5 Ways to Drive Continuous Improvement with Welding Information Management Systems
Improving the efficiency of a welding operation depends largely on knowing what actually needs to change in order for a company to reach its goals. It is difficult to increase productivity, generate greater quality or reduce costs if there isn't a solid starting point. It's just as difficult to track the effectiveness of continuous improvement initiatives without a clear way to monitor the results. Welding information management systems are a good option to drive change in the welding operation.
Welding information management systems are a good option to drive change in the welding operation. At the highest level, these systems provide two key benefits:
- Real time, factual data that helps owners and management identify and rectify issues quickly.
- The ability to measure the impact of continuous improvement efforts.
Welding information management systems available today can range from basic to advanced. Each has its own advantages, and can be used on either semi-automatic or robotic applications. These systems eliminate the need for time-consuming manual data collection and analysis, but the decision of which one to implement depends on a company’s specific business strategies and goals. For example, operations that require welding on large components with long cycle times will need different productivity metrics than ones producing many small pieces throughout the day. These metrics can range from total arc-on time for the day for low-volume production versus the number of parts produced for high-volume production.
Basic welding information management systems are designed to drive quality and productivity improvements, primarily through the monitoring of arc-on time and deposition rates. Advanced welding information management systems do the same, but provide much more detailed feedback. They also give companies complete control over the entire fabrication and welding process, from loading fixtures to welding and post-welding activities.
When implementing any type of welding information management system, it’s critical to know the ways that data can be used to drive real change. Here are five ways to drive continuous improvement using this technology.
This article is an exclusive feature published in The Fabricator, December 2014. To read the full article, please click here.