Archive of Operational Excellence - MAVERICK Rethinking Automation

Understanding Machine Safety Analysis In The U.S. (Part 1)

Posted by Karl Schrader on December 11, 2012 @ 11:17 am

A few years ago, I was working with an internal integration group for a manufacturing company which had facilities in many domestic and international locations. One of the initiatives I had undertaken was to redevelop procedures for assessing safety hazards on automated equipment. Safety_WorkPlace_MachineWith the planned adoption of the International Standards Organization document ISO:13849-1:2006, the older EN-954 standard was slated for retraction by the European Standards Organization. Anticipating this retraction, we needed to take another look at our own risk analysis and mitigation procedures in order to maintain complia...

Continue ReadingView Comments (1)

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Overcoming Network Obfuscation

Posted by Karl Schrader on October 30, 2012 @ 10:20 am

Within the field of manufacturing automation, we face hurdles unique to the ways industrial control systems communicate. This often leads to piecemeal approaches to communication architecture development and installation. With a careful approach, legacy communication systems can be converted to higher performing systems, capable of providing connectivity without sacrificing security. With the ever growing need for real-time data related to manufacturing, two of the largest concerns are accessibility and security. While these two requirements, at first glance, appear to be at odds with each other, cues can be taken from existing IT technologies which can lead to successfu...

Continue ReadingLeave a Comment

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Tags: , , ,

How Recipes and Specs Impact Your Entire Company – Part 2

Posted by John Clemons on August 22, 2012 @ 7:37 am

The last time we talked about recipes and specifications I made a big point that while only a few people in the company were responsible for managing recipes and specifications, almost every single person in the company used some data from the recipes and specifications at some time or the other. I hope you’ve had some time to think about this.  And, I bet you’ve come to the conclusion that I may not be 100% correct in that everyone in the company uses the recipes and specifications from time to time, but you realize that there are a lot more people that use the recipes and specifications than you ever thought about before. So, this time, I’d like to talk about one other aspect of the recipes and specifications that is very important.  And, I’d like to frame it in terms of some questions. Continue ReadingLeave a Comment

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Tags: , , , ,

Doing Your Homework – Part 2

Posted by John Clemons on June 27, 2012 @ 7:33 am

In the last post I gave you some homework around the idea of operational excellence.  I hope you did your homework and learned some things. In this post, I’d like to keep this idea of homework going and extend it to the idea of manufacturing agility.  Manufacturing agility is a little more complicated and is usually only really possible once you’ve mastered at least the basics of operational excellence. But, manufacturing agility is what makes a good manufacturing plant a great plant.  And, it’s the thing that really helps accelerate profit and market share growth. Manufacturing agility is all about changing products easily and quickly.  It’s about changing the processes and changing the equipment just as easily and quickly.  It’s even about changing the back-end business processes and being able to make these changes in as close to zero cost, zero time, and with ...

Continue ReadingLeave a Comment

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Tags: , , , , ,

Doing Your Homework – Part 1

Posted by John Clemons on June 13, 2012 @ 7:50 am

You’ve probably heard me talk before about the idea of operational excellence. In additional to operational excellence, I’ve probably called it manufacturing performance, predictable manufacturing, or even reliable manufacturing. It’s the basic idea that in manufacturing there’s just some things that you have to do right. Like attack the waste streams and control variability and ensure consistency. You need to adhere to your schedules, achieve regulatory compliance, and work on ways to optimize performance. I could talk about it all day, but I’d like to do something different. I’d simply like to take these ideas and turn them back around to you.  I’d like to ask you to go do some homework. I’ve got some questions here that I’d like to ask you to think about. Or even go out and investigate a little bit. I bet there’s some of these questions that you don’t h...

Continue ReadingLeave a Comment

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Tags: , , , , ,