Weight Control

A steel plant with multiple work centers on multiple production routes, tried to record scrap generated in different work centers by measuring length of cut off material. Weighing of the waste was not practical due to size and shape of cuts. Length measurements proved to be imprecise and eventually all scrap was piled up on the same place, while information where it was generated remained hidden.

Operation management decided to install a new weighing scale in order to control material weight before entry and after exit from any work center, in order to get the exact weight of scrapped material. This became cumbersome for the operators, since they had to input weight in multiple places (MES, ERP, paper sheets), so they used various excuses trying to neglect this new procedure. 

By connecting the scale to existing MES, and by minimal modification in MES forwarding weight info to the ERP, and establishing very simple steps of procedure in which operators only use dedicated barcode scanner to provide material tracking id just before the weighting, reasons to avoid the procedure all but diminished, and it finally became clear where and in what amount is waste generated, what enabled further steps of optimization.