FreePoint Helps Client Increase Productivity by 25%

The following case study demonstrates how FreePoint’s technologies were successfully used by a manufacturer to help increase their productivity by 25% in one year.

The customer is an Ontario-based machine tool shop. All of the company’s orders are for custom, single unit production. The following figures and study focus on their 6 most critical machines.  

Mills: Oct – Dec 2015 vs Oct – Dec 2016 Baseline

To establish a baseline for comparison, the chart below shows the operating time for the mills for the period of October 1 to December 23 for 2015 and 2016 on a 24 hour X 5 basis.

In 2015, the average spindle time was 30.78% and for the same period in 2016, the average was 38.58%. This equates to an increase of 562 minutes, or 9.4 hours of additional utilization per week, per machine, or 1.2 extra shifts per week per machine. This represents a 25% increase over the same period last year.

Calculated net benefit:

The net improvement achieved in the operation of the mills in 2016 would be 141% of the cost of one full time operator for one shift. Assuming one full time operator costs the company $100K (all in cost), the net cost benefit would be $141K. Or looked at another way, if one hour of machine time generates $80 in revenue, the added revenue created equals 9.4hrs X 6 machines X 52 weeks X $80 = $234,624.     

“Value Added Time” vs Spindle Time

The charts in this report are all based on the actual spindle running under load minutes. The FreePoint system uses a proprietary algorithm to determine “value adding time” because the spindle is often not on the entire time that the part is being machined. The value adding calculation is reflective of the period of time the machine is productively busy. For the critical machines in this particular year-over-year report, the algorithm calculated that the “value added” time is typically 1.8 X the actual spindle running under load time. The net financial benefits shown above could arguably be adjusted by this factor (making the net positive effect over $420,000).

Mills: 2016 year overall

The charts below show the mills for the entire year. The chart on the left shows the seasonal trends for the year. January and February are slow, March to June are strong, July and August are flat again, and then September to December are strong again.



The chart on the left shows all the machines week by week while the chart on the right shows each machine for the year.

On a 24 X 5 basis (24 hours per day, 5 days per week), the total average utilization time for all the mills in 2016 was 33.5%.

Mills 2016: Quarter by Quarter

On a quarter by quarter basis, you can clearly see the seasonal ebbs and flows: January and February are slow, March to June are strong, July and August are flat again, and then September to December are strong again.

Spindle time vs revenue generation time

The “spindle” time captured represents the time the spindle is working on the part and creating revenue. Setup and teardown are also other activities that are often factored into the cost of the job and are therefore could be considered as “revenue creating”. FreePoint’s ShiftWorx platform is capable of capturing set up times and tear down times, but this information is often already available from many company’s ERP systems.

Down Time Code and Notifications Modules now available:

Downtime codes can now also be collected by the ShiftWorx system. This function was not used by this customer in 2016, but it is available, along with email and text alarm and alert notifications.

For more information on how FreePoint can help you increase productivity, please contact info@getfreepoint.comRemember, you can’t improve what you don’t measure!