August 07, 2020
COVID-19 has caused a dramatic shift in manufacturers’ operational procedures. To meet the challenges of this new normal, the digitization of communication processes is a top priority.
COVID-19 has caused a dramatic shift in manufacturers’ operational procedures. To meet the challenges of this new normal, the digitization of communication processes is a top priority. When managed correctly, it can provide a basis for building operational-knowledge capital and exploiting new opportunities. Consider shift-to-shift management, a vulnerable point in 24/7 plant operations that relies on information transfer in written and verbal form and comprises a specific regimen of tasks, often related to regulatory compliance such as product quality, environment, safety and health.
High-quality handover process
In a handover, shift supervisors generally physically meet in order to review the current status of operations. These meetings are usually around a whiteboard listing pressing issues, in front of control-room monitors giving up-to-date process-control data. However, due to social-distancing restrictions, the relief team may not come in contact with the outgoing team. This affects operational continuity.
A good handover needs preparation prior to the ending of the shift, including status of work permits and safety-critical systems (SCS), production status, executed activities, and ongoing priorities. To align all these sources, a plant-specific standard procedure managed by a digital shift-management solution is essential, allowing virtual handovers and providing a formal digital record of plant operations.