How Do IT Solutions Help in Modern Manufacturing? Andersen’s Case for Siemens Factories
Increasing production efficiency has always been one of the key challenges in manufacturing management. Now this task is being solved mainly with the help of automation and digitalization. In this article, we are going to consider a real case of introducing digital technologies into the production process at Siemens factories.
The problem of document flow in production
Until recently, every worker at a Siemens plant in Serbia would work their shifts with a pile of documents and specifications necessary for the job. Professionals had to exchange data manually, which also slowed down production processes. The German conglomerate turned to Andersen for help in solving the paperwork problem.
What Andersen’s specialists suggested
The basic idea of solving the paperwork problem was to equip the employees’ workplaces with industrial tablets. Thus, each employee would have the opportunity to receive the necessary drawings, specifications, and other information in digital form. This would also make it possible to update the statuses of projects, make changes to the documentation, and transfer it further along the chain.
Resources required for implementation
Three of Andersen’s specialists joined the Siemens IT team to implement the project: two .NET Developers and a Business Analyst.
Development of software for the system was carried out using the following technologies:
- .NET framework 4.7 ASP.NET MVC,
The project started in Autumn 2019, and in Spring 2020, employees of the Siemens plant in Serbia began to work with documentation on their new tablets.
What working with documentation at the Siemens plant looks like now
The application for working with documentation, which is installed on tablets, plays a supporting role, so the interface and functionality are as simple as possible.
The main screen of the application is a table with all tasks and subtasks available to the user (plant employee). By selecting one of the processes on the right side of the table, the user sees related subtasks (in the lower block) and all documentation (on the left side). The user can change the status of the process — for example, launch it into production — or simply get the necessary information about it.
Using the search function, an employee can find a task, as well as examine the details and related documentation. Also, in a separate window, the employee can report the results of the task, for example, indicate the number of manufactured products.
The user can download all drawings and specifications they have access to in PDF format.
By pressing the LT button, the user can view information about the desired part directly in the application. The 3D model of the part and technical specifications will open on the right side of the screen.
Now the paperwork at the Siemens plant in Serbia is carried out electronically. The workplaces of employees working with documentation are equipped with tablets that access information bases. Specialists can view the documents they need and make changes, which are then seen by their colleagues. This saves time on sharing project information and also speeds up production processes.
After several months of working with tablets, the company recorded an increase in productivity of 20%. The satisfaction rate reached 90%.