Having a head in the cloud can help bring agility and adaptability to manufacturing processes

A very bright landscape of clouds above the cloud line | IFS

Manufacturing is an industry where cloud technology can make a large impact, with IFS Cloud in particular being an example of how introducing modern systems can improve the overall quality and efficiency of factory floors.

One way to conceptualize how cloud-enhanced manufacturing processes can provide a positive impact is by examining the workflow of a factory production controller – seeing how they use AI to hit all their delivery goals, while also providing important information to business leadership.

The start of the day begins with logging into the work systems. Should a business implement IFS technology, then IFS Lobby will be what the production controller sees first. Through this cloud-powered dashboard, key data is visualized for easier understanding by role or process and important metrics, like pending orders, operational status, a summary of materials and a general workflow overview, are on full display.

On the chance that a machine in the production line has an error, the production controller can immediately spot the problem machine from the IFS Lobby dashboard. From the dashboard, the production manager can use the Manufacturing Execution System, or MES, to drill straight down to review the overall effectiveness of the machine using technologies like IoT or machine language translation and figure out how to get it back on track. Through MES, real-time insights can be examined directly from the shop floor. With the data provided, shop floor patterns can also be identified and acted upon. Plus, getting the machine up and running again can then be achieved entirely remotely through IFS Lobby.

With the machine back in working condition again, the impact on the production line needs to be considered. Using Manufacturing Scheduling Optimization, or MSO, the controller can quickly construct a new production plan. IFS Cloud’s built-in AI connects with the rest of the factory machines to ensure the new plan is taking full advantage of all the machinery on hand. Once the plan has been put in place, the rest of the shop floor workers will be informed of it via their tablet devices.

Now that production is back on track again, the production controller can now replan the rest of the schedule. IFS Cloud takes all data, including production delays, into account when recalculating a schedule. When meeting with leadership, the production controller will refer to all the processes tracked through IFS Lobby as a means of explaining how production was led back on track.

In an increasingly modernized industry, businesses can’t afford to ignore the potential of artificial intelligence. Consider the impact cloud-enhanced services could have on a manufacturer – it could provide a headstart on the road to optimization and modernization.