LENOX benchmark survey highlights opportunities for metal cutting companies to improve efficiency

June 9, 2014

A new U.S. benchmark survey from LENOX®, a manufacturer of premium band saw blades, power tool accessories, and hand tools in East Longmeadow, Mass., reveals unexpected trends in industrial metal cutting.

The LENOX Institute of Technology (LIT) surveyed more than 100 high-production metal cutting organizations in the first benchmark survey of its kind to identify key opportunities for industrial metal cutting organizations to improve their operational efficiency to contribute to both revenue and profit growth.

"In the industrial metal cutting arena, there is a perception that improved technology is the only way to increase productivity," said Adam Cincotta, senior product manager. "The findings of this survey reveal that technology is just one component of the total picture. Most notably, we found that investment in human capital, something that facility managers too often are not doing enough of, is a major contributor to operational efficiency on the shop floor."

Sixty-seven percent of industrial metal cutting organizations that schedule planned maintenance on their machines report that their job completion rate is trending upward year-over-year. This statistic reveals that preventive maintenance is key in staving off unplanned downtime.

Seventy percent of industrial metal cutting organizations that report their scrap and rework costs are less than 5 percent also say they “always” break in their band saw blades. These high performers are able to reduce “soft” failure — a type of blade failure that frequently occurs when blades are not broken in properly — which leads to materials waste.

Fifty-one percent of industrial metal cutting organizations that reported reduced levels of operator turnover also said their revenue per operator had increased year-over-year. Sixty-four percent of organizations cite a correlation between decreased operator turnover and increased job completion rates. Organizations that invest in training and employee retention are able to achieve levels of operational efficiency that many organizations overlook by investing solely in technology.

The full results of the “Benchmark Survey of Industrial Metal Cutting Organizations” can be downloaded from the survey’s home page.

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