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How to Label Machine Downtime and Create Accountability with Teams Using Amper

Implementing a utilization tracking system like Amper is an effective way to manage machine downtime. However, you’ll need to enable your supervisors and managers to create accountability with the system and with operators. Ultimately, operators will be the ones responsible for identifying machine downtime root causes.

Here are a few easy steps to help you start holding your managers accountable for machine downtime using Amper’s system:

Understand Codes

Simplify your downtime codes so the operators can easily know what to enter. Ask your operators for feedback on how to best do this. After all, they’re the ones who witness and diagnose downtime. Here are some core downtime codes you may want to create to identify machine downtime root causes:

  • Break/Lunch
  • Meeting
  • Training
  • Setup
  • Waiting on Material
  • Machine Crash/Breakdown
  • No Job to Run
Label Codes

Rule of thumb: when it comes to determining which downtime codes to use, it’s important to make sure they are actionable. For example, instead of using “No Person Scheduled” you might use “Need a Hire” or “Not Enough People Scheduled”. Essentially, you want to look at a downtime code, and know immediately what type of project to do.

Additionally, when identifying what downtime codes to use, you’ll want to make them simple and one level. If you see a lot of downtime in “Machine Crash/Breakdown” you can always add sub-levels later to understand what exactly is breaking down.

Implement & Train

(Blog Graphic) Label Machine Downtime

Once you’ve identified what your downtime codes are, capture them in a document that you’ll then post throughout the plant, so people understand when and why a machine downtime code should be used.

Conduct a training event with operators. Set a goal for minimizing unlabeled downtime—i.e., "We only want 10% of our downtime to go unlabeled for this quarter."

Track & Enforce

(Blog Graphic) Label Machine Downtime (1)

Set up a tracking system, so you can create a weekly machine downtime root causes report for top managers showing how the team is doing.

Use Amper alerts to set up automatic notifications if operators aren’t labeling downtime. For example, an alert might read: "If I have 5 unlabeled events at each machine over the course of one hour, send a text to a supervisor. If there are 10 unlabeled events, send a text to the plant manager."

Set up an unlabeled downtime report to be sent one hour before the end of a shift to identify which machines are showing excessive unlabeled downtime. Make it part of your process to send supervisors and managers out to the floor before the shift ends to correct them.

Celebrate & Identify a Project

Create some friendly competition. Ask each department or shift to audit the other for its percentage of unlabeled machine downtimes. Do this for two weeks and keep score. The department or shift that wins gets lunch!

Celebrate at the end of the quarter. Start a project off of the labeled downtime to show operators that their hard work has value.

For more detailed information on managing machine downtime root causes, see our Case Articles or download our free A3 Problem Solving Template.

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