A brief history of Watch&Time

How it started and where it is going

Watch&Time app started in 2017 after one of my junior industrial engineers had to complete a time and motion study in a service company.  The engineer took a clipboard and paper and went off on a two week analysis. My team at that time had a coffee chat on why haven’t industrial engineers optimised one of the key techniques used for decades.  From Gilbreth to Taylor , not much has changed to the basic technique, even though it is still the best method to get an understanding standard times of activities.  After the discussion, I decided to build a basic time study app for the team.  It was never used, but a large consulting company needed exactly the same tool, so we tested the viability of the app on the project.

So, I set off the build an app with a set of comprehensive features to optimise time and motion studies.  It started off as an iPhone app with the classic time study, activity sampling and also a quick count feature to determine throughput.   But there was still something missing.   Why waste an engineer’s time standing on a workfloor, call centre etc. Why not optimise the way we do time and motion studies?  Watch&Time (and many other similar apps) only removed the need for the clipboard and pen, therefore only making a physical process, digital.  And the biggest benefit is no need to recapture the data.   So, what came next?

Video analysis.  What if you can do time and motion studies on videos. Watch&Time was released with the feature to complete time and motion studies on videos.  Either record the video with your iPhone or iPad, or import a video.   The biggest gains are two fold:  1) the engineer does not have to be present on the floor, therefore allowing them to work on other tasks and 2) accelerated analysis.   The latter makes it possible to complete an activity sampling (Random or interval) of an 8 (eight) hour video in 5 minutes, taking 120 samples.  Timestudy can be done at 2x, 4x or even 8x, bringing down the analysis time for an 8 (eight) hour video to just over an hour.  Quality of the data is also improved as the analyst can go back and not miss a task / activity.  And the best part, you can do it on your iPhone and iPad…..and Mac.

Even though the original focus of Watch&Time was to bring time and motion studies to mobile devices, video analysis created a new requirement for users to be able to complete the video from their laptops.   So, from ver 1.4, Watch&Time became available on the Mac via die Mac App Store, with all the same features available on the mobile devices.

Watch&Time is currently on ver 1.5 and the team is busy working hard on developing new features to even further optimise the way we do time and motion studies.  Do you want to join the Beta Program?  Email social@watchtimeapp.com to join.

Feedback and input is always welcome.

C

 

 

 

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