Manufacturing leaders are driving mobility on the plant floor in an effort to increase production efficiency and reduce human errors. Mobile technology has evolved significantly in recent years and has the potential to benefit almost every aspect in the manufacturing cycle. Here are six advantages to going mobile on the plant floor.
Mobile devices allow employees on and off the plant floor to have the critical information they need at their fingertips. Many mobile applications deliver content based on the user’s location or the task being performed. A mobilized plant floor makes communication possible at any time, regardless of where workers or supervisors are located.
Increased Product Order Accuracy
The ability to order inventory on the go greatly improves efficiency and can improve customer relationships. Human error can be reduced when the mobile app produces the correct form and allows data entry via barcode scanning. Instant updates allow management to check the status of any order at any time and accurately locate supplies. With the right mobile apps, it’s possible to receive instant order-status updates from anywhere in the plant.
An engineer or production manager with a mobile device in hand when standing in front of a machine has access to accurate instructions, usage graphs, and warnings regarding the equipment’s status. Caution notices and complete instructions create a safer working environment and reduce potential damage to equipment and harm to workers. App users can also access videos on proper maintenance or repair techniques to reduce errors.
Usually, when a piece of machinery has an issue, maintenance staff wastes critical time leaving the plant floor to find relevant schematics and troubleshooting resources to correct the issue. Mobile solutions can display the correct documents relevant to the equipment, and direct workers to the specific part of equipment that requires attention, allowing them to quickly analyze the problem. Since production downtime costs are often measured in hundreds or thousands of dollars per minute, mobile solutions can save huge amounts of money.
Mobile is meant to be easy. With a variety of apps and operating systems, mobile systems provide real-time management and reporting tools that are highly beneficial to manufacturers. Workers appreciate easy-to-understand technology and are more likely to use it, so successful mobile apps will have simple and intuitive interfaces. Smooth integration with existing plant floor systems is appealing to many plant floor operators.
Employees want to carry a mobile device from one machine to another, not wheel around a computer and monitor. Hands-free solutions such as wearables take mobility a step further, enabling plant workers in a variety of roles. Mobile devices are suited to meet the needs of various technicians and engineers on the plant floor without disrupting their daily routines.
The net result of mobility on the plant floor is greater communication, teamwork, and responsiveness to customer-driven deadlines and delivery dates—and the advantages will continue to multiply.