OEE: How to control the Six Big Losses?

Because of pandemic situation and the Russia-Ukraine war, Organizations have opportunities now to try new methodologies that will help them to be more efficient and successful in the long run. One thing among others you can do is to control your losses by implementing OEE tool.

What is OEE

The Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) of a machine or set of equipment is a Key Performance Indicator (KPI) that indicates the equipment’s overall operational performance. OEE is a measure of the actual output that was produced with a machine, compared with the maximum output that could be expected from the machine over the same period of time.

OEE takes into consideration the cumulative impact of three factors: the equipment’s availability, its performance rate, and the quality of its output. The three OEE factors map to Six Key Metrics, providing a concrete and manageable framework within which to categorize your losses. This makes it easier to see where your improvement efforts can have the greatest impact.

Fig.1: OEE and the Six Big Losses

One of the major goals of Total Productive Maintenance (TPM) and OEE programs is to reduce and/or eliminate what are called the Six Big Losses, the most common causes of equipment-based productivity loss in manufacturing.

Using the Six Big Losses

The six big losses in equipment or machines generally are thought to be (1):

  1. Breakdowns
  2. Setup/adjustments
  3. Idle/stops
  4. Reduced speed
  5. Scrap/Process Rejects
  6. Start-up yield

Using the Six Big Losses framework creates a concrete path to improve your OEE score (2):

  • Working to reduce Availability Loss in the form of Equipment Failures or Setups and Adjustments protects you against preventable unplanned stops or downtime, as well as minimizes any planned stops.
  • Addressing Performance Loss that results from Idling and Minor Stops, as well as Reduced Speed, prevents small stops and slow cycles from accumulating.
  • Finally, minimizing Quality Loss in the form of Process Defects and Reduced Yield reduces the number of unusable parts produced before and during steady-state production.

A world-class OEE value is 85% or higher. OEE measurement is also commonly used as a key performance indicator (KPI) in conjunction with lean manufacturing and Six Sigma efforts to provide an indicator of success.

What is your OEE value? Do you know your losses and the areas that need improvement? Mivado GlobalPerformance helps defining a Business Process Optimization Plan that meets your business plan and objectives.

To learn more about OEE, Join or Register OEE Online Live Training.


1- The OEE Primer: Understand Overall Equipment Effectiveness, Reliability, and Maintenability  by D.H. Stamatis, CRC Press, 2017

2- OEE, https://www.oee.com/oee-six-big-losses/ (accessed 2022-03-06)

About the authorKossi Molley, Chemist, LSSBB