• Automated Documentation
  • Activity Streamlining
  • Training & Collaboration
  • Continuous Review
  • Standard Icons
  • Observation Notes
  • AI Driven Summaries, Suggestions & Projects
  • *Available 3rd party Integrations

AI Automation Designed for You!

Praxie’s AI-powered SMED software transforms complex process steps into actionable data insights and significantly boosts productivity of your unique workflows.
AI-Powered Enhanced Visibility and Waste Reduction
Improved Efficiency, Productivity and Decision Making
Customer Focus, Cost Reduction and Process Improvement

“Our team used to take days manually creating status reports. Today, Praxie’s Connected Worker AI automatically creates business summaries, reports and action plans for every layer of management, it’s amazing!.” – Satisfied Customer

Speed Up Setups

Significantly reduce die changeover time

Simplify SMED

Streamline process management with real-time tools

Enhance Efficiency

Boost productivity with faster setup changes

Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) Overview

The Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) process is a vital methodology in manufacturing, aimed at reducing equipment setup and changeover times to under ten minutes. Predominantly utilized by manufacturing companies operating with die-casting, stamping, or molding machines, SMED’s primary objective is to minimize machine downtime and maximize productivity. This process typically involves analyzing current setup procedures, categorizing activities into internal (done while the machine is stopped) and external (done while the machine is running), and then streamlining these activities for efficiency. The value of SMED lies in its ability to significantly shorten changeover time, leading to increased machine utilization, reduced production costs, and greater flexibility in manufacturing operations. By adopting SMED, manufacturers can respond more swiftly to customer demands and improve overall operational efficiency.

Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) Details

The Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) process is a systematic approach used in manufacturing to drastically reduce the time it takes to switch from producing one product on a machine to another. This methodology is vital in enhancing productivity and flexibility in manufacturing environments. SMED is especially crucial in operations where multiple products are produced using the same equipment. The process involves a series of structured steps aimed at converting as many changeover steps as possible to “external” (performed while the machine is running) and simplifying and streamlining the remaining “internal” (performed when the machine is stopped) steps.

  1. Observe and Document Current Process: Thoroughly record the existing setup process to identify every step involved in the changeover.
  2. Separate Internal and External Activities: Distinguish between activities that can be done while the machine is running (external) and those that require the machine to be stopped (internal).
  3. Convert Internal to External: Modify the process to shift as many internal activities to external as possible.
  4. Streamline Remaining Internal Activities: Simplify and optimize the steps that must be done while the machine is stopped to make them as quick and efficient as possible.
  5. Standardize the New Procedure: Develop standard operating procedures for the new, streamlined process.
  6. Train Staff on New Procedure: Ensure that all operators are trained in the new changeover procedure.
  7. Regularly Review and Optimize: Continuously monitor the process and seek ways to further reduce changeover time.

The SMED process is a transformative tool for manufacturing operations, enabling a dramatic reduction in changeover times and significantly enhancing production efficiency. By methodically analyzing, categorizing, and refining changeover activities, SMED helps minimize downtime and maximize machine utilization. This, in turn, leads to increased flexibility, reduced lead times, and a more responsive manufacturing system. The ongoing benefits of adopting SMED include not only increased productivity and efficiency but also a competitive advantage in the manufacturing marketplace.

Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) Process

Introducing the Single Minute Exchange of Die (SMED) process into a manufacturing organization is a strategic initiative that can significantly enhance production efficiency. As a project manager, the key to success lies in meticulous planning, effective communication, and thorough training. The process involves a series of steps that, when carefully executed, can lead to a substantial reduction in machine setup times, thereby increasing productivity and operational flexibility.

  1. Conduct Initial Assessment: Analyze current setup processes and identify areas for improvement. Success depends on accurately understanding existing procedures and their inefficiencies.
  2. Develop a Project Plan: Create a detailed plan outlining objectives, timelines, resources, and responsibilities. Clear goals and a realistic timeline are crucial.
  3. Assemble a Cross-functional Team: Form a team comprising members from different departments such as operations, maintenance, and quality control. Diverse perspectives and skills enhance problem-solving effectiveness.
  4. Provide Training on SMED Principles: Educate the team about SMED concepts and techniques. Comprehensive understanding is vital for effective implementation.
  5. Observe and Document Current Setups: Record and analyze the existing setup process in detail. Accurate documentation is key to identifying non-value-added activities.
  6. Develop and Test SMED Strategies: Brainstorm and implement strategies to convert internal setup activities to external ones and streamline the remaining internal activities. Pilot testing these strategies helps in fine-tuning them.
  7. Standardize and Implement Changes: Establish standard operating procedures for the new setup processes. Consistency in processes ensures sustainable improvements.
  8. Monitor Performance and Make Adjustments: Continuously track the performance of the new setup process and make necessary adjustments. Ongoing evaluation and flexibility are essential for continuous improvement.
  9. Document and Communicate Results: Record the outcomes and share success stories across the organization. This boosts morale and encourages organization-wide adoption.

The successful introduction of the SMED process in a manufacturing organization involves a well-orchestrated series of steps, from initial assessment and planning to implementation and continuous improvement. Each step requires careful consideration, involving accurate assessment, effective team collaboration, comprehensive training, practical testing, standardization, and ongoing monitoring. The project manager plays a pivotal role in ensuring these steps are executed effectively, leading to reduced setup times, increased production efficiency, and overall operational excellence. Success in this endeavor hinges on thorough planning, team involvement, continuous learning, and adaptability.

Our Customers Achieve Great Results

We’re much more than software. Get personalized consulting, guidance, and coaching from experts with decades of experience.

Let’s discuss your manufacturing operations transformation

Your Manufacturing Operations Practice Lead

Michael Lynch

Michael Lynch is a creative and successful executive with extensive leadership experience in delivering innovative collaboration products and building global businesses. Prior to founding Praxie, Michael led the Internet of Things business at SAP. He joined SAP as part of the acquisition of Right Hemisphere Inc., where he held the position of CEO. During his tenure, he transformed a small tools provider for graphics professionals to the global leader in Visualization software for Global 1,000 manufacturers and led the company to a successful acquisition by SAP.