Answered March 05 2020
In the briefest of definitions, takt time is the German word for a precise interval of time, such as a musical note, beat, or meter. In the world of manufacturing, it’s something rather different–and important.
The manufacturing world is ruled by numbers, metrics, statistics, production times, and a whole host of other numbers that determines the success or failure of any particular thing at any given particular time. Takt time simplifies whether supply can meet customers’ demand.
Here is a comprehensive guide to takt time, how it is measured and calculated, and why it is important to the modern-day plant, factory, and manufacturing.
In the modern-day, takt time is the available production time divided by customer demand. It was first used in the 1930s by the German production aircraft industry and was picked up in the 1950s by Toyota, who still uses it today.
Another way of thinking about takt time is by considering the natural rhythm of a well-ordered plant or facility that consistently produces a set amount of inventory per month or year. This rhythm is the basis of modern takt time and the calculations surrounding it.
However, it’s more than a measurement of time, production and progress. It’s also a different way of thinking about production that is centered around customer demand. Takt processes by their nature help deliver the right product in the right way at the right time. This is because takt time centers around the pulse of the machines in any given production plant. when does pulse is carefully watched, it highlights inefficiencies, capacity issues, synchronization struggles, and other such problems that are apt to slip under the radar.
Finally, takt time is a great way to simplify a company’s issues down to an easy formula that can be understood and acted on in a timely way. Here’s how you can use it.
Takt time is used to:
The vast majority of these observations flow out of the mathematical expression of takt time. This leads us to how takt time is generally measured and the best practices that surround it today.
Takt time is generally calculated using this formula:
Available time for production / required units of production
It’s important to note that the time available corporate action reflects the total number of all of the units of time that employees are working. It should not include breaks, meetings, mandatory training, or any other similar activities.
The number of required units of production is a measure of the current customer demand. Another way to think about it is how many products does a company expected customers to buy in a set period of time. that time should be consistent between both valuables in the above equation.
If a process or production line is not able to reach takt time, it’s time to investigate. Demand leveling, additional resources and/or re-engineering may be needed in order to fix this issue.
If it sounds like takt time is similar to cycle or lead time, you’re not wrong. Let’s take a look at these different metrics and what their differences are.
The best way to compare these three metrics is by looking at their definitions.
Takt time is the available production time divided by customer demand.
Cycle time is the amount of active time your team spends on fulfilling a customer order.
Lead time is the amount of time between a company receiving an order and the customer getting their value from the order.
All of these are important and valuable metrics for a manufacturing plant. However, they are measurements of different things and should not be confused. Perhaps the biggest difference between all of them is that takt time is an actual calculation, while the other metrics are simply measurements of total amount of time spent in a particular area.
Takt time is important in these areas:
The first benefit of takt time is that it improves workflows. The way your business runs generally suffers from problems that are sometimes easy to spot. Takt time brings those issues into high definition and allows companies to begin to work on them.
Takt time also works well in many metric-oriented strategies. It can be a great KPI or trackable metric, displaying an aspect of your production lines that you or other managers may not have considered. It can be a great asset if you are using the theory of constraints or Kaban strategies. Finally, it’s an important component of lean manufacturing and the strategies surrounding it.
What does all of this mean for companies and their bottom lines?
Takt time impacts companies insofar as it’s applied and used. It’s a great solution to slow or lagging production lines, studying your internal supply chains, and other such areas. However, it doesn’t offer much outside of these areas.
If these are areas in which you have questions, it may be time to test out this equation and study up on your workflows. Let’s take a look at how you can do that.
The best way to implement a proper use of takt time is by analyzing your available production time and your customer demand. When you have those numbers, you can figure out what your existing takt time is and how you can improve it.
Like many other metrics, it’s simple to understand and use in theory. In practice, each company is going to run up against different issues over time. In fact, takt time is one of the harder metrics to pin down.
It’s simply the nature of metric oriented strategies. Numbers don’t always work in real-time, no matter how good they look in a vacuum. However, this is not to discredit any of the values that metrics in general and takt time in particular offer any given company.
On the contrary, it’s important to understand it to see if it can be applied to your workflows in a positive and profitable way.
In modern manufacturers, the old ways are quickly disappearing. From computerized maintenance management systems to innovative networks, such as the Internet of Things, the plants of yesterday are quickly becoming the future of tomorrow.
Takt time is a metric that can help you move into that future. With its focus on optimizing inventory and streamlining workflows, it provides answers to some of manufacturing’s most pesky problems.
Even though it’s not the easiest of metrics to use, properly managed software such as enterprise management software can take this metric and use it to create more detailed reports to launch you and your company into a better space financially and logistically.
Latest Maintenance Articles
How to Create a PLC Maintenance Checklist
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About CMRP Certification
What Are the Risks and Benefits of Using a PLC?
Comprehensive Guide to Building a Maintenance Excellence Team (Part 1: Crawl)
What You Need to Know About ISO 41001 Certification and Compliance
Why Your Maintenance Team Should Be Trained as CMMS Superusers
Oil & Gas
A food safety program is critical for helping food manufacturers monitor and eliminate the activities that can cause contamination issues.
With the food and beverage industry becoming more data-driven, it’s important to know which KPIs and benchmarks are most worth tracking.
SQF documentation is insufficient without a systematic approach to achieving consistent, self-improving food safety behaviors in the plant.
The food manufacturing industry has many unique challenges that necessitate a solid reliability plan. Maintenance is necessary for food safety and more.
5S involves everyone in eliminating unneeded materials, putting everything in its proper place, and standardizing workplace practices.
The theory of constraints is a management strategy that identifies and resolves a barrier in the way of manufacturing teams.
An engineering change request (ECR) is a suggestion submitted to management to solve a problem or make an improvement to a product in manufacturing.
Some of the most effective methods include attending trade shows, performing online searches, and receiving recommendations from industry professionals.
The different types of pumping systems in hydraulics include gear, piston, vane, clutch, and dump pumps. They all differ in parts replacement.
An engineering change order is a document that begins the process for making adaptations or corrections during a product’s lifecycle.
You can jumpstart your career in Aerospace, Civil, Industrial, Biomedical, Reliability, and Maintenance Engineering through a strong education foundation.
7 types of plastic are made using natural materials and different catalysts, and although some can be biodegradable, others are not.
The top reliability engineering certifications are CMRP, certified reliability engineer, certified reliability leader, and asset reliability practitioner
Different types of mechanical testing include testing mechanical properties, tensile testing, impact of strength, hardness, and corrosion resistance.
Some of the most recent and exciting innovations in plastic manufacturing include recycling technology, polymer technology, and more.
Materials science is the study of the components and the creation of different materials. Chemistry is the predominant component of the field.
A few alternatives to plastic straws include glass, paper, bamboo, straw, metal, as well as going without a straw at all.
Industrial automation is used by a variety of companies and industries to create more efficient processes through the application of various technologies.
Order fulfillment can present numerous challenges to businesses, but the most common are inventory management and the precision of a business’s processes.
The consumer products goods (CPG) industry is changing quickly. For manufacturers, this means understanding and meeting customers as they evolve.
The most common types of packaging materials used commercially include plastic, glass, steel, aluminum, paper, and paperboard wood.
Start your own consumer packaging goods (CPG) business by having passion, understanding your customers, and monitoring business performance.
The industry forecast projects an average of 2.8% growth - 3.9% growth in 2019, the rate tapers to 2.4% in 2020 and 1.9% in 2021.
The NSC lists the following injuries, by nature of injury, to be most commonly experienced by workers in the manufacturing industry in the year 2017.
While Generation Z has shown more interest in manufacturing jobs than previous generations, millennials have shown little interest in manufacturing jobs.
Lights-out manufacturing is a manufacturing model that does not rely on human labor. Facilities with lights-out manufacturing are known as “dark factories.”
For manufacturers who are savvy or agile enough to switch to other sources, there will likely be little impact. Read more here!
The most common use cases for sensors and Internet of Things (IoT) technology in manufacturing are in asset and facility monitoring.