Wednesday, April 20, 2011

An interesting approach to why do EBR…

I recently attended a good presentation on EBR systems [ok full disclosure, it was a system that we installed and a fellow colleague was presenting].  Naturally, a Q&A session followed the presentation; during the Q&A somebody asked a question about the payback. 
The interesting thing about the question was the frame of reference of the asker; paraphrasing the exchange…
Asker:  “How much reduction in cycle time did the EBR system provide to the operators”?
Presenter:  “None really… it was a wash.”
Asker: “Then why do it?”
I believe that the asker was from a CPG background and thusly so, was of the mindset that EBR/Work ticket systems should let to a direct labor time savings.  Of course the EBR system will lead to time savings, but where is the question.  [As the presenters, did answer]Some of the savings is in OPERATOR direct labor (transcription time, manual logging time, etc.) however, it is in QA REVIEW time that is dramatically reduced.  Naturally there are some other reasons supporting a system like this:
  • •Better Data
    • •Improved accuracy and consistency of the batch record
    • •Increased speed of product introductions and process changes
  • •Production
    • •Reduced cost of compliance
    • •(Some) Increased productivity – i.e. verified by
The major point here is there are a wide variety of reasons that systems are put in place, MESA has defined these as Strategic Initiatives, some of which are Lean Manufacturing, Quality and Regulatory Compliance, Product Lifecycle Management, Real Time Enterprise, Asset Performance and etc.  When considering implementing those, make sure to look up and down stream to fully recognize impacts and capture all benefits.

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