Graduate Research Papers


Open Access Graduate Research Paper


As part of a Lean Manufacturing journey, much research looks at Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) elements and how they can be utilized individually and as a system working together. These elements include availability, performance, and quality. Availability can be addressed as part of a Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) program. Performance is examined through understanding the impact of cycle time, standards, set-up reduction, and productivity of employees. The Quality element is examined through scrap factors and waste due to producing non-conforming material. Developing a thorough Quality plan incorporating systems like Total Quality Management helps create structure for measurement and evaluation.

Though much research focuses on the elements, an underlying component critical to the success of each area is often overlooked. That component is the manpower or employee, which supports the integration and sustainability of OEE. The purpose of this research is to examine how OEE can impact the performance of the manufacturing area and understand if it is a reasonable tool for everyday use on the shop floor by employees. In addition to use by employees, do all levels of management and support areas consider OEE a valuable tool? This research will attempt to answer a couple basic questions:

1. Does it provide information that is useful to drive Continuous Improvement for operators, managers, and the business in general?

2. What elements of OEE are most beneficial to upper management, supervisors, operators, and maintenance teams?

Research was conducted through a survey that exams existing system data collection, online investigation, as well as internal questionnaires and experience within the current organization.

The survey found that availability, performance, and quality elements of OEE are valid shop floor measurement tools. Wage and salary employees can utilize TrakSys, a software package that collects data on OEE to drive continuous improvement opportunities in all areas of OEE. It also found that open, continuous communication supports advancement of ideas and progress towards company goals and objectives. Further research, auditing, and surveys can gather additional information that can be utilized to generate new and innovative ways to measure and track performance. TrakSys/OEE metrics yield results that drive sustained, continuous improvement.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Master of Arts


Department of Technology

First Advisor

Julie Zhang


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Date Original


Object Description

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