In September 2014, Arno Koch, a globally acclaimed OEE and Lean coach from the Netherlands, graced South Africa with his profound knowledge, engaging local manufacturers and industry leaders.

Known for his motto “To Learn and Teach – To Search and Guide,” Koch’s visit was a beacon of inspiration for the manufacturing community.

At a function hosted by Haldan Consulting in Port Elizabeth, Koch delivered a compelling presentation outlining his framework for successful Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) implementation and broader manufacturing success.

The 6 pillars of Manufacturing Excellence are:

For those who missed it, the presentation is available on YouTube:

True North

Koch emphasized the importance of defining and adhering to a company’s “True North”—the uncompromising goals and principles that guide every action.

He encouraged attendees to establish and maintain this guiding principle in both their professional and personal lives.

Visualize Losses

Using an effective OEE tool, Koch stressed the necessity of visualizing production losses.

He views losses not as failures or an excuse to blame others, but as opportunities for improvement.

Eliminate Losses

Once losses are identified, Koch advocates for forming a multi-disciplined team, including operators and production floor members, to systematically eliminate these losses.

Their firsthand knowledge is invaluable in identifying and solving issues.


Furthermore, Koch highlighted the importance of maintaining a continuous flow in all processes, ensuring that every action moves in the direction of customer satisfaction.

Flow should be self-regulating and not forced, creating a seamless operation.


Standardizing successful processes ensures consistent results and operational stability.

New team members can seamlessly integrate into established standards, maintaining quality and efficiency.

Respect for People

Finally, Koch believes that respect for people is fundamental. Employees should feel empowered and recognized, creating harmonious relationships and a satisfying work environment.

Technology should aid workers, making their tasks easier and more rewarding.

Koch states:

“Technology is key, but respect for people is the most important element. The factory workers’ lives should be made easier with OEE – they must feel tired but satisfied at the end of a work day, instead of being frustrated by a process or machine.”

The event saw remarkable attendance, with nearly 100 representatives from various companies across South Africa, including industry giants like Aspen, Coega Business Development Corporation, and Federal Mogul.

Koch also conducted individual workshops with Lumotech, SJM-Flex, and Ramsay Engineering, offering tailored insights into their manufacturing and improvement strategies.

His insights provided a fresh look into their manufacturing and improvement strategies, as well as clarity into their vision and focus for the future. His invaluable knowledge stems from his experience within hundreds of manufacturing plants worldwide, from nearly every industry.

Arno Koch is revered as the “Father” of OEE, having established the philosophies and parameters of the OEE Industry Standard. As the founder of the OEE Foundation ( and OEE Coach, he dedicates himself to demystifying OEE, promoting it as a cornerstone for systematic process improvement, and sharing best practices. Koch’s contributions include several influential books on OEE, such as “OEE for Operators” and “OEE for the Production Team.”

He has over 30 years of global experience in virtually every facet of manufacturing, administration and healthcare.

Arno Koch’s visit to South Africa was more than an event; it was a pivotal moment for the local manufacturing industry, offering a fresh perspective and actionable strategies for achieving manufacturing excellence.

HaldanMES, endorsed by Koch, stands as the first OEE software worldwide with his approval. As a product of Haldan Consulting, it epitomizes Koch’s principles, ensuring comprehensive and effective OEE training and implementation.