The client, a US-based worldwide manufacturing services company with 100+ plants in 25+ countries, needed innovative solutions to the manufacturing operations challenges it faced at many of its plants.
Trusted to come up with the right solutions, HCLTech became the client’s smart factory partner in 2020. Since then, HCLTech has been involved in several initiatives, including a global rollout of a manufacturing execution system (MES) for the company’s healthcare division at 20+ sites and a manufacturing performance tool that provides visibility of manufacturing operations across all of the company’s plants.
Large and complex applications and operations
The client turned to HCLTech to address these challenges:
- Streamlining complex manufacturing operations caused by each plant having multiple work cells that deliver products to various end customers
- Improving device/batch history record compilation processes that were hindered by physical paper documentation
- Integrating equipment such as CNC machines and extrusion/molding machines
- Integrating external applications such as PLM, ERP, asset management and QMS
- Enhancing visibility of operational data for process stakeholders
Digitalize and integrate operations
HCLTech and the client collaborated to create a plan to tackle the company’s challenges. The plan called for digitalizing manufacturing processes and creating a connected ecosystem via an enterprise-wide integration with ERP systems. It also required visibility into plant operations across work cells within plants, global visualization to cover downtime management and KPI calculations at all plants and maintaining regulatory compliance through electronic device history record (eDHR) enablement
A global MES deployment
HCLTech created a global MES deployment plan (the “plant in a box” approach) that encompassed discovery, design, implementation, testing, rollout and training across 20+ sites in APAC, Europe and the US The agile project was delivered mainly from offshore locations.
The MES incorporates several modules, including dashboards and BI cards that provide visibility and intelligence as well as manufacturing processes for materials and containers such as resource tracking, routing and dispatching, data collection, master data management, tasks and checklists, paperless eDHRs and electronic batch records (eBRs), bills of materials, electronic work instructions/SOPs, traceability and genealogy tracking. Another key module is quality processes for statistical process control, exceptions, NCR, CAPA and documentation management, while integration and automation of enterprise-wide applications such as ERP, PLM, Connect IoT and MuleSoft API streamline production. Finally, implementation of an AWS-based manufacturing performance tool creates near real-time production dashboards and tracks downtime.
Productivity, visibility and traceability that position the company for growth
HCLTech’s MES has streamlined the company’s complex manufacturing processes and increased its productivity, visibility into plant operations and traceability of processes and shop-floor materials. The company is also benefitting from:
- Increased quality in the manufacturing process
- Low maintenance due to a single reporting source
- Reductions in scrap, which improve yield
- Automation of formerly manual operations, eliminating 100 % of paper-based processes via a digital solution that reduces re-work, saves time and effort, ensures operations visibility and enables eDHRs