There is a tendency in the wire and cable industry to treat integration as a project — getting department managers and technical staff together and completing the project during one big push before moving on to the next project.
Integration is only revisited when problems start to occur on the shop floor or when it becomes evident that competitors are operating and manufacturing with ever-greater speed and efficiency.
This approach needs to be revised.
Treating integration as a one-time project is a risky strategy. Especially when the investment in time and money are at their most significant at the outset, and the profit payoff is often sometime in the future. The enduring benefits that seemed promising and certain at the outset will gradually decline.
A weak link in the company’s data integration — whether through a build-up of errors or under-utilizing of data capabilities — impacts the ability to maximize the power in each system. Or, to put it another way: a company’s automation is as robust as its weakest data integration.
There is another strategy that is much more likely to achieve the intended operational and financial benefits.
Integration to monitor and control the business
The problem — and opportunity — is this: integration is not just about transferring information from one system to another at a point in time — it’s about monitoring and controlling the business.
With so many technical requirements (and personnel) involved, it’s easy to fall into the trap of only focusing on overcoming the immediate technical challenges. And the longer the project takes, the greater the temptation is to reach a minimum-viable solution and move on.
When this happens, the return on investment promised at the outset can never be achieved. This is because the project’s purpose has been forgotten along the way, and the focus is almost exclusively on achieving the initial technical integration.
The continual smartification mindset
Effective data integration — an integration allowing a factory to monitor and control the business — must be embedded within an ongoing smartification process.
The continual improvement approach requires ongoing optimization of data integration between various systems — it’s the only way to reap the long-term rewards from any data integration project and achieve the financial payback the project intended to achieve.
Continual smartification means that the data integration rewards are not left to chance. This approach ultimately underpins the success of any data integration project within a wire and cable factory.
Get connected with our sales team
Thanks for your interest in our products and services. Let's collect some information so we can connect you with the right person.