Luis Morinigo, VP Business Development & Strategic Partnerships at TwinThread
In any industrial or process-dependent environment, driving innovative performance will almost certainly prompt scenarios where operational challenges arise. When your domain experts are pushing the envelope of what can be achieved within your operational ecosystem, your organization’s ability to problem- solve accurately and fast is absolutely integral to maintaining a competitive edge and realizing success.
One of the overarching challenges your subject-matter experts will inevitably run into, when attempting to raise the bar for what can be accomplished, is informational overload. Reality is, with most organizations, the issue isn’t too little data to draw from – it’s too much to evaluate in an effective way. Your problem-solvers get so overwhelmed with information that it can be tedious and difficult to identify what pieces of data matter most in finding the resolution you’re looking for.
Enter a comprehensive predictive analytics platform. No matter what facet of your operations you have targeted to optimize, there’s no better companion in accomplishing your goal than a predictive operations solution that keeps your domain experts front and center.
There are a multitude of pain points that can be vanquished with the implementation of predictive analytics. Within this resource, we will explore 6 specific challenges that are solved through the various applications of a predictive operations platform.
Millions Lost Through Waste
Every great organization holds the quality of their product to a high standard, and their customer-base comes to expect a consistent delivery to that effect. It goes without saying that your organization wouldn’t allow sub-par product beyond the bounds of the facility it was produced within. That’s not the issue. The problem is when there is an intolerable amount of unsatisfactory product produced. This waste can cost your organization millions if it isn’t eliminated (or at least, reduced).
When unusable product is left on the factory floor, you’re watching as potential profits go down the drain. Fortunately, the solution to this problem is not complicated. You just need something that will allow you to further hone your assets and processes to ensure what you’re producing is consistently meeting the mark, instead of falling short. That “something” is a comprehensive Predictive Operations Platform with an out-of-the-box predictive quality application. When your subject-matter experts are given the ability to easily leverage your data and identify key insights that allow them to make in-line, real-time adaptations – limiting your waste is just a matter of time.
However, ensure you draw on a predictive analytics solution that places your domain experts front and center. All too often, key problem-solvers are pushed to the side, and that’s a big mistake. A worthy predictive analytics platform understands its role, and it’s certainly not to replace your in-house expertise.
On the contrary, it’s got to speak directly to them. With any solution intending to increase efficiency, speed to actionable insight is everything. And, nothing can go faster in this regard than your domain experts empowered with a predictive platform that understands them and the environment they operate within. With this methodology driving your organization’s efforts, the gap between quality and quantity will quickly disappear.
Producing Too Little, or Too Much
Your operation has a quota to meet, based on the market demand for the product you produce. Targeting that quota is one thing – matching it is another. As much as it’s disastrous to come up short, it can be equally costly to produce more than is needed. So, how do you achieve operational accuracy? How can you build confidence that, no matter the required yield, you can meet it with precision each and every time?
The answer is operational insight. You can get this insight one of two ways. The first is learning from doing production runs over and over again, scouring for the sweet spot until you find it. This is, of course, inefficient and slow. What’s more, it won’t be scalable. You’ll only have a grasp on the sweet spot for those specific conditions. If production needs change, you’ll be back to square one. Fortunately, there’s an alternative approach – implementing a Predictive Operations Platform that offers an easy-to-use predictive throughput application. Instead of tediously testing for the sweet spot, at the expense of operational efficiency in the now, your domain experts can cut through your wealth of data to pinpoint the key insights that will allow them to optimize settings. These small tweaks that your subject-matter experts make, by drawing on predictive insights, result in accurate quantities out the door.
So, not only are you honing your throughput at great speed, but everything you learn can be scaled – allowing you to optimize operations across your enterprise. No more tinkering to slowly find out the best methods for producing what you need. With a predictive throughput application tailored to your expert team of innovators, the idiom “trial and error” will quickly fall out of use.
Unnecessary Consumption of Energy
Energy bills are frustrating – no matter how you slice them. However, if you want to add insult to injury, stack on top of that bill a general lack of understanding for how that invoiced energy was consumed. Down money and in the dark as to how – it doesn’t get much worse than that. There’s no method for stopping the billing cycle for energy consumption.
However, the good news is, by drawing upon your existing data, your problem-solvers can gain a clear picture of how energy is being used within your operations and if there’s an opportunity to trim the fat – which will most likely result in a far more tolerable dollar figure on your balance owing. Any predictive solution worth its salt will offer a predictive energy efficiency application that will allow you to establish soft metering capabilities within the software to optimize operations by quickly and accurately identifying the appropriate energy level outputs to accomplish exactly what your production process needs to achieve. Excess use of energy adds up – especially when you take in the full scope of your enterprise operations.
That’s why learning on the fly and being able to scale adaptations rapidly is key in eliminating unnecessary costs. Frankly, you’re never going to look at a bill and smile.
However, you probably won’t be able to wipe the grin off your face when you look at your end-of-year financials and can evidently see the substantial savings year-over-year. Optimizing operational energy output is made easy through the implementation of a user-friendly Predictive Operations Platform that equips your know-how with a comprehensive predictive energy efficiency application.
Whether you’re overseeing the operation of a production line or a fleet of assets, unscheduled, unplanned downtime can be absolutely devastating to the financial well-being and sustainability of your organization. Frankly, it’s an unacceptable outcome – and rightly so. Compounding the cost of asset or component damage with the cost of production cycles being partially (or completely) halted is no one’s idea of acceptable.
Fortunately, we live in an era where you don’t need to lose sleep over whether an asset failure is lurking just around the corner. Implementing a predictive analytics solution that’s tailored to augment the efforts of your in-house expertise is the best approach to significantly decrease your anxiety regarding downtime and optimize your operations so you can increase your confidence in the probability of uptime. A platform that empowers your domain experts with an insight- rich predictive uptime application will allow for the uncovering of previously unseen root causes that are resulting in operational variabilities – pushing assets outside their optimal range or function.
These variations, if left unchecked, will almost certainly lend themselves to downtime biting you when you least expect it. However, with your subject-matter experts working in tandem with an easily connected predictive solution, these variations will get tamed before they ever have the chance to manifest into full-blown incidents.
Without the ability to identify and interpret variability, you’re forced to take a reactive approach in how you operate. Equipping your organization with an intuitive predictive solution allows you to tangibly plan for future uptime and proactively halt root causes of downtime at the source. Why wait and worry when you can prevent and plan?
Catastrophe is a word you never want to hear uttered in relation to your operations. When an asset gives out because it was being run outside of its optimal parameters, or because it simply had nothing left to give, you’re most likely looking at a multitude of negative impacts on your business. Firstly, the safety and well-being of your people. A catastrophic asset failure, like a blowout (for example), can easily maim or mortally wound one or several workers. This is, obviously, an unacceptable outcome. Secondly, you’re looking at the extensive cost of both having to replace the destroyed assets and having to contend with lengthy downtime interfering with your production cycles.
The good news is, these situations are totally preventable. There are solutions that allow your domain experts to become so intimate with your data that they will be empowered to keep maintenance specialists in the loop on tune-up needs. With a platform that offers subject-matter experts a predictive asset reliability application, your assets will be continuously monitored on their performance and advanced warnings will be provided so maintenance efforts can be planned strategically – preventing unnecessary failures from ever occurring.
With the ability to anticipate any major failure event, you’ll not only build confidence in your operations, improve the effectiveness of your maintenance schedule, and achieve greater uptime – you’ll increase profitability and decrease unnecessary costs. Not to mention, your domain experts will be made to feel that they are contributing in a meaningful way by being equipped to action insight that allows them to continuously innovate.
You should be able to rely on your assets. They are the workhorses of your operation. The best way to build up the quality of that reliability is to plug your data into a Predictive Operations Platform that allows in-line monitoring and empowers domain experts to operationalize insights fast.
Critical Component Failures
It’s a cliché, but bears stating nonetheless - no one piece of equipment is made to last for an eternity. Like everything else, an asset has an expiration date. The key is to get the most out of that piece of machinery as you possibly can – to squeeze every last drop that it has to give. Not only that though. To be totally efficient, you need to be fully apprised of when that last drop will be squeezed. You need to be able to accurately pinpoint when you’ll need to plan a transitioning phase from the aging asset to the replacement. Getting a lot of functional years out of an asset is great.
However, the benefits you experience from a piece of equipment that gives you longevity will all be undone if one of its critical components finally gives out and, because you didn’t have the insights to see it coming, your operation suffers from a period of lower productivity – waiting for the replacement to be installed and made operational. The reality is this, the best resource to draw upon for achieving your profit potential is your in-house know-how.
They know what goals you should be targeting to achieve the greatest level of optimization. The only thing standing between your subject-matter experts and acting on those goals is undiscovered insights that are buried within your existing data.
They need a platform that removes the barrier created by the depth and breadth of your operational information. A solution that puts in their hands a quick-to-insight predictive asset life application will allow them to get closer to your data than they’ve ever been before. Being all the more acquainted with the finer details of what the insights are saying, they will be able to determine when an asset transition plan should be triggered. This ensures your operations won’t be left in the lurch by an unsuspected component failure or asset expiration. Your domain experts will be able to see, in real-time, and deviations or dips in performance, informing their decisions to plan component change-out or total asset transition procedures in the most efficient manner possible.
Running a large-scale operation with production pressures can exploit pain points and augment their potency. However, on the plus side of that, when a pain surfaces, those keen on resolving it aren’t far away. Your in-house experts have the unique operational knowledge, specific to your environment, and the innovative drive to eliminate any challenges. Sometimes, to get the most out of their efforts, it just takes some help being pointed in the right direction.
A comprehensive Predictive Operations Platform with a suite of multifaceted applications will be that guiding light for your domain experts. Allowing them to cut through the informational overload and get right to the insights they are looking to locate; they’ll be able to act on what they learn in days. That means fast pain relief, improved optimization and increased profits. There are very few situations in life where more money means less problems – this is one of those few.
If you’d like to learn more about what a comprehensive Predictive Operations Platform looks like and how easy it should be to implement and use, get started here.