OPTIMIZING OPERATIONS: How Touchscreens Can Motivate Assembly Line Workers to Do Quality Work

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May 16, 2018 – // Manufacturing AUTOMATION // When UTC Aerospace required a solution to manage assembly line workers with no previous manufacturing experience, it decided to try something new that set a precedent for its future manufacturing operations management (MOM) strategy.

Using manufacturing software from PINpoint Information Systems that features situational awareness graphics on plant floor touchscreens, the manufacturer was able to train an unskilled workforce to build safety critical electronics without defects, which actually helped ramp up production within days, said UTC Aerospace. With the software monitoring and controlling the hundreds of process steps needed to build the products, problems and defects could not go unchecked so error-proofing was maximized.

How do touchscreens motivate assembly line workers to do quality work on time? All manufacturing stakeholders become accountable for the quality of the product, and the efficiency or timing in which it is assembled when individuals report to their own workstation touchscreens. The information created through an individual’s interactions with the touchscreens is also broadcasted to large plant floor displays for all team members to see, critique and act on. This manufacturing methodology emphasizes every line worker’s and supervisor’s own responsibility to contribute positively to the overall goal of manufacturing products of high quality in an efficient way, with the least amount of waste produced.

Assembly line workers and area supervisors become fully accountable for the finished product the moment they log into the user interface software with their own unique login and password. Figure 1 is an example of the SmartScreen user interface with various situational awareness graphics reporting the details and real-time performance of the individual line worker/workstation. The information includes the scheduled production time, the real-time status of the Goal Planned Actual (GPA), and Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) which helps ensure the line worker is made aware and of their progress within the cycle time.

assembly line workers

Figure 1: Assembly line touchscreen user interface featuring situational awareness graphics.


Since each manufacturing stakeholder is identified by her/ his own credentials, they must succumb to the first level of assembly line error-proofing. The software behind the user interface touchscreen identifies the worker and then confirms – before any work can start or tools are enabled – whether that person is actually qualified to do the work. The software, PINpoint describes, ensures quality by authenticating that the person has received the proper training to perform the process steps and that they are aware of the latest quality alerts and safety requirements unique to their workstation or process.

At the heart of the user interface software is a manufacturing execution system (MES) and multi-dimensional database containing all the information required to build the product, along with the record of the line worker’s credentials, their training and up-to-the-second historical assembly line performance data.

Once the line worker is verified, the user interface presents the relevant work instructions so they can begin performing the steps to build the product. In the case of the common fastening operation, the user interface displays the tolerances required for the fastening operation. Figure 2 shows a SmartScreen example where the line worker has progressed to Process Step 4 requiring them to perform 20 fastening operations within the parameter set (PSet) of 5.00 – 7.00Nm at an angle of 5 – 7°.

assembly line workers

Figure 2: Fastening operation SmartScreen showing tolerances data visualization.


PINpoint believes the worker is motivated to perform each process step carefully and quickly since they are made aware of the cycle time remaining to complete the operation by way of the cycle time gauge shown at the bottom left side of the main screen. Along the bottom of the screen are coloured bars that can also be configured to visually indicate and further re-enforce how they are progressing.

Once the worker begins performing the fastening operation, the touchscreen displays their Fastening Results step by step with textual data and graphics that shows the worker’s progress. Not only does the touchscreen help guide the worker in each fastening operation, the system monitors their performance and can halt their progress and even turn off their tools should any operation be performed outside the set parameters.

The touchscreen user interface and software not only motivate line workers, they help foster a team-based approach to manufacturing execution that instills a new culture, and closed-loop accountability in the factory where all manufacturing stakeholders are made accountable for what they contribute, describes PINpoint. The data generated by the line workers’ activities and the data recorded from the machines also becomes indispensable as business and manufacturing intelligence reports become increasingly essential for optimizing manufacturing operations.

Anthony Borges, marketing manager at PINpoint Information Systems, offers over 14 years of manufacturing optimization knowledge, with an aptitude for solving problems which increase business and manufacturing efficiency. Headquartered in Burlington, Ont., PINpoint services industry internationally from its offices in Canada, the United States and China.

This feature was originally published in the May 2018 issue of Manufacturing AUTOMATION: https://www.automationmag.com/technology/hardware/8346-optimizing-operations-how-touchscreens-can-motivate-assembly-line-workers-to-do-quality-work


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…By Bringing Full-accountability To Your MOM / #ManufacturingOperationsManagement!”

PINpoint V5 Makes Committing to a Culture of Manufacturing Excellence Practical. Set Your Goals, Leverage Real Time Data to Be Accountable to Those Goals, Make Adjustments, Measure the Effectiveness of Those Decisions and Make Walking The Talk a Way of Life!

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PINpoint Releases Real-time Performance Dashboards for Manufacturing Quality and Efficiency Optimization

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“…PINpoint V5 is distinguished by its’ at-a-glance manufacturing performance dashboards,” said Rob MacMillan, President of PINpoint Information Systems. “Real-time reporting empowers manufacturers to actually know how they are doing, whether they will be able to make rate by the end of the day, and what actions to take if they are trending downward.”

PINpoint Releases New V5 MES Plant Floor Management Software


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“More than a manufacturing execution system, PINpoint V5 is a tool set that empowers all levels of a manufacturing facility to walk the talk,” said Rob MacMillan, President of PINpoint Information Systems. “It enables our customers to develop a culture of accountability in their operations which is necessary for achieving the goal oriented philosophy that creates a reasonable expectation of success.”

The Top 7 Manufacturing Pains Today And How To Remedy Them

There are many common challenges manufacturers face on their assembly lines which must be overcome to produce quality products in the most efficient way. It is after-all the assembly line where products are born, from physical actions, or process steps performed by both line workers and machines. Regardless of the part or the product being built, the goal is to achieve the perfect balance of maximizing the number of process steps they complete to build that product (without defect) within the fastest time.

Step one is identifying the problem, and as the adage states correctly “…you do not know what you do not know.” The means to identify and act upon manufacturing problems is afforded by the Manufacturing Execution System (MES) or Manufacturing Operations Management (MOM) software that both monitors and controls all process steps on your assembly line and provides vital manufacturing data as a result in easy to understand reports.

With over twenty years (20) experience in the error-proofing of complex or safety critical components and products we identified seven (7) manufacturing assembly line pains that still impact manufacturers today:

1.    Pains Due To Not Knowing What Is Happening On The Assembly Line:

How can you optimize your manufacturing if you do not know what to optimize?

MES/MOM software is a tool you can use to consolidate all manufacturing process step data into a single point of access from a website in the cloud. Plant floor communications are also handled by the built in andon system software which can be integrated initially or separately, as an entry-level towards the development of a longer-term MES/MOM monitoring and process control solution. The software is flexible and scalable to an unlimited number of users, work stations, process steps, and assembly lines regardless of location.

2.    Pains Due To Timing And Availability:

Are all needed materials or parts always available on time on the assembly line? Are assembly line workers ‘logged in’ and available to perform process steps on the available product?

Figure 1 is an example MES/MOM screen shot showing the status of manufacturing operations in real-time. The user can hone in on the specific information for a work station (Station View) as shown, or an overview of the assembly line or the plant performance is available. The preconfigured goal of products to be built is simply shown as the ‘PLANNED’ production, and with the ‘ACTUAL’ production data shown below it and updated as it happens.

Each number increment indicates the planned timing of when the line worker or work station should have the process steps assigned to that work station completed, before the product indexes to the next station. As the clock runs the performance timing of the operation is illustrated in terms of ACTUAL cycle time, and Over-all Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) performance metrics. Products are given a status based on a five (5) bucket model that identifies products being worked on as either Waiting (red), Available (orange), Suspended (yellow), Working (blue), or Complete (green).

mes/mom softwareFigure 1: Real-time MES/MOM manufacturing performance dashboard

As the product being built has process steps completed on it by the line workers and machines, e.g. parts are attached, bolts are fastened, and products advance on the assembly line; every single action is confirmed by the human’s interaction with the MES/MOM user-interface screen, and by the signals received from the devices and machines that are monitored/controlled by the MES/MOM (as inputs/outputs turned on/off at a specific time). The screen or dashboard refreshes automatically as progress is made and shows how many products were built and in how much time.

The ACTUAL saw-tooth graph illustrates which products were built within cycle time or not, and the reason why as indicated by the color legend and line transition point for each product; with zero (0) seconds being the counted down goal, and with any data shown below zero indicating an over-cycle time event. For example, if cycle time is exceeded one can determine why the delay happened, such as delays caused by waiting for the line worker, for materials, or for waiting for a product to arrive in the work station so it can be worked on. The individual work station’s created data populates the Over-all Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) calculator accordingly for the work station, line view and plant view. The OEE reporting tool enables the manufacturer to accurately gauge their performance on the go, based on product availability, performance timing, and the product quality resulting.

3.    Pains From Relying On Third-party Companies To Solve Problems They Are Not Qualified To:

Are consultants, integrators or programmable logic controller (PLC) programmers the most knowledgeable of your process to solve your problem?

Who knows your assembly line processes better than your manufacturing management team or manufacturing engineer? Third-party consultants and integrators are typically not directly involved in the day-to-day operations on the plant floor and the hundreds and possibly thousands of process steps needed to assemble a quality product. Additionally, Information Technology (IT) and upper management teams are not as qualified as the manufacturing engineers who create and configure the assembly line directly; but they do however play an integral role in the successful implementation of the MES/MOM software.

Efficient problem solving should lead you to a solution in the least amount of time, in the most cost-effective way, with a resolution to the problem that is flexible and scalable well into the future. Having your engineering, IT and upper management team work directly with a MES/MOM software development company that knows how to monitor and control assembly line workers and device processes is paramount to maximize error-proofing. Regardless of the finished product type, it is the individual process steps performed by human and machine “in a certain way” that ultimately yields a quality or shippable product.

4.    Pains Due To Complex PLC Logic:

How much time, and for what expense does PLC programming contribute to your problem?

It is very time consuming to re-code PLCs and programming is error prone. MES/MOM technology allows for the PLC to do the absolute minimum needed to accomplish its’ main function, i.e. its basic function of turning devices on and off and signalling to the MES/MOM software that it accomplished the requested input or function.

By monitoring PLC inputs and outputs, the MES/MOM software ensures process steps are completed within tolerance, and controls assembly line devices (turned off) when they are not. By halting any process step that yields a mistake performed by a human or machine not meeting the pre-specified tolerance or outcome the issue can be dealt with right-away (to either fix the problem, or re-route the product to a repair work station so production can keep going). The data acquired from the MES/MOM affords the manufacturer instant knowledge of the problem to resolve quality issues on-the-fly.

5.    Pains Due To Wasted Time And Money Incurred Due To Reactionary Measures That Do Not Solve The Broader Issues:

Are you tired of investing in ‘band aid’ or short-term fixes that are not scalable, need frequent maintenance, and upgrading?

At times reactionary measures are unavoidable, decisions need to be made in order to keep production going. Traditionally, these reactionary measures solve the problem for the short-term, but remain a pain because it is known production will again be impacted negatively when the problem arises again.

MES/MOM software affords the manufacturer a solution that is inherently flexible, and scalable indefinitely. MES/MOM software products like PINpoint V5 MES are designed as a long-term solution to address manufacturers daily problems. Visibility is key, and by simply opening a website browser on any computer or device the manufacturer can see at-a-glance how their assembly line is performing, or they can configure and make changes that impact the assembly line instantly from the cloud.

6.    Pains Due To Manufacturing Poor Quality Products:

Have you lost customers and market share due to product quality issues?

Especially pertaining to the quality of a “safety critical” product, any defect could be as catastrophic and costly as the loss of life as a result (mistakes cannot be afforded). A means to error-proof production is a must, which MES/MOM software provides as an absolute protection to assure defective products do not leave the factory.

With MES/MOM systems’ live tracking capabilities the manufacturer can verify the status of any product, serial number or work order from a website on any computer or mobile device. Products that have quality problems, and are in repair work stations can be easily tracked physically on the assembly line, and verified to ensure the defect was resolved.

7.    Pains Due To An Unmotivated Manufacturing Team:

Is employee morale low? Are you benefiting from the full-potential of your people?

Pursuing quality and efficiency is commonplace, but embracing the culture of accountability required to achieve it along with deploying the tools necessary to support that culture is not. MES/MOM software makes committing to a culture of manufacturing excellence practical. By setting your manufacturing goals, and by leveraging real-time data you become accountable to those goals. As you progress and gain more knowledge you can make further adjustments, and measure the effectiveness of those decisions.

Line workers, line supervisors, engineers and executive stakeholders all have a vested interest in the accomplishment of the goal, and therefore all contributing to the goal have their part to play, and their own sense of ownership and accountability in achieving their tasks successfully on time. The manufacturing intelligence metrics output in turn provide verification by way of easy to understand reports.

These common manufacturing pains can all be remedied by the MES/MOM software’s capability to manage your workforce, to configure assembly line tools and devices, and by its capability to inform you.
The information recorded and output as reports for analysis allows your manufacturing team to work from a position of knowledge to positively impact future decisions and actions.

To be competitive manufacturers are forever trying to find ways to save time and save money, i.e. to eliminate the waste caused by repeating the same mistakes, and only addressing problems short-term. The data visibility afforded by the MES/MOM software becomes indispensable once you commit to rely on that accurate data to inform and garner effective decisions backed up by measurable actions.

A culture of accountability is in-turn created when all manufacturing stakeholders clearly understand the goal, and what their personal contribution must be to reach it. The MES/MOM software empowers line workers and supervisors with knowledge by giving them an at-a-glance display of their work in progress; and by informing management of how their over-all operations are performing at any given time. Only by knowing where problems occur on the assembly line can you effectively optimize cycle time or Takt to improve product quality and maximize your plant OEE.


PINpoint Information System’s manufacturing execution system (MES) / manufacturing operations management (MOM) software is meticulously designed and tested to ‘Information Technology Infrastructure Library’ (ITIL) standards before any official version release. Their MES/MOM and Andon communications products have been developed since 1997 and continue to be evolved and pushed-forward by their customers.

Thoroughly proven the software is in use daily around the World in multiple languages by leading manufacturers. Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, PINpoint services industry internationally from their offices in Canada, the United States, and China. For more information, please call: +1 (905) 639-8787, email: sales@pinpointinfo.com or visit: http://pinpointinfo.com/


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PINpoint Information Systems Celebrates 20 Years of Manufacturing Error-proofing Excellence

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PINpoint Information Systems Inc. Burlington, Ontario, has announced its twentieth (20th) anniversary since its founding in 1997. In its 20th year PINpoint is set to once-again revolutionize manufacturing operations management (MOM) / manufacturing execution system (MES) software with the addition of even more powerful data visualization and reporting features; i.e. manufacturing intelligence and business intelligence tools integral for optimizing manufacturing processes to achieve the highest levels of quality and efficiency.

Last year PINpoint introduced Andon 3D, a plant floor communications, product tracking, and manufacturing reporting system recommended as the upgrade for any existing andon system, or, as an entry level into MES system software to build your future MES strategy. Andon 3D has the PINpoint MES PRO (Version 4) software at heart, and given the platform’s flexibility and scalability to adapt to an unlimited number of users, work stations, assembly lines and product variations, the solution is long-term focused to expand as the manufacturer’s operations grow.

PINpoint also introduced powerful data visualization features in its Version 4 products with graphic aids to error-proof assembly line fastening processes. Figure 1. below shows an example “Rundown Detail” screen shot that is displayed for the line worker on “SmartScreen” user interfaces/touchscreens they interact with daily as a guide to production and mistake-proofing. SmartScreen’s present complicated data in visual form so line workers can complete their tasks more effectively without defects in the allocated cycle time. In this example the line worker is guided to run down fasteners or bolts to a pre-set Torque and Angle tolerance to pass the process step.

pinpoint information systems

Figure 1: Example SmartScreen” user interface for error-proofing fastening processes.

Further development of PINpoint’s powerful data visualization technology has been ongoing and is about to change the way industry relates to critical plant floor metrics like OEE. By presenting OEE in real time and providing the ability to ‘play back’ a shift of production, PINpoint will provide users the opportunity to focus on the exact moment efficiency was compromised. By focusing on real time effectiveness of the entire line, PINpoint will provide the information to drive proactive decisions which in turn drive measurable improvements in quality and efficiency.

By simply opening a web browser on any computer or Smartphone manufacturers will be able to watch a movie of their production activities at any speed, with the ability to stop to zero in on a problem; and then analyze the data to understand what really happened, make a change, and then measure the effectiveness of that decision.

“…with a laser focus on maximizing error-proofing with stringent process control measures, PINpoint is solving real, every day assembly line problems other systems are not able to address. We have always designed our software to be a solution our customers can live with day in and day out, and grow with in time. With the upcoming release of our Version 5 it is an exciting time as we strive to provide even greater value to our customers with new features that empower manufacturers to achieve their goal of meeting world class standards” said Rob MacMillan, President of PINpoint Information Systems.

PINpoint is scheduled to release Version 5 of its software the Summer of 2017. It includes more advanced data visualization features with data playback capabilities and cutting-edge reporting tools. PINpoint software is designed and tested to ‘Information Technology Infrastructure Library’ (ITIL) standards before any official version release. PINpoint’s Andon 3D and MES PRO manufacturing execution system continue to be evolved and pushed-forward by leading manufacturers. Thoroughly proven PINpoint software is in use every day Worldwide in multiple languages by leading automotive, heavy machinery, aerospace, military, marine, agricultural, power sports vehicle manufacturers and more.

Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, PINpoint services industry Internationally from their offices in Canada, the United States, and China. For more information, please contact PINpoint at +1 905-639-8787sales@pinpointinfo.com or visit their website http://pinpointinfo.com

SOURCE PINpoint Information Systems, Inc.




Andon 3D Released: Assembly Line Communications, Manufacturing Tracking and Reporting Evolved




Andon 3D Released: Assembly Line Communications,
Manufacturing Tracking and Reporting Evolved

BURLINGTON, Ontario, Dec 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — PINpoint Information Systems, Inc. Burlington, Ontario, has announced the release of Andon 3D, a cutting-edge manufacturing software which is the industries most evolved for assembly line communications, product tracking, and manufacturing reporting. Much more than traditional andon systems that feature stack lights and push buttons, Andon 3D is able to provide manufactures valuable insight into their manufacturing operations; essential information they need to know on how an assembly line is really running in order to maximize error-proofing and improve quality.

Andon 3D is a tool set that identifies the myriad of every day scenarios that play out on the assembly line; it then provides manufacturers instant visibility of that information. It helps manufacturers visualize every action, good or bad, that has a direct impact on efficiency. Manufacturers can now easily meet their daily demands of quality, efficiency and flexibility with an out-of-the-box software solution. Andon 3D is a modern approach to every day manufacturing challenges and it is essential for improving Goal, Planned, Actual and OEE targets.

At the foundation of Andon 3D technology is PINpoint’s Manufacturing Execution System (MES) called MES PRO; a long-term proven web based configurable plant floor management solution. Andon 3D includes many of the features found in the MES system, which makes it the ideal entry to develop your future manufacturing execution system strategy. It includes features like SmartBuild, which Engineering managers can access by opening a website to visualize and configure assembly line operations in real-time from any computer, tablet or Smartphone.

On the assembly line, station operators interact with their own SmartScreen touch displays at each work station. They provide the line worker info she/he needs to complete assembly process steps, and the timing. It also presents the line worker with Andon help buttons for when issues arise, as when time is running out, in order to call for help to avoid a line stoppage. Please see Figure 1 for additional SmartScreen features:

assembly-line-andonFigure 1. Andon 3D station operator SmartScreen user interface example.

From OEE to Waterfall Reports, operating efficiency is the focus of any good manufacturing operation. The problem is that most manufacturing management systems lack the sophistication to generate data with the resolution to provide meaningful metrics from the shop floor. Andon 3D puts performance metrics forefront for all to see; they are displayed on every operator’s SmartScreen user interface so there is no question as to how work is progressing compared to cycle time.

“…just open a web browser to start optimizing; drag-and-drop to create an assembly line, to add products, schedule production, and track your products. The data captured from production is available for analysis in real time, and is invaluable for improvements in manufacturing to occur,” said Rob MacMillan, President of PINpoint.

Leveraging the same DNA as PINpoint’s MES PRO to accurately track the flow of products on the line, Andon 3D provides visibility of work orders and all products in process, and tells you whether they are in a station or not. By generating laser focused data, it drives proactive decision making. Manufacturers benefit instantly from Andon 3D’s key components that allow users to:

Set a Manufacturing Schedule:

The Scheduler website provides a visual configuration tool to define when you are working, when you are on break, or to change your production rate.

Set a Production Goal

Set your goal for your manufacturing schedule or daily circumstances in real time. Own the flexibility to configure your Andon system to reflect how you really want to run.

Know Goal, Planned, Actual:

Instantly see your metrics for a station or the line. Change your Goal or TAKT time and watch all your station clients update dynamically.

Generate Events from Man or Machine:

Andon systems are all about communication. Modern communication should not solely rely on an operator deciding to push a button. The business logic driven by Andon 3D can decide when to raise an event based on line conditions or an input from peripheral equipment.

Use a Website Browser to Modify Andon:

Use your browser to configure how your Andon system communicates in your plant. Leverage e-mail, text messages, sound, a Big Screen display or even talk to a peripheral machine to distribute your notifications. PINpoint can escalate notifications based on time or suppress messages based on who is scheduled to be on duty.

Track Products in Real Time:

Create a Product, a Route for that product and create a Work Order to build it. Andon 3D knows how long each product spends in a station, who worked on it, if it was over cycle, or if help was required. Its tracking capability is the foundation that empowers your Andon system to tell the real story.

Analyze Production Metrics:

Data management is more than just feeding a database. It is transforming data into information and presenting it in an effective way so it can drive proactive decision making. Andon 3D’s Reporting engine is built on the latest analytic cube technology and provides ultimate flexibility in how you look at your production data.


PINpoint Information System’s software is designed and tested to ‘Information Technology Infrastructure Library’ (ITIL) standards before any official version release. PINpoint’s Andon 3D and MES PRO manufacturing execution system (MES) software have been developed since 1997 and continue to be evolved and pushed-forward by leading manufacturers. Thoroughly proven their software products are in use every day Worldwide in multiple languages by leading automotive, aerospace, heavy machinery, agricultural, power sports vehicle manufacturers and more.

Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, PINpoint services industry globally from their offices in Canada, the United States, and China. For more information, please contact PINpoint at +1 905-639-8787sales@PINpointinfo.com or visit their website http://pinpointinfo.com

SOURCE PINpoint Information Systems, Inc.





Introducing Andon 3D Error-proofing User Interface


Andon 3D by PINpoint Information Systems is a modern twist on assembly line operator user interfaces. Andon 3D is not your traditional HMI or SCADA, it is an error-proofing solution overseeing manufacturing operations and the actions of the line operator. It operates above or next to HMI and SCADA; and unlike those traditional systems, Andon 3D is the ultimate plant floor communication, product tracking and manufacturing reporting system essential for improving manufacturing efficiencies.

At the foundation of the Andon 3D technology is PINpoint’s Manufacturing Execution System (MES), a long-term proven website based configurable plant floor management solution. Andon 3D includes many of the features found in PINpoint’s MES system, which makes it the ideal entry to develop your future manufacturing execution system strategy. PINpoint includes all the manufacturing optimization tools you need in a turn-key paperless manufacturing solution, starting with SmartBuild. Simply open the SmartBuild website to visualize and configure your assembly line in real-time from any computer, tablet or Smartphone.

Line operators interact with their own SmartScreen touch displays at each work station. It provides the line worker information she/he needs to complete assembly process steps, and the timing. It also presents the line worker with andon help buttons for when issues arise, as when time is running out, in order to call for help to avoid a line stoppage. Please see Figure 1 for additional SmartScreen features:


Figure 1. Andon 3D error-proofing SmartScreen user interface example.

The first order of error-proofing at any station is the verification of ‘who’ is working there (logged in), or not. Immediately the system can determine whether that operator is even qualified to do the tasks at hand; if they are, the system allows them to proceed and provides work instructions.

If we dig deeper we can extract even more details about the efficiency of the work station and line operator. For example, if an operator is not logged in at their work station when a product is available to be worked on, would you not want to know why? Alternatively, if an operator is logged in at their station, and no product is available to be worked on, then why or how did that happen? Only Andon 3D can give you the insight required to identify such time depleting details of cycle time that ultimately accumulate and cause over-cycle events.

All the data or interactions of the line operator with the SmartScreen user interface are monitored and recorded, and can be reported on using Andon 3D’s Production Analytics feature. It is the manufacturing intelligence afforded by the Andon 3D system that leads to the implementation of effective continuous improvement initiatives. All plant floor communications and product data are captured into the PINpoint “Cube” multi-dimensional database, which is manipulated easily in a web browser or by using Microsoft Excel with Production Analytics to report on a multitude of manufacturing operations specifics, right down to cycle-time losses.

Production Analytics gives you valuable insight into where it is your cycle time is going, how it is being allocated, and how it can be improved to the finest detail. It allows you to find out exactly where it is on your assembly line bottlenecks in time are occurring, and who caused them. This vital information allows the manufacturer to take decisive actions to remedy the issue, be it re-allocating cycle time elsewhere, or process steps to another station. Andon 3D is a flexible and scalable error-proofing solution that adapts to your unique manufacturing processes; it gives you the visibility needed to make changes in real-time that impact your bottom line instantly.

Andon 3D Error-proofing Software

PINpoint’s Andon 3D and manufacturing execution system (MES) called MES PRO have been developed since 1997 and continue to be evolved and pushed-forward by leading manufacturers. Thoroughly proven our software is in use daily around the World in multiple languages by leading automotive, aerospace, heavy machinery, agricultural, power sports vehicle manufacturers and more. PINpoint software is meticulously designed and tested to ‘Information Technology Infrastructure Library’ (ITIL) standards before any official version release. Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, PINpoint services industry internationally from their offices in Canada, the United States, and China. For more information, please call: +1 (905) 639-8787, email: sales@pinpointinfo.com or visit: http://pinpointinfo.com


Download our latest Andon 3D product brochure here:
PINpoint Andon 3D Product Brochure

See the “Why PINpoint?” prezi here:


VIDEO: PINpoint MES System Production Analytics Demonstration – Part 3 (Valuable Reports)

PINpoint ultimately provides our clients valuable manufacturing reports integral to improving manufacturing processes. PINpoint ‘Production Analytics‘ comes pre-loaded with many manufacturing reports you can customize yourself, and save as favorites for daily viewing, including indispensable Cycle Time reports, Andon and OPE reports (see example Figure 1).


manufacturing reports

Manufacturing Reports Video

PINpoint manufacturing intelligence reports demonstrated in Part 3 of the Production Analytics Demonstration video below:

+ Daily Average Cycle Time by Station Report
+ Product Average Cycle Time by Station Report
+ Daily Average Cycle Time by Station Operator Report
+ Daily Bypasses by Station Report
+ Daily Bypasses by Reason Report
+ Total Daily Exceptions Report
+ Daily Exceptions by Station Report
+ Product Exceptions Report
+ Fastening Rundown Report
+ Fastening Tool ID/Serial Number Report
+ Daily Job Starts Report
+ And Many More Manufacturing Reports


Manufacturing optimization is only possible with the analysis of the data or manufacturing reports afforded by the manufacturing execution system. PINpoint is the only out of the box MES system that both ‘monitors’ and ‘controls’ the assembly line, all data which is captured in the PINpoint “Cube” multidimensional database for manipulation by the software’s Production Analytics feature.

Every tool a manufacturer needs to improve assembly line processes is included in the package; with PINpoint there is no extensive consultation required, there is no custom PLC programming, there are no modules to add, and therefore no added labor cost. By simply opening a web browser on any computer, tablet or phone to access the PINpoint portal website, the user can configure any aspect of assembly in real time. For leading manufactures Worldwide PINpoint is the go-to error-proofing system; it is a proven, turn-key, value-added, long-term manufacturing operations management (MOM) solution.

Headquartered in Burlington, Ontario, PINpoint services industry internationally from their offices in Canada, the United States, and China. For more information please call: +1 (905) 639-8787, email: sales@pinpointinfo.com or visit: http://pinpointinfo.com/


See the “Why PINpoint?” prezi presentation here:


Evolution of the Andon System

PINpoint continues to evolve its time proven manufacturing software with the addition of Andon system functionality into SmartScreen, the station level software that station operators interact with daily. SmartScreen touch displays are vital to the error-proofing solution; each and every configured user, be it line worker, area supervisor or plant manager is guided by them. When an operator first logs in at their station SmartScreen identifies who the person is, and verifies whether they are qualified to do the work assigned. If the worker is not certified or trained to perform the process steps SmartScreen will not allow the worker to proceed, and tools or any connected devices will remain off or locked.

Once a station operator is verified they are presented with all the information they need to complete their tasks, starting with paperless work instructions and quality alerts; SmartScreen is the workers personal guide to complete the process steps in the cycle or TAKT time allotted. As work proceeds and issues arise, the Andon system functions are prominently displayed on the SmartScreen (see Figure 1.). As shown the SmartScreen is quite informational and interactive, it is designed to lead its user in the most efficient manner to complete process steps and resolve issues quickly on-the-fly. As problems happen the line operator has multiple Andon system functions to choose from; a ‘red’ attention button can be pressed for critical problems requiring a line interruption; or a ‘yellow’ button to call for supervisor help, and when materials are low a ‘blue’ button is easy to spot and press.andon system

Figure 1. PINpoint SmartScreen Andon System

You can also add custom buttons; PINpoint is a ‘configurable’ web based manufacturing execution system, therefore the Andon system and all components of SmartScreen can be customized for your unique manufacturing environment. Once pressed a number of notifications can be triggered, including the turning on of stack lights, and/or alerts can be displayed on big screens for all to see (with colors, graphics or video to draw attention); also audible notifications, email and text messages can be sent. Further, the PINpoint Andon system is much more than push buttons and stack lights, it can be configured to raise notifications on its own, in addition to the manual inputs by the station operator.

Should a line worker for example fall behind in completing their process steps, the system can be configured to raise a Cycle Time ‘Warning’ Event. Essentially as cycle time is depleted and the SmartScreen tracks the line operators progress, a time threshold can be configured to raise a notification alarm before the issue escalates further; a warning to inform both the operator of their situation and to draw attention to the area line supervisor for help. A Cycle Time ‘Over’ Event is also configurable, should the line operator not complete the process steps in the configured cycle time a notification can be raised.

The configurablility of the Andon system or manufacturing execution system is as easy as opening a web browser to access the PINpoint portal; from there the process engineer can configure the assembly line and process steps timing using ‘SmartBuild‘, schedule production with ‘Scheduler‘, verify product status and location with ‘Tracking‘, and access manufacturing intelligence with ‘Production Analytics’. With Production Analytics you output reports crucial to improving assembly processes, including Andon Analytics (see Figure 2.):


Andon System

Figure 2. Andon System Analytics


Changes and tracking are in real time, and all of these features and more are provided in one package, making PINpoint the most value-added Andon system and manufacturing execution system on the market – everything a manufacturer needs to optimize their operations is available out-of-the-box, PINpoint is a long-term proven solution that is designed to be flexible and scalable to grow with you as your manufacturing operations expand into the future.

Please do not hesitate to contact PINpoint with any questions, please call: (905) 639-8787, or email: sales@pinpointinfo.com or visit: http://pinpointinfo.com/


Interactive Presentation: https://prezi.com/adp9dhp3vgn0/why-pinpoint-manufacturing-execution-system-mes-manufacturing-operations-management-mom-solutions/

Production Analytics Demo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLAGW_6faiM&list=PLvRjiER8QiZo3CyNn-i9Pc7oAxT7M65Ig