How Run at Rate (RAR) Helps to Identify Potential Risks and Drive Continuous Improvement

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Run at Rate (RAR) is an essential technique for manufacturing and industrial organizations. The aim is to understand and optimize production processes, by understanding the output efficiency and effectiveness of each process. In this article, we explore the method of RAR, its benefits, relevance to quality, and reporting format.

What is Run at Rate?

As globalization continues to accelerate and technology advances, manufacturing organizations face an increasingly competitive landscape. Efficiency, cost management, and quality control have become critical factors for success in this demanding environment. One technique that has emerged as a powerful tool for optimizing the manufacturing process and minimizing the cost of poor quality is Run at Rate.

Run at Rate is a process used in manufacturing to test the efficiency and capacity of a production line. It involves operating the production line at its maximum intended capacity for a specific period to determine if it can meet the desired production targets. This helps companies identify potential bottlenecks or critical risks that may jeopardies the product quality when running at that speed. From there, areas of improvement can be identified to ensure the production line can consistently produce products at the required quality level.

In other words, Run at Rate is essential for confirming that a manufacturing system can meet the capacity demand while maintaining the expected level of quality. It enables organizations to identify potential risks and drive continuous improvements to reduce the cost of poor quality (COPQ), enhance overall efficiency, and maintain competitiveness.

Run at Rate: Methodology and Approach

The methodology can be broken down into the following steps:

Step 1: Define Objectives and Scope Before starting the RAR: It’s essential to define the objectives and scope of the evaluation. This may include identifying the production lines, specific machines, or processes that will be involved in the Run at Rate. It’s also crucial to establish the goals and key performance indicators (KPIs) that will be used to assess the results.

Step 2: Establish Baseline Performance Metrics:  Gather historical data on the production line to establish baseline performance metrics. This data will serve as a benchmark for evaluating the results of the RAR. Key metrics may include cycle times, production rates, throughput, and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE).

Step 3: Prepare for the Run at Rate: To ensure a successful RAR, proper preparation is crucial. This includes:

  • Ensuring that all equipment and machinery are in optimal working condition
  • Confirming that all required raw materials, tools, and resources are readily available
  • Ensuring that all operators and personnel are trained and familiar with the processes
  • Establishing a detailed schedule for the RAR, including the duration and shift patterns

Step 4: Conduct the Run at Rate: During the RAR, the production line should be operated at its maximum intended capacity for the specified period. It’s essential to monitor the process closely and collect data on the following:

  • Production output
  • Cycle times
  • Machine downtimes and reasons
  • Quality parameters, such as the number of defects and rework

Step 5: Analyze the Results:  After the RAR is completed, analyze the collected data and compare it with the baseline performance metrics. Key areas to focus on include:

  • Identifying bottlenecks and areas for improvement
  • Assessing the effectiveness of operators and personnel
  • Comparing actual production rates and OEE with the baseline metrics and objectives
  • Evaluating the quality parameters and determining if quality targets were met

Step 6: Implement Improvement Actions: Based on the analysis, develop an action plan to address the identified areas for improvement. This may involve changes in processes, equipment, training, or resources. It’s crucial to monitor the progress and effectiveness of these improvement actions over time to ensure they yield the desired results.

Step 7: Repeat the Run at Rate:  Once the improvement actions have been implemented and sufficient time has passed for them to take effect, it’s advisable to repeat the RAR process. This will help to verify that the changes have led to the desired improvements in efficiency, productivity, and quality.

Benefits of RAR in Manufacturing

Run at Rate offers several benefits. Testing the production line at full capacity helps identify potential issues and areas for improvement. Here are some ways it can help reduce the cost of poor quality:

Identifying bottlenecks: By operating at maximum capacity, manufacturers can pinpoint areas in the production line where slowdowns occur. By addressing these bottlenecks, production can be streamlined, leading to higher efficiency and lower costs.

Ensuring equipment efficiency: Running at full capacity can highlight issues with equipment performance, allowing manufacturers to address problems before they lead to more significant costs, such as wasted materials, scrapped products, or expensive repairs.

Improved product quality: When a production line is tested at its maximum capacity, any flaws in the manufacturing process that might lead to poor-quality products can be detected and corrected. This helps to reduce waste, returns, and the need for rework, ultimately lowering the cost of poor quality.

Enhanced workforce performance: RAR exercises can reveal areas where employee training or additional resources are needed to optimize production efficiency. Addressing these needs can contribute to a more skilled workforce and a smoother manufacturing process.

Better planning and scheduling: When manufacturers understand the true capacity of their production lines, they can more accurately plan and schedule production runs. This ensures that resources are utilized effectively, reducing the risk of unexpected downtime and the costs associated with it.

Run at Rate Capacity Verification Solution and Reporting

As a quality assurance firm with nearly 40 years of experience, Pro QC provides Run at Rate capacity verification to help improve production processes and reduce costs associated with poor quality. The service involves an on-site auditor who analyzes the production process and provides a comprehensive report.

The report includes information about the supplier’s production capacity and efficiency. It includes details like the number of working hours, shifts, and days per week, which are used to calculate the total number of hours available for production per year. The report also looks at the production rate, scrap rate, and line efficiency to determine how well the production process is working.

Based on the information in the report, the auditor identifies any issues that may be impacting production efficiency and suggests solutions. We also conduct a trial run to test the production process and ensure that it is working optimally.

The report provides valuable insights into the manufacturing processes and identifies areas that can be improved. By implementing corrective actions based on the report’s recommendations, clients can increase their production capacity and reduce their scrap rate, ultimately reducing costs associated with poor quality. The report also serves as a benchmark for future production runs, allowing clients to track their progress and measure the impact of any improvements.

Please feel free to contact us at to request a free sample report of our Run at Rate capacity verification service or to discuss your project and requirements with us.

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