OEM&Lieferant Ausgabe 2/2018 / OEM&Supplier Edition 2/2018

136 Previously, under the shop floor management system introduced in 2012, all relevant produc- tion data was recorded manually and then pro- cessed and analyzed using Excel. “Of course, that was very time-consuming,” observes Marcel. “Downtime, batch numbers, rejection rates, disruption, and capacity utiliza- tion on our production lines – these and a lot more data were recorded on so-called ‘produc- tion tracking sheets’ and transferred the next day to a spreadsheet in Excel. The figures were then analyzed, and the results posted up.” In 2014, the decision was taken to automate and digitalize the process of logging production data. “In fact, given the strong growth we were experiencing, we had no choice but to go down that route if we wanted to remain effi- cient,” explains Bernd Braß. After several intensive test phases, Bernd Braß and his team finally introduced the MDL sys- tem company-wide at the beginning of 2017. It was not just a question of implementing new software. When you’re logging data, it’s impor- tant to keep employees on board to avoid any misgivings. “It’s got nothing to do with moni- toring their performance. The aim is simply to make production more transparent so that we can quickly identify any discrepancies and take whatever remedial action is required as soon as possible. In turn, that leads to greater effi- ciency, and of course that is what we are look- ing to achieve. We also worked closely with the works council throughout the process,” ex- plains Marcel. Following the launch, Marcel took over responsibility for MDL from Bernd Braß and is now in charge of analyzing and maintaining the machine data and presenting the resulting indicators. The first thing members of the team do every morning in the manufacturing cockpit is call up the MDL interface on a huge touchscreen to give them an overview of their respective pro- duction lines (either for a single division or, for servicing purposes, all our production lines). This ensures that those employees who come in on the early shift don’t miss anything that may have happened the night before. The fact that all divisions and employees work with the same body of data means that any errors will be spotted sooner. Thanks to the MDL system, any problems that arise during production can be identified at a glance. If a production line breaks down, re- mains stuck for too long or produces a lot of re- jects, it can be monitored in real time and im- mediate action can be taken. Errors are automatically analyzed, allowing the team to optimize production and maintenance pro- cesses. The result has been a major increase in productivity since the system went live in early 2017. “That’s partly because we receive the in- formation we need almost immediately if a problem arises. The program alerts us straight away, and we don’t have to spend a lot of time looking for the cause. That means we can re- spond quickly and take whatever action is required. It’s all much simpler than it used to be,” says Marcel Sanchez-Martin. Of course, there is a lot more to it than instal- ling a new piece of software. “The tool on its own won’t deliver the improvements we are looking for. You have to put the right measures in place based on your analysis of the data. In that way, the tool allows you to explore prob- lematic areas faster and in greater depth.” Machine data logging at Thomas Efficiency through transparency By Katja Teixeira, Thomas Magnete GmbH In today’s world, it would be impossible to imagine manufacturing processes without machine data logging. MDL is a crucial element of Industry 4.0 production. It involves sending data from all the different production lines to a cen- tral data logging system for further processing. Bernd Braß (Director Production Service) and Marcel Sanchez-Martin (Director Lean Management) explain what has changed at Thomas since the introduction of MDL in early 2017. Images: © Thomas Magnete GmbH Thomas Magnete GmbH www.thomas-magnete.com The software indicates the status of the requested produc- tion line at a glance. Marcel Sanchez-Martin (Director Lean Management) and Bernd Braß (Director Production Service) Website + Efficiency gains through real-time digitalized data logging + Rapid fault analysis and maintenance thanks to greater transparency + Reduced downtime > Productivity gains MDE at THOMAS IT and Automotive