Data & Analytics, Digitization

Lower costs and faster response times with the right KPIs

Daniel Gburek04/30/2020

In manufacture, planning plays a major role. Manufacturing and assembly are often divided into individual steps that have to be linked together in a multi-stage planning process. But good planning is not the same as fighting half the battle. After all, discrepancies can occur during production that influence the due dates, quality, or costs of the end product.

Get a handle on manufacturing with business intelligence

Business intelligence (BI) solutions help your employees to identify discrepancies early in the manufacturing process by monitoring, consolidating, and evaluating the key performance indicators of all production resources. With all the key factors available to them at a glance, your staff can respond quickly to plan variances such as

  • Machine utilization
  • Order status
  • Adherence to schedules
  • Material costs
  • Produced quantities
  • Quality

They can also refer to time series comparisons and “what-if scenarios”. The transparency and resilience of the data significantly contributes to reducing reaction times in the event of difficult situations. In the long term, this also improves the information base for management decisions and provides added potential for process optimization. No manufacturing company can afford to operate in the dark these days.

Concerns are unfounded

Medium-sized companies in particular commonly start off by asking the following questions:

  • Do we meet the prerequisites for implementing BI software?
  • How do we get the required production data into the system if we still partially work on paper?
  • Aren’t professional analysis tools really expensive?
  • What if our employees reject the new software?

The answer is that a lack of overview and delayed reaction times will sooner or later result in competitive disadvantages. Burying your head in the sand and doing nothing is not an option.

Focusing on the right key figures

Unlike other BI softwares, COSMO CONSULT’s solution for manufacturing companies comes with predefined data models and reports that let you consolidate and analyze information from Microsoft ERP systems or other data sources such as Microsoft Excel. Thanks to the short implementation period, your staff will quickly be able to start using “self-service” to evaluate and visualize data in real-time. No more flying blind. There’s no in-depth programming or database knowledge required – just a short user training session. The simple, intuitive user experience ensures a high level of user acceptance.

With professional BI software, your staff will finally be able to focus on those key performance indicators that have been flying under the radar until now. Ideally, consult with all departments to decide which factors are most relevant to your company. Work together to define the biggest determinants, and get Management involved in the process.

Grow your prospects with data

Let’s say you notice some missing or inaccurate information in your analyses. Now you have to figure out what caused the issue and fix it. One approach is to fall back on tried-and-tested methods. Maybe what you’re lacking is accurate machine tooling times. In a pinch, you could grab a stopwatch, record the times, and make a spreadsheet. The data exists – you just need to make it available. Many BI projects start off small, often with just five issues – but development is dynamic, meaning that you reach more than 50 decision-relevant factors within a very short space of time.

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Author:
Daniel Gburek
Solution Manager Data & Analytics | COSMO CONSULT