Deploying Industrial Analytics from Scratch (by Kudzai Manditereza)

Industrial Analytics has the potential to transform how organizations identify and eliminate operational problems that often arise in manufacturing plant-floors. Problems such as lack of visibility, unplanned downtime, low quality, and management of changeovers. Moreover, industrial analytics can help detect opportunities and/or issues that may have gone unnoticed. Examples include the detection of anomalous conditions in equipment and process data.  If operating your factory with the highest possible efficiency is what you yearn for, then there couldn't have been a better time than now for you to start on the path of understanding how Industrial Analytics work, and how they can help you transform the way you run operations.  In a nutshell, Industrial Analytics is a solution that helps you identify wastage in your factory. Wastage in the form of production defects, over-production, unplanned downtime, non-utilization of equipment, extra processing, inventory, transportation, and so forth. And once you've identified wastage, an analytics solution gives you the power to take action in order to reduce or eliminate that wastage. This article is meant to give you a guide on how you can go about deploying an analytics solution for your manufacturing plant. Let's first take a look at how…

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My Packaging Plant Already Collects Data. And Now What? Which Questions Should Be Answered?

By Fernando Pacheco, COO at PackIOT The situation described in the title is more common than one can imagine. And if you have come this far, it is likely that you have been facing this challenge in your factory. This problem can occur in several ways (they are not mutually excluding): Your machines are already factory-sensed and deliver general data, but you don't know what to do with it. Your data is stored in the PLC, but nobody could access it in an easy way and/or does not gets insights and information from there (you don't have a front-end tool, in the end). Your plant spends a giant amount of time manually collecting data, but it does not make any decisions. you already have a powerful MES in place, which helps you on a piece of the data journey, but you can't cross these numbers with real production information (actionable data). And after that, of course, these challenges can lead to other difficult situations, usually described by plant managers as below: "I wanted to automate everything. I have the data in different places, but every time we need to put it together, a person needs to sit down,…

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The 4 Advantages of Adopting SaaS vs On Premises for the Packaging Industry

By Mario Ishikawa, CTO at PackIOT The IoT revolution is here and we cannot deny it. What is incredible for manufacturing is that with the IoT adoption on the shop floor, we saw the convergence of OT - Operational Technology with IT - Information Technology, creating the Industrial Internet of Things, or IIoT. It does not mean killing what is already out there, but bringing more connectivity and use cases for so much data that can be collected on a plant. But certainly, there is an overlap. If in the past the stack PLC + SCADA or dedicated gateway was basically the only option to collect data from the process, now there are many more possibilities. And when we are not talking about critical missions, it is certainly viable to think in a system on the cloud. One thing is when you need your operator to keep the process in control using an HMI. Another thing is when you want your manager to study past data to make better maintenance decisions for a packaging line. For that case, a cloud solution, presented as a SaaS (software as a service) offering can have several advantages: 1_Converting CapEx to…

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Women In Manufacturing: Changing The Industry’s Mindset

The jobs in manufacturing are mainly held by men: according to a study by Pew Research Center, in the US women make 40% of the labour force and only 29% work in an industrial field. There are thousands of job places that cannot be filled and it's difficult for manufacturers to hire people for those spots. Women could play an important role in that. This gap needs to be filled, and could actually be filled by females. So how can we convince women to opt for a job position in manufacturing? There is a big number of qualified women in the workforce, so we have to understand careers in the industrial sector, are not that appealing for them. According to a study by Deloitte, women who work in manufacturing feel underrepresented. It is certain that if manufacturers want to have more women working for them, they will certainly need to change their strategy related to recruiting, retaining, and advancing women’s jobs in manufacturing. Nowadays, 6 out of 10 positions are not filled due to a manufacturing skill gap.       WHAT DOES NEED TO CHANGE? 1_DIVERSITY Diversity and profitability are directly correlated. Having teams with a…

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How To Get A High Engagement Level From Operators On A Production Line
Photo by Remy Gieling on Unsplash

How To Get A High Engagement Level From Operators On A Production Line

*By Fernando Pacheco - COO at PackIOT First of all, I would like to make something clear: I don't wish this article to be another one of those "guru" posts that you read on the internet (10 things to do to keep your operator engaged).To write this text, I tried to compile the years of experience of our team of production specialists (at PackIOT), combined with my background as a manager and researcher. I really hope this can turn into something useful for you and your team. For whom this content is intended: line supervisors, shift coordinators, plant managers, industrial directors, business managers, operators, and future leaders. In a recent survey, TTI Global has released some choking data on engagement and satisfaction in the manufacturing sector. "According to these new insights - which canvassed employees across 11 industry sectors between December 2018 and 31st May 2019 - Manufacturing employees provided the lowest employee satisfaction score (7.4/10) overall".  Based on the data they have collected, they analyzed what Manufacturing employees expect, as well as what they value the most. The highest of these continues to be ‘Understanding what is required from you’ (39%), followed by ‘Support from your line manager’ (30%).…

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15 Essential KPIs And Metrics For Packaging Manufacturers

Every day, plant managers and executives are constantly receiving tons of information about the production of their factories, making it difficult to analyze everything and decide which metrics are the ones that make more sense to be used in their business. Manufacturing metrics and KPIs help you, monitor, analyze, and consequently, optimize your production processes, contributing to an improvement of the quality and quantity of the produced goods. They provide valuable insights that will help you meet your goals. To know which ones are the most useful for your enterprise, take a look at the fifteen metrics we selected. This blog post is part of an Online Free Guide, with more details about all those KPIs. Download now for free.  01. Throughput This metric is the rate of how many units are produced on average, by a machine, cell or line over a certain period. 02. Manufacturing Cycle Time Also known as throughput time, this metric consists of the length of time from the start of the production to the delivery of the final product. 03. Machine Setup Time (Changeover) Time spent on setting up a machine or a production line, with the specifications of the new…

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5 reasons why your packaging manufacturing factory should not have manual data inputs

Manual data entry is one of the biggest headaches in companies from different sectors. Manually processed tasks are more susceptible to human errors, which interfere directly with the performance of results. That is because inaccurate information hinders leaders in decision-making and can lead to catastrophic actions. In addition to these first points mentioned above, other numerous problems arise when manufacturing companies still use the manual method to collect, input, or store data. That's why our team of experts has created this guide with five reasons why you should not have manual data entry in your plant.  1. Manual data entry can drive to human errors As you might imagine, problem number one is related to human error. A natural feature of human beings is that we are never fully focused. For many reasons, we can be distracted when performing a task, commiting errors that can only be identified later when they have already hindered the progress of activities. And there are several factors that interfere with the probability of "human error" occurring. Either due to the complexity of a job, extensive working hours, excessive pressure from managers, among other reasons that lead the employee to be tired…

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How to use Excel to run a production dashboard at your factory?

How do I craft a production dashboard in my plant using Microsoft Excel? Let's start from the very beginning. In another article, we told you about the pitfalls of managing your entire factory using excel. It happens that many companies want to start their digital transformation and need to start internally, with a pilot project, and then hire an appropriate tool. Our Chief Data Officer, Eduardo Weingartner, has shot a video on the subject. On it, you will see how to use your machine data to create a production analysis dashboard. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKwnFykf_AE&feature=youtu.be To complement this, Eduardo mentions some tools that can be integrated into the dashboard in Excel. When to subscribe to a production analytics software? First of all, nice question! Excel has very sensitive limitations (like Human error/data reliability, Data availability/information flow, Dashboards, and views / Important data can be hidden) and at some point, you will no longer be able to get relevant insights. This will impair your decision making for operational efficiency and cost reduction. Three of the main times to look for a professional solution are when you need more automation, powerful reports, and data reliability. This is the stage where professional software…

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What is the main relation between productivity and data management

Post Written by InfraSpeak Team.  We live in the age of Industry 4.0, the world of Big Data and Internet of Things. This means that generated and well-managed data are at the "pinnacle" of importance for companies and their workers. Its purpose lies in optimal performance and an increase in productivity. Let’s dive into the reasons that justify these theories. Why data matters? Firstly, for data to really matters, you’ll need to generate from the right source. It's pretty simple: if you gather data to be analyzed on a specific situation that is not applicable, the results won’t be adequate. So, for a boost in productivity, you need to capitalize on generating suitable data. The next step to upgrade your performance will be focusing on managing your data. Gathering all the data in the world won’t help you unless you manage it accordingly. Analyzing big data is just a super-enhanced way of traditional data study, which processes information coming from a huge number of sources thanks to the connectivity allowed by IoT. This IoT technology grants higher efficiency and quick processing. In enterprises, lack of information or data can lead to poor performance, non-motivated employees and mediocre…

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The biggest problems in running your factory with Excel

We don't need to explain that much right? If you are here, you might know a lot about this important tool. While you are reading this text, millions of people are using Excel right now.  Microsoft Excel is a spreadsheet developed by Microsoft for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. It features calculation, graphing tools, pivot tables, and a macro programming language called Visual Basic for Applications. It has been a very widely applied spreadsheet for these platforms, especially since version 5 in 1993, and it has replaced Lotus 1-2-3 as the industry standard for spreadsheets. Excel forms part of the Microsoft Office suite of software. Among its important use cases, one of them is to help factory managers to collect and manage data on a daily basis. It's been an important tool for the past decades, but some issues can be perceived as companies have new demands on their management environment. On this matter, we bring to you the biggest problems running your factory with Excel. Human error/data reliability First of all, this is the most common issue in Excel. In the reliable part of the information in spreadsheets you can divide it into two parts: Problems…

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