Industrial Engineer Engineering and Management Solutions at Work

August 2012    |    Volume: 44    |    Number: 8

The member magazine of the Institute of Industrial Engineers

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A strategy for shorter breakdowns

A ‘mini’ Six Sigma approach can resolve downtime problems 

By Saso Krstovski and Ahad Ali

Stress levels are magnified considerably anytime there is an equipment breakdown. The normal practice for many companies is to have all levels of the organization, including management, skill trades, operators and others, get involved as quickly as possible so the issue can be resolved right away. During the crisis, everyone tends to voice their opinions on different solutions, and the option selected typically comes from the individual who has the most convincing idea. Sometimes this works, but at other times operators also apply the next suggested solution because the goal is to fix the equipment and get production back up and running.

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