Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE)


Availability, Performance and Quality

Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) is an index comprising 3 components Availability, Performance and Quality. OEE is a very severe test of machine performance since it is the product of 3 factors. It is useful because it is directly related to the 3 big losses.

  • Breakdowns and changeovers from the availability measure
  • Minor stops and reduced speed from the performance measure
  • Non-conforming items and process scrap from the quality measure

OEE can therefore for identifying the potential areas for improvement within a piece of equipment.

However, Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) is just a measure and to bring benefits needs something more. That something more is a loss management process


The basic elements of Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE)

Loss management is one of the foundation stones of all other manufacturing improvement activities. The loss management process involves the collection, analysis, and reviewing of production loss data. Informed decisions can then be made to improve overall productivity. This process is assisted by a structured approach, shop floor control and monitoring and management review.

The basic elements of Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) is a loss management process are:

  • A process for capturing production performance data
  • An agreed standard measure of plant efficiency and effectiveness
  • A process for analysing production data to identify the biggest loss areas and identifying root causes
  • A process for developing and implementing improvement actions
  • A methodology for regularly reviewing plant efficiency, losses and improvement plans


It is difficult to predict performance

It is difficult to predict performance without a detailed understanding of the current performance and opportunities for improvement.

A typical packing line producing tablets could expect overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) levels of 75% to be achievable in the short to medium term. However, from our experience of UK, Europe and South East Asia pharmaceutical plants, we seldom see levels above 55%.

We would suggest that in the vast majority of cases Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) improvements of 10-15% are easily achievable in almost all plants that we visit.

Does your Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) measure up?

Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) improvements of 10-15% are easily achievable. Find out more…

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