Zero Error Mind-Set at GF Machining Solutions

Andreas BandiGF Machining Solutions works according to the Zero-Error Mind-Set which corresponds to the Comprehensive Production System. The sense and purpose of this system is to avoid the passing-on of the errors that have been created to the following work steps. Thus, the product and process quality is inevitably improved.
Andreas Bandi (Industrial Manager at GF Machining Solutions at the Nidau factory) describes how the LLQA software solution will support GF Machining Solutions to reduce the error rate and increase speed.

At the Nidau factory of GF Machining Solutions, approx. 400 high-speed and high-performance milling machines are produced per year which are used worldwide in mould and tool construction as well as for the production of precision parts.

“One of our core competences consists of innovative customer-specific machine solutions. More and more customers want specific special solutions. For certain machine models, the percentage of special solutions is already at 30 – 60 % of the machines being produced. This trend is increasing”, Mr. Bandi explains.

At GF Machining Solutions, machine production is done on a synchronised assembly line based upon the principles of lean production. Each work step is logged by the assembly line workers. At the end of the synchronised assembly line, a Q-Gate is implemented. The employee uses a checklist to check his work and sends the machine to the employee at the next stage of the synchronised assembly line. Based upon the four-eye principle, this employee once again checks the work that has been done by his colleague. Moreover, all checks and measurements of the commissioning, geometric checks and functional tests are logged. Per machine, far more than 1’000 individual points are measured or logged.

“Until the introduction of the paperless web application LLQA in December 2016, we printed out one folder per machine for the assembly line documentation which had up to 180 pages”, according to Mr. Bandi.

The LLQA solution enables GF Machining Solutions to create electronically-configured production documentation very quickly and easily which contains only the respective options of the machine. Multiple persons can simultaneously retrieve information in the value-creation process and log work steps or record measurements. The scanning of the paper documentation that has been filled out is now finally a thing of the past. The paper consumption is thus reduced immensely.

“The web-based quality assurance solution LLQA precisely fulfils our requirements in order to continue to reduce the error rate. All processes are transparent and traceable. For example, we quickly see the current status and can create automated evaluations of all entries. Our quality becomes more transparent and our focus is focussed even more on our processes and our quality. One part of the success of this solution is also based upon the cooperation and the knowledge of Hanspeter Lüdi. The cooperation with him and the Diso developers will help us to attain substantially more progress in order to attain our Strategy 2020 goal – the paperless synchronised assembly line process”, Mr. Bandi emphasises.

“The LLQA electronic production documentation is introduced in a graduated manner. This gives the employees the opportunity to successively familiarise themselves with the new technology. We think that we thus can continue to increase the employees’ acceptance. During the test phase, it was good to very good”, Mr. Bandi reports. “Our goal is that, by September 2017, LLQA will be introduced on all our machine models.”

In the coming years, the LLQA solution will be rolled out in other production sites of the GFMS Group and interfaces to SAP, measuring machines and industry-specific solutions will be realised. The software solution will be a forerunner for more complex products and processes.

An additional future scenario for the use of the LLQA solution at GF Machining Solutions will be the use by the GFMS Customer Service. The engineers are supposed to be able to implement the commissioning of the machine on-site at the customer’s with the application and be able to access all information from the factory. Long-term ideas even focus on the GF customers being able to use the application as a diagnostic tool.