business and this balancing act is often a challenge. Balance can be achieved by leveraging specific frameworks that combine information from the different parts of the manufacturing business, from the shop floor operations all the way to the financial functions. Providing the visibility of metrics and intelligence that combines the data across the business allows organizations to measure their performance and improvements in an unprecedented manner.