Regardless where they're located, manufacturing plants and factories across North America share something in common: manufacturing headaches.
The labor shortage is a big one. Finding great people and retaining those same great people is becoming more of a challenge. Productivity is increasing and people are not staying with companies for many years, as the job market has become very competitive. Effectively managing the day to day operations becomes more of a challenge. Ops managers are throwing money at training resources to only have an employee move out of the organization.
You might say, your company is different as there are employees who have been around for a very long time. That is fantastic! However, these employees do retire; hiring and retaining great people will still be a constant focus and an ongoing challenge.
Technology is helping manufacturing companies address the reality of labor shortages and skills gaps. Many manufacturing companies remain hesitant to explore new technology, keeping it "old school" rather than investigating how investment in manufacturing software solutions can drastically improve performance, save time and resources, and increase productivity while reducing dependence on skilled labor.
Here are some questions to ask yourself, especially if you are in the machining industry.
Are you still collecting data manually?
How many operator hours (per week? per year?) are spent collecting all this data?
Manual machine data is costing manufacturers a ton of money. In many cases, manual data is required to some extent but a large reliance on this is a huge red flag as time and money could be spent in many other places. Manually collecting data, manual entry into excel spreadsheets, and trying to create an action plan that does not consistently deliver the required results is wasting time and money. Your manually collected data is probably filled with transcription errors or oversights, sitting in spreadsheets, placed in one of the thousands of binders throughout the facility with no one having true visibility of what is occurring. You can't fix the problems or improve the outcomes because you don't have any idea what is actually happening.
What if you could collect real-time data throughout your entire facility, or even all your facilities around the world, and see it all in one place? This is now a common practice for manufacturers to investigate and save substantial time and money.
What if you could generate your own reports and charts that help you immediately drill down into the metrics that will improve your facility's productivity? Many companies can provide you dashboards with real-time data, but PlantStar 4.0 has mastered this and SO MUCH more!
SYSCON PlantStar has been making a difference for people in manufacturing since 1976 so our expertise in this space is definitely one to consider. The use of real-time dashboards across all your facilities is becoming more common. Utilizing these dashboards and real-time data on a cell phone, iPad, or large display screens should be more of a common practice within the industry by now. Maybe this is a small start for a company that does not want to invest a ton of money but can immediately see a fantastic ROI. However, what PlantStar 4.0 also brings to the table is worth investigating at a higher level. Check out our Company History!
- Schedule all your jobs through PlantStar 4.0 drag and drop job scheduler.
- Schedule and be proactive with material planning and tool changes.
- Real time tracking of machine uptime, product quality, and shop floor personnel.
- Reduce scrap rates on all machines.
- Integrate with all your ERP/MRP solutions to increase efficiency of operators, technicians, managers, and executives.
- Allow your ERP system to do what it is great at, while adding PlantStar 4.0 to feed your ERP system with accurate, real time data.