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The value of a well-designed operator cockpit

When you want to deploy production management tools, it is useful from the beginning of the project to consider how the processed information will be communicated to operators and shared according to the interests of each. Structured information, communicated to the right person at the right time, is a guarantee of improved responsiveness and therefore performance. However, this Cockpit, the operator’s dashboard, must be well thought out by involving the employees in the field and by integrating multi-level, agile, motivating, and responsive management!

Typical situation

Even today, although there is an increased interest on the part of production managers in the deployment of computerized tools, we see an organization as we have known it for the last 30 years…

  • Printed papers
    o Production plan
  • Data entry forms
    o Often optimized to use the entire paper surface and less designed for ease of use.
    o A lot of copying of information.
    o Time-consuming analysis…
    o Do not always allow the operator to have a complete view.
  • Unclear ERP screens
    o Rarely scheduled for monitoring by operators
  • Displays around the workshops
    o Information from the day before, or even the week or month before!

Current trend

Nevertheless, as we mentioned above, the current trend is to open more and more the doors of the factory to industrial IT, allowing the deployment of tools that finally add value to existing data, increase efficiency and raise performance rates!

Digitalization : paperless factory

-Show the operator the useful information: integrated dashboard logic rather than different business applications that require the human to switch between them.

-Production monitoring in real time: up-to-date information that allows you to quickly capitalize on the information – the operator is more involved, more reactive to quickly noticed drifts!

Our recommendations for useful dashboards.

With our long experience in optimization projects for industries and having developed Cockpit 4.0, our software suite for industry, our recommendations for deploying useful dashboards are based on numerous feedbacks.

Thus, the dashboard gathering the various useful information to the operators is often composed as follows:

Production plan

-Production in progress and the projection of the end -> to be able to easily anticipate the changes, the interactions with the internal logistics, the quality…

-Counting of standard time for changes, cleanings… -> be aware of the respect of the standards.

-Production plan: sequence of production orders, changes, cleaning… with forecasted hours -> to have a vision on the course of the day to better organize the work.


-Stop in progress, request for justification -> do not wait until the end of the shift to justify a stop, do it as it happens – more precise information.

-Performance of the station, of the day -> become aware of the performance to adapt during production.

-Position loss summary – typically a Pareto chart -> get a clear picture of what is going on.


-Monitoring of the controls, trend of the measurements, deviations noted-> to have a vision of synthesis allowing the operator to act proactively.

-Pro-active request to carry out controls -> carry out the controls at the right time.


-Visual of the components to be used (photo of packaging, cartons…) -> avoid mistakes.

-State of supply at the foot of the line -> tighten internal logistics, avoid having too much stock at the foot of the lines, cumbersome and error-prone.


-Access to the updated documentary reference: operating procedures…

To be relevant, these dashboards must be real-time: always up-to-date information is the key to good reactivity.

It is critical to choose relevant information for a front page:

-Only what is essential

-Must remain light and easy to grasp

-avoid overloading = make choices

Good ergonomics practices are paramount:

  • -Exemple Double codage : texte et la couleur correspondante
  • -Triple coding: gauge, color and value -> allows a first reading at a glance (the color gauge) and then a second reading with a glance.

Finally, we rely on the eye of a graphic designer to validate the layout, for a good readability:

  • -Spaced text to guide the eye
  • -S’assurer du bon contraste entre couleurs
  • -Consistent graphic charter: font, limited and harmonious color palette…


In conclusion, from the start of an industrial digitalization project, we will make sure to integrate the reflection on the useful information to communicate and the means to use.

A well thought-out dashboard requires a lot of thought. The added value of a technical partner with the know-how and experience in the field makes sense. He will make sure to have real time information and will propose to use a software natively designed for the distribution and display of real time information. Moreover, depending on the field situation, the means of communication will be adapted. [Read our article Means to suit every situation]

As you can see, implementing dashboards with a solution like Cockpit 4.0. is profitable in more ways than one!

  • -More conscientious operator,
  • -Improved information
  • -Faster reaction time
  • -Performance gain
  • -Stronger quality control

Learn more about Cockpit 4.0. our MES software “Manufacturing Execution System »