Production traceability: what it is and why you should care. 

Production traceability, in discrete manufacturing, is the ability to track everything that happens to your product in manufacturing as it goes from raw materials & components to final product before it leaves the factory. 

This means tracking every part, action, and processing your product experiences. 

It’s a vital insurance policy for products that might be subject to a recall. Being able to find what products might be faulty from a batch could save millions of dollars and lives depending on the product. In some industries traceability is even a legal requirement.  The benefits of traceability extend beyond the case of recalls. With traceability you can: 

  • Use data as part of your continuous improvement process to eliminate waste 

  • Facilitate root-cause analyses to improve product quality 

  • Accelerate communication between the various parts of your manufacturing business to improve customer satisfaction 

  • Give real time updates on production to improve supply chain visibility 

  • Track your carbon footprint in production (a vital part of Scope-3 reporting)  

  • Become more sustainable by improving the repairability & recyclability of your products 

Traditional digital traceability systems are a huge time sink to acquire, requiring your teams to shut down production, bring in an army of consultants, and call consultants back in every time you need to make a change in your production. You end up with a rigid production framework to try to scale.  You could work with sticky notes and spreadsheets to track your production process, but you lose out on a huge degree of control and scalability that comes with the digital systems. Trying to make any change to your production process when you have to manually update all your physical systems becomes a nightmare for your production teams.  

At MTEK, we thought, what if we could make Traceability easy?  

With MBrain we bring together the best of the digital and physical systems on the market. You get real-time traceability without sacrificing on the flexibility, speed, or production control so you can stay close with your customers’ needs without sacrificing on quality.   

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