Plant Insights

Supporting Human Work – Digitally

February 05, 2020

Chances are, when we were growing up, our parents would express their being thankful for our “Guardian Angel” and keeping us safe from harm and generally looking-out for our well-being.

Supporting Human Work – Digitally

Chances are, when we were growing up, our parents would express their being thankful for our “Guardian Angel” and keeping us safe from harm and generally looking-out for our well-being. And certainly, some Guardian Angels seemed to have to work much harder than others.

Today, we rely far less on poltergeists, apparitions, and the spirit world. Instead, we rely on our training, our colleagues, our equipment, and how we collect, evaluate, and make decisions from all the sources of information at our disposal. The risks here are to be found in the gaps between the information and it getting to us in a timely and complete manner.

Here, the measured and pragmatic introduction of technology can facilitate and accelerate the collection and dissemination of information – getting it to those who need in a timely, predictable, and organized manner so that sound and informed decisions can be made more quickly and reliably.

In the process industry especially, this information and the decisions it supports will help keep operators safe and minimize stress, improve the reliability of the product being produced, and maximize the uptime of the equipment to fully capitalize on the assets and resources being used.

In essence, the technology digitally supports the efforts of the people. And in the process industry, the benefits can be especially rewarding in the support of shift operations.

But as is human nature, there is resistance to anything new – the fear of the unknown is a powerful force that needs to be addressed sooner rather than later. This is especially true when new technologies are introduced. So, the challenge is to overcome these fears and gain the acceptance of the operators to integrate any new way it into their work life. What is especially important is to alleviate fears related to the notion that digitization will eliminate jobs.

Consider an airliner; even with all of its technology and automation, you still want a trained pilot and crew to monitor the state of the aircraft and be available to make critical and knowledgeable decisions based on information that is being delivered in real-time.

So the introduction of new technology has to be a collaborative effort and include the operators on the shop floor to establish buy-in up front. It needs to be demonstrated that the technology will be of direct and tangible benefit to them – to make their lives safer and their efforts more productive. These benefits can be demonstrated by the combination of technical data with user input – whether found internal to the eschbach solutions or originating from external systems – to simplify the operators work and to offer new insights by adding context and converting Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) sensor data into information on which the operators can make better decisions more quickly.

The solutions from eschbach and our approach are specifically designed to meet these challenges.

Our solutions are designed with the user/operator in mind. The terminology used throughout our applications will be familiar to the people using the systems and the overall user interface and experience – including guided processes for data input and advanced yet simple search functionality – is designed to be easy for the operator to learn and to use. As such, implementation is straight-forward and simple with minimum disruption for the operators or operations.

Being developed collaboratively with companies and experienced professionals, our solutions are based on a robust set of best-practices certain to satisfy your requirements. In addition, we are always seeking new best-practices to incorporate into our solutions and update those already existing to ensure we help to keep you the best you can be.

And ultimately, implementing best-of-breed solutions that already exist is an infinitely superior approach than trying to develop custom solutions in-house. By implementing best-of-breed solutions, you will get; a more robust feature set, lower cost to implement, lower overall cost of ownership, and the ability to implement new capabilities faster and with less investment. And, most important, you get all of this now – not at some undetermined time in the future.

The solutions themselves can be implemented on-premises with user-owned information systems. But it is designed to be a Software as a Service (SaaS) solution that is hosted. Implementing as a SaaS solution has considerable benefit as there is no need for a special server or information technology infrastructure, this mean the implementation investment requirements and overall cost of ownership are at a minimum. And with browser-based accessibility even from mobile devices, those who need to access the system and the information are untethered and can operate the system from anywhere (given internet availability). We also integrate with SAP to reduce double-work and the opportunities for errors, omissions, and delays that go along with it.

The success of implementation is assured with our prescriptive approach to deployment. We work with the operators up-front to establish a collaborative and constructive working relationship so that fears are abated, success criterion are mutually decided, and ownership is established. Then our expert consultants work with the operators to configure the system to maximize its ease-of-use and to ensure the mutual expectations that are set are met. And finally, we conduct on-site workshops ensure all operators are properly trained and on-boarded in the use of the system.

But our job is not yet done.

As your advocate, we are always available to support your efforts in the system and to collaborate with you on improvements and adaptations as your business and its needs evolve over time.

eschbach and its solutions will drive real and tangible benefit to you, your company, its employees, and its customers. We will do this by;

  • Increasing the safety of your workers and plants. Recent studies showed that most reported safety incidents can be tied directly to communication breakdowns, we make sure it does not happen.
  • Increasing the efficiency of your operations team by enabling more efficient, tamper-proof, and easier shift communications and handover and allowing for more time to be devoted to production.
  • Greatly reduce the time necessary for creating and sharing information and documentation – and the corresponding efforts to search for existing documentation and other non-value-add activity for your shift team. Our case studies have shown that this will save at least one hour per week (and often more) for each operator in their efforts to search for information and creating documentation. 

And we will accomplish this with minimum disruption and maximum of collaboration.

With eschbach as your partner – as your Guardian Angel – we will help to protect and to care for your most valuable asset; your people. Contact us today to discuss how we can be of service.

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