Andrew Waycott, COO & Co-Founder at TwinThread
The new narrative in this modern-day of manufacturing is how to accomplish desired outcomes faster and more efficiently. Like anything else in this world, the industrial and technological sector has gone through an evolution of continuous augmentation and collective control over tasks at hand. However, until now, operators and manufacturers have had to be present at their workspaces to perform their jobs.
Fortunately, it was only a matter of time before the need to actually be right in front of an asset to understand its performance was no longer necessary. With the advent of the Predictive Operations Platform, remote manufacturing is now not only a reality, but a categorical imperative from a standpoint of optimization. This predictive platform is what now shapes industrial operations and brings, with it, a revolutionary change to today’s modern-day mindset - implementing a remote approach to insight cultivation to drive greater efficiency and scale in-house knowledge.
With this resource, we will discuss 4 ways in which remote manufacturing is positively impacting today’s operational ecosystems and how these changes can maximize potential. The points found throughout this resource radically shift how operations are executed and empower organizations to have greater reach (cross- operationally) and therefore, greater control.
Allocation of Subject-Matter Experts
Why accept being forced to physically go somewhere to inspect operations when you can “see” critical processes right from your desk? This is the question you should be asking when allocating your subject-matter experts in the field. There’s no reason to have your domain experts bouncing here, there and everywhere to gain an understanding of how things are performing. In reality, it’s a waste of your vital in-house know-how to request that they spend their valuable time moving from place to place.
What they need is a solution that frees them up to allocate their time efficiently, to the physical locations that really need their presence, while still being made capable of gaining a real-time understanding of your operations at an enterprise scale. Making sure the right information makes its way into the right hands at the right time shouldn’t depend upon that right set of hands’ physical location.
That’s why having a Predictive Operations Platform that enables remote access to actionable insights is so crucial. An easy-to-use predictive solution ensures that there are no barriers between your subject-matter experts and the key insights they need to make critical decisions that will have an impact on production processes, operational strategies, asset reliability and cost savings. So, whether you’re measuring performance regarding product quality, manufacturing throughput, or energy efficiency - regardless of where your domain experts are, the illuminating information related to whichever performance metric you’re looking to innovate on will not and cannot be blocked by any factor, whether internal (limited time of experts on-site) or external (travel restrictions preventing on-site presence).
Optimize your expert resources, just like you optimize your manufacturing operations. Allocate your subject-matter experts with exceptional accuracy and ensure the right information is getting to the right places when it matters most.
In Touch With Your Data, Wherever You Are
It’s trite but true - we live in a world where information is at our fingertips 24/7. So, why should your data be any different? There’s no good reason for someone needing to be somewhere specific to get in touch with any of your data (and the insights contained within). Frankly, the only way your subject-matter experts will be empowered to operationalize the treasure trove of insight you have within your data is to be as close to that information as they can be. And, the best method for them to remain intimate with the insights is to be made capable of accessing it whenever and wherever, at a moment’s notice.
This notion is really nothing new. Cell phones and email accounts ensure we can keep the ball moving forward in our business efforts, no matter what time of day. You should expect no less from your predictive solution. We make no hesitation in saying that having your crucial insights book-ended by hours of operation should be considered unacceptable. Remote access is here to stay, and as organizations become more sophisticated, there will be a drive to accomplish operational efforts from anywhere.
Not being right in front of the asset in question or on-site at the facility being reviewed shouldn’t cost your experts their situational awareness or understanding. This is why it’s so important to have a predictive solution that keeps your subject-matter experts right in the thick of your data.
Utilizing a comprehensive Predictive Operations Platform will empower your domain experts with in-line remote access to insights - allowing them to fully maximize the application of their subject-matter knowledge. This means there’s significantly less opportunity to overlook valuable insights - ensuring your organization uncovers and operationalizes the most process augmentations as is possible.
Scaling Your Know-How
Picture this as a use case for remote manufacturing: One of your pump experts is capable of monitoring your entire fleet of pumps globally and across your entire operation, instead of just interpreting data on a per-asset or per-location basis. Imagine what that could mean with regard to scaling that expert’s knowledge, paired with the insights they uncover.
Simply put, you want to be able to free your subject-matter experts up to accomplish as much as they possibly can. Having them duplicate their efforts by physically traveling to this site and that site, and this factory and that factory, and this asset and that asset will not allow them to maximize their time and scale their findings. However, if they could see the performance of all assets, from one place, they would be much more capable of quickly and easily identifying opportunities to scale the findings of top-performing assets and pieces of equipment.
With the connectivity an intuitive Predictive Operations Platform provides, your problem-solvers will be fed the information they need without having to be in the physical location where the data is originating. This means your key operational decision-makers will be freed from strategizing in the blind. Instead, it will be quick and clear where opportunities for improved efficiency reside.
Without real-time access to enterprise-wide performance data, your experts are siloed. With the ability to remotely determine top performing assets, the only question that remains is, what will you be optimizing at scale next?
Optimizing Efforts – Long-Term vs. Short-Term
With all great optimization efforts comes planning. There are long-term plans and short-term plans (priorities). Within a manufacturing environment, planning in the long-term involves predictive maintenance and proactive strategies. When you’re proactive, you’re identifying potential risks (issues) and proactively planning to either prevent or mitigate them. When responding to short-term priorities, it’s much less about formulating a plan and much more about simply reacting to a situation that demands immediate attention. In other words, short-term priorities are often situations that necessitate your problem-solvers reacting to an anomaly as it occurs.
All this to say, the quality of your long-term planning directly impacts your short-term priorities. For example, a strong predictive maintenance program will ensure you have greater control and understanding of your assets’ potential downtime (being more empowered to plan for uptime).
How well you can execute your long-term planning is reliant on how strong your monitoring capabilities are. If you want to keep a good eye on operations, you need the ability to do so whenever and wherever you are. So, you need the ability to access operational insights remotely. Having your domain experts equipped with a comprehensive Predictive Operations Platform means they can execute the most thorough preventive planning possible.
With an extremely focused and accurate predictive maintenance program, your organization’s asset reliability will improve, and asset life will be prolonged to its full potential. But not only that. As much as you’ll want to be proactive with your operation’s well-being by planning in the long-term, your problem-solvers’ ability to react to identified variability or dips in performance will be augmented and expedited by remote access to insights as well.
Any great operation has to execute now and plan for execution later. With the window into operations that a remote monitoring predictive solution provides, knowing where you stand now and understanding what that might mean for the future is all right there for your people to see - no matter where they may find themselves.
This resource has been an exploration of how remote manufacturing can be used to support your experts in getting closer to the insights that will drive actionable improvements to your operations.
A remote-capable predictive solution will allow your in-house know-how to stay intimate with the data they are looking to locate; empowering them to quickly act on what they learn in a matter of days, from wherever they are.
If you’d like to learn more about what a comprehensive Predictive Operations Platform looks like and how easy it should be to access your wealth of data insights from anywhere, get started here.