Electronics Assembly Knowledge, Vision & Wisdom
Database Driven Multi Media Work Instructions
Database Driven Multi Media Work Instructions
Work instructions are time consuming to generate for engineers, often requiring regeneration from scratch to address very minor changes.
Supply Chain

Authored By:
Tommy Fox
Optimal Electronics Corporation
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Summary
Work instructions are time consuming to generate for engineers, often requiring regeneration from scratch to address very minor changes. They need to be produced in varying levels of detail, with varying guidelines, for multiple stations, operators and lines. Minor component, station or process changes - down to the modification of an individual BOM component - can cause headaches when attempting to maintain consistency across multiple work instructions that are touched by the change.

The solution presented here improves efficiency and saves engineering time by making use of a database driven approach. Manufacturing details, component information, process guidelines, annotations, machine-specific data, and more can be stored in one central database. Any information stored in this single repository can then be modified quickly in one location and automatically propagate seamlessly throughout multiple work instructions. These can be instantly printed out or displayed on screens at appropriately affected stations with the simple click of a button, as opposed to regenerating from scratch, or going in and reviewing many documents to find and update with the change.

An object-oriented based approach with information stored in one central location encapsulates all of the appropriate information at the level it should be presented. This allows clearer work instructions to be provided almost instantly - the moment any change is made to the database - while also maintaining consistency across all instances of the change in question.
Conclusions
Electronic documentation, beyond simple and static PDF documents, being adopted leads to a myriad of benefits. There is no limit to the number of files or supplementary data and information that can be included in work instructions provided in this manner allowing for more accurate instruction and reproduction of the necessary steps at each station.

Added benefits to this style of documentation include cost avoidance, risk reduction and risk mitigation through the consistency afforded. Direct scrap reduction can be measured as a result of having database driven multi-media work instructions implemented throughout a factory floor. ISO standards for process tracking, ensuring assembly consistency, process, and inspection (e.g. ISO-13485 for medical equipment) are helped tremendously using dynamic data base driven multi-media work instructions.
Initially Published in the IPC Proceedings
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