Automation is the art of transforming manually performed business activities into processes that are orchestrated and controlled through software solutions. Both simple and complex scenarios are standardized. Scenarios are automatically executed by using integrated components and applications, such as MES, workflow and rules engines, and real-time event processing.
For better traceability and transparency, interaction between the operator and the tools – e.g. to start a process step – first needs to be simplified.
Incorporating paperless workflow activities is a precondition to create “a single source of truth”, that every operator and decision-maker can rely on.
Not only does it help to make process steps visible to multiple team-members, it also reduces time to resolve non-compliance issues.
Standardized and streamlined business processes are essential for manufacturing enterprises managing a network of sites with an international footprint.
Standardization allows decision-makers to monitor and compare productivity, and to align manufacturing of the same products – or to transfer processes – across various sites.
Audits by OEM or customers can be better prepared and augmented with the necessary information.
With the digitization of systems that enable tracking and tracing of the transformation of raw material into finished goods, cost-information is captured more precisely, including labor.
The best known of these systems is the Manufacturing Execution System (MES), although, in most cases there are additional operational systems required to fulfill the requirements of digital manufacturing (SPC, RMS, FDC, R2R, etc.).
In order to automate manufacturing processes to achieve a lean operational model with limited operator interaction, all redundant activities should be eliminated.
These processes must first be defined and standardized before they are automated.