In the world of manufacturing systems several acronyms and buzzwords have evolved over the last 10-15 years. MES, MOM, EMI, KPI, OEE are just a few of the many acronyms that have emerged. The growth of the acronyms is from the many research groups that try to create a market segment for each one of these areas. The bottom line is that most of these areas focus on collecting, analyzing, and presenting manufacturing related information so that management can have the information needed to improve or maintain optimal operations. A brief look at a few of these:
- MES Manufacturing Execution System. More complex than most terms and can mean anything from a simple data collection system to a complete system that connects the shop floor to the top floor.
- MOM Manufacturing Operations Management Could be closely related to MES but in general it is the collection and analysis of data related to the manufacturing process.
- EMI Enterprise Manufacturing Intelligence is another twist on the collection and presentation of manufacturing data. They throw the enterprise term in as it includes the information from many sources and/or manufacturing facilities.
- KPI Key Performance Indicators Pretty self-explanatory. Most operations people have a few measurements that they can look at and decide if the operations are at the level desired. If all is well they continue on, if not they dig deeper into the problem.
- OEE Overall Equipment Effectiveness This measurement is a numeric percentage that gives the person reviewing it a snapshot of how things are running. For example, a plant may have an OEE of 85%.
If you compare all the acronyms it usually comes down to the process of collecting data, analyzing it, and presenting it. Many operation have the information, they just don’t have the understanding or patience to mine through it and simplify it. The majority of us are visual people so what we need is a quick picture of a situation to tell us good or bad. The higher the information goes in an organization the more time people spend breaking it down so the executives will have that instant look at it and understand the story.
Rather than getting caught up in the hype about what acronym to focus on, choose a partner that has a solid understanding of manufacturing, and can mine through the data and present the information in the visual format your executives are looking for.