The coronavirus is holding the entire world in a firm grip, including the manufacturing industry. Where some manufacturers have had to shut down their plants entirely, others are struggling due to drops in demand or lack of essential supplies. Opposed to other industries, frontline manufacturing staff can’t take their work to the safety of their homes. Plant leaders are therefore looking for ways to navigate through this crisis and adapt to the next normal—a long-lasting period of uncertainty combined with stringent hygiene measures and physical distancing. With the majority of manufacturers still working with paper-based processes, we’d like to emphasize what benefits a digital way of working can bring to your factory, especially during this crisis. It can really set your factory apart from the rest. Here’s how:
After the introduction of Poka Yoke in the 1960s by Shigeo Shingo, an industrial engineer at Toyota, manufacturers have been using it to reduce inevitable human mistakes and defects in production. Though the concept is great, many factories are still struggling with implementing this concept, often due to poor user adoption. Using digital technology, you can easily introduce the Poka Yoke concept, digitize all Poka Yoke steps, and enhance user adoption with mobile capabilities. Not only will this help increase your Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE), it will also create a safer shop floor and improve knowledge capturing.
Making essential information readily accessible to your operators lies at the very basis of your manufacturing and maintenance processes. This means that exactly the right policy, Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), manual, One-Point Lesson (OPL) or Out of Control Action Plan (OCAP), etc. is retrievable - or pops up - at the right place on the factory floor at the right time, enabling workers to do their job autonomously. Now, in times of COVID-19, this has become more relevant than ever due to higher absence rates. When implemented well, knowledge management enables AI, nudges operators, mobile apps and cognitive interfaces to make operators more productive on the shop floor and your operations more cost-efficient – safeguarding plant continuity during the Corona crisis.
Are you ready to eliminate paper from your factory? Good. Meet SmartForms, a supporting application on our 4Industry platform that allows you to build your own mobile-ready digital forms. You can customize forms and flows with 14 different types of fields to choose from and advanced settings like push notifications and form triggering. Assignees can annotate and upload images as evidence, trigger checklists or prefill a form by scanning QR codes with their mobile devices and much more. Let’s explore how SmartForms works for three specific use cases – inspections, audits and checklists.