Have you seen the term OTIF and wondered what it means?

In short, OTIF stands for On Time In Full.

OTIF meaning

Okay, so that was pretty straightforward.

So, why would people choose OTIF over something else?

The OTIF meaning has some key points:

  • The delivery was on time.
  • The delivery was in full.

Many businesses choose to measure their delivery performance based on other factors, such as:

  • Number of order lines completed on time.
  • Percentage of items shipped to the customer on time.

OTIF is harder on you than other measures

Whilst these give you a good idea of delivery performance, OTIF is a little stricter. I have seen businesses that have measured their DSA (Delivery Schedule Adherence) and scored in the 90%+ range. Their corresponding OTIF was somewhere in the 30% range.

In other words, they delivered a great deal of their orders to their customers on time, but slipped on enough items / orders to never fulfil what their customers asked for.

An alternative OTIF meaning could therefore be ‘measuring customer promises kept‘.

This might sound a little fluffy, but it is true. How do you feel when you take a days holiday to wait for a delivery and it doesn’t show?

I have seen businesses dismiss OTIF initially as the yardstick to use as they saw it as being too much work. The same companies then find out that the £100 item that has been missed from a delivery was critical for a £15,000,000 product’s completion. OTIF focuses attention and drives improvement when required.

Another OTIF meaning is tied to the slogan of this website “helping you to deliver on time without ‘blood, sweat and tears’!’.

An improvement driven definition

If you want a consistent, reliable OTIF performance then you need to focus on your systems and your processes. You can achieve high levels on time delivery through graft and hard work, but that approach is often unsustainable. Developing the systems, the routines and management approach to hit high levels of OTIF requires less energy in the longer term. Working towards higher OTIF, via systems and processes, is therefore an intelligent option.

So, perhaps the best OTIF meaning is this:

“Focusing your resources effectively, to develop your business systems and processes, to consistently deliver your customer promises on time, in full”

I realise that I have extended the official definition somewhat, but hopefully you will find this extended OTIF meaning useful to focus your improvement activities.

If you want a ready to go system to help you improve your business’ on time delivery performance then get your copy of The OTIF Improvement System today.

0,The OTIF Improvement System

Giles Johnston

Giles Johnston is a Chartered Engineer who consults with businesses to improve their on time delivery performance, ERP system performance and deploy Kaizen / Lean production methods. Giles is also the author of 'What Does Good Look Like?'.