In a perfect world, businesses would be able to count on a stable cost for raw materials, predictable customer demands, and reliable suppliers.
These days, we’d be glad to have any one of those factors.
Manufacturers need supply chain visibility from end to end, that has the agility and flexibility to adapt to fluctuations in cost, demand, and supply.
We have a critical need for real-time, enterprise visibility.
You can’t manage what you can’t see!
- raw materials,
- finished goods,
- capital assets,
- and, yes, people!
The movement of these assets across your production floor can accelerate your efficiency and profitability, or stall it.
Industry analysts at IDC Manufacturing Insights estimated that $900 billion worth of waste is slipping through global supply chains.
Lean manufacturing (or lean production) is intended to reduce waste and add value.
These goals aren’t mutually exclusive. Creating value for the customer means working efficiently—reducing waste and errors—so that flawless products are flawlessly delivered.
To achieve this high standard, we need the power of information technology.
IT provides a direct route to data, wherever you are and whenever you need it. With real-time location solutions (RTLS), RFID, and enterprise-grade mobile devices, management has the opportunity to get a dashboard view of activities:
- check the status of raw materials,
- work-in-process reports,
- equipment repairs,
- and shipment updates.
Increase the efficiency of your Kanban system from a manual to an automated one. Why pay forklift operators to sit and wait for the line to signal the need for more materials?
Zebra Technologies calls this “Enterprise Asset Intelligence” (EAI).
The data of EAI gives management the insight to track performance and make changes.
- Identify processes that need improvement
- Uncover waste and plug up those holes
- Increase efficiency
- Decrease errors
Enterprise visibility improves the view of every asset—people, place, or thing. And it comes from the use of automated data collection solutions, using Zebra’s ultra-rugged barcode scanners, RFID readers, handheld computers, wearables, vehicle-mounted mobile computers, enterprise-class tablets, and industrial printers. All of these products can be found here.
When a worker can scan a barcode and signal the need for replenishment without leaving the line, you have ROI in the making. When you can get machine-to-machine (M2M) communication, before an equipment failure, you bypass costly downtime. Use sensors to capture and transmit data that gives you the ability to make faster, more informed decisions. Avoid time-consuming data entry that not only costs in labor, but also in delays in getting the information you need.
Get a better perspective on your business. Get the power of real-time, enterprise visibility – contact us to get started.
About the Author:
Trevor DiMarco is a Solutions Sales Engineer at L-Tron Corporation and uses his broad experience in engineering and operations to help customers find solutions that meet their needs. In his spare time, Trevor likes to feed fish while pretending to be an accomplished angler. Trevor can be reached at Trevor.DiMarco@L-Tron.com or (800) 830-9523.