Part 3 of 4

Graphic of man drawing an idea board about ERPThe previous entry in this series gave you a list of reasons why relying on your older software and technologies could wreak havoc on your business. To remain competitive in today’s ever-changing market, asset-driven data should be at the heart of the decision making in industry operations. That leads us to the even greater reason on our list that was saved for last:

Reason 4: Old Systems Mean Old Data

And as you know, old data is often incorrect data. In the past, it was thought that data could be collected at the end of a day, week, or series. Manufacturers would extract the accumulated data and try to piece together meaning. However, if data is prioritized instead of treated as a final step, it can be used to build the foundation of your technology and success.

Systems like ERP and MES can be greatly reliant on manual data input; it’s probably not uncommon to witness an operator, maybe even on your own factory floor, scrupulously entering information into a computer or touchscreens like part counts, completing quality check sheets, and recording transactions. This takes time away from other tasks that need their focus and leaves the company vulnerable to human error either due to distraction, faulty intel, or a simple typo.

Another concern with data and older systems is that not all technology plays well with others. Your factory floor runs on all sorts of technologies, and they have to be able to speak to one another. Think about your personal technologies; it doesn’t matter if I sent a message or looked up a website on my laptop, phone, tablet, or smart watch because it’s all connected. When I need to find that information again, I can, and I can do so quickly. That’s how your system should run on the floor as well.

When you have a cohesive ecosystem of software and technologies, the data is now available across your entire enterprise.  As it should be; data should be accessible to your team as a whole because with more available data, your team has more dynamic knowledge and understanding of what is happening in the process, and they can adjust and improve as needed.

What does this look like more simply?

Real-time applications: machine and operational data can be live-streamed to engineers, operators, and floor supervisors, allowing for faster reaction times.

Reporting flexibility: built-in reporting allows for comprehensive data through Production Application Programming Interface (APIs) for analytical decision making.

Connected workflows: Systems on the factory floor (ERP, CMMS, and Work Instructions) can be connected, allowing for accurate data

No- or Low- code integrations: data, workflows, and processes can be integrated with easily configured connections or prebuilt-scripts can connect systems to each other with just a few simple steps.

Data-centric operating systems can save your business time and money in a number of ways. There will be no more scrambling for parts because your accumulated data will notify you long before you need to acquire more. Failing or broken equipment will no longer be a concern because instead of relying on calendar-based maintenance, the system will diagnose and predict disruptions before they happen. This allows for production to remain on time as well as consistent in quality, as the system can also detect and diagnose machine issues that might compromise quality production; it will also eliminate error and detect trends. Data-centric operating systems also allow for automated scheduling and keep track of cycle times and performance benchmarks.

So there you have it: the reasons that a data-based automation overtaking your system is not at all a bad thing. Though, we’re not quite done. Keep exploring this series to find out exactly what you can do from here to help your business be the strongest, most competitive it can be. Or dive right in and visit and for further information or call 586.464.4400 to speak with us about beginning the process today.