Global Wood Group

January 25, 2013   Case Studies

Industry: Wood & Furniture

Company Profile

The Global Group was founded in 1966 with the basic objective of manufacturing well-made office furniture at affordable prices.  They continue their tradition today, selling products around the world, and ranking as one of the top five furniture manufactures in the world.  Through a network of vertically integrated suppliers, manufacturers, marketers and distributors, the company applies this culture of efficiency throughout its 20+ manufacturing plants.  They collect real-time data and interpret the information to apply lean, continuous, improvement techniques to its operations.


After measuring their actual events, Global Wood looked carefully at many automated data collection products before they realized that their main interest was tracking the utilization metric of OEE.  They needed a company that would assist in the installation of the equipment as well as the interpretation of the data in order to make continuous improvement changes to their manufacturing process.  It was hard to find a company that could meet all of their requirements.


The Memex MERLIN-OEE software was installed in one machine at one of the Global Wood’s main plants as a pilot project, and within a few weeks they were able to see an improvement and a 25% increase in efficiency.  The data collected from this one machine also established that there was much more room for further improvement.  The initial pilot was so successful that Global Wood decided to roll out the Memex MERLIN-OEE solution throughout all of the machines in the plant, and after only 2 months, they saw a 25% – 50% increase of Overall Equipment Efficiency.  The Memex MERLIN-OEE solution is now implemented throughout the entire Global Wood enterprise.


  • More volume produced on a daily basis
  • Revenue is higher and costs are down
  • Eliminating the need for overtime
  • Increase in operational equipment efficiency near 50% on the most vital machine
  • Overall plant wide increase in efficiency of over 25%
  • Timely movement of inventory through the plant
  • Faster and more efficient DNC program loading through the shop floor network

**An interesting note is that the main skeptic of the OEE project, the Engineering Manager, thought things throughout the plant were already optimized and there was likely no room for improvement.  Once he saw how well things were running, and the 25% improvement in efficiency, he is now a huge supporter of the Memex MERLIN-OEE system.**