Four challenges businesses need to overcome to accelerate digital transformation

What businesses must do to get moving faster and empower remote workers to increase asset reliability and productivity

Posted: July 22, 2020

Asset Performance

Four challenges businesses need to overcome to accelerate digital transformation

At many organizations, the pace of digital transformation has reached hyper-speed over the past few months. To overcome the uncertainties and challenges they face, businesses must shift organizational mindsets and adopt technologies that support business continuity and sustainability.

But what does that mean to maintenance and operations? And what must companies do to continue to serve the people who depend on them for products, services, and livelihoods?

1) Enabling remote work

Consider the virtualization of work. In a survey conducted by Deloitte China in January 20201, 90% of the respondents said that it was an urgent requirement to provide their employees with remote and flexible work options.

In an operations environment, however, information systems are not designed for remote access, and critical data is usually locked within the plant. Another challenge that arises when the workforce is suddenly distributed is an increase in online activity, which can affect system stability, virtual private network (VPN) infrastructure, and security tools to support peak-traffic demands.

With subject matter experts (SMEs) working from home or elsewhere, how can your company adapt to providing remote access to data and consolidated situational awareness of plant operations?

Cloud technologies can connect people to the information they need to get their jobs done. Providing secure access to operations data—anywhere, anytime—enables users to consolidate data from multiple systems, including HMIs, SCADA, Historians, and Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) devices to build a holistic view of asset and process performance.

Learn more: 5 tips for easing the remote workforce transition 

2) Preventing asset failures

With the advent of the IIoT, today it’s possible to monitor nearly every aspect of operating assets. But if more than 80% of asset failures are random2, how much of that data do you miss? How much do you not see, not interpret, or not use?

Data analytics, such as condition monitoring and predictive analytics, can detect early signs of random issues days, weeks, or months before failure. This allows SMEs to plan corrective actions and cut costs without jeopardizing the reliability and safety of the assets.

Our customers report saving millions due to early warning of asset performance issues and identifications inefficiencies, and up to 15% increase in asset availability.

3) Preparing for the changing workforce

At many companies, more than half of the workforce will be retiring in the next three to five years. Most of these workers are in key management and supervisory positions with the extensive experience and tribal knowledge that keeps operations running safely. How will their expertise make it to your next workforce generation?

And with digital natives expecting much shorter tenures, it is also critical that systems are easy to use, easy to understand. Shortening the ramp-up time and driving informed decisions from the get-go.

Companies must find ways to capture and retain that tribal knowledge continuously. Providing teams with workflows and validated remediation to known failure causes enables them to solve issues faster, minimize unplanned downtime, and increase safety. Companies that successfully tap into this knowledge report results such as improved workforce effectiveness and lower maintenance and inspection costs.

4) Eliminating bottlenecks in production

It is well known that productivity improvement is one of the biggest challenges for companies striving to remain competitive in a global market. Operations personnel can spend several hours making adjustments in response to changing raw materials, and often lose productivity because they are unable to identify the root cause of declining Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE). How can your teams quickly identify which plant assets are pulling their weight and which ones are not?

The ability to continuously monitor OEE of production lines in real time empowers personnel to take immediate actions to enhance performance and productivity. With this higher level of insight, users can quickly identify line bottlenecks and improve operating efficiencies that result in reduced costs and increased return on assets (ROA).

Are you ready to start?

AVEVA Insight enables your company to transform faster, securely delivering data wherever your teams are located. Our proven technology helps to increase operational reliability and productivity by connecting workers to the information they need to identify and respond to anomalies quickly.

You can try AVEVA Insight for 45 days free of charge, start your free trial now at insight.connect.aveva.com.

Or learn how AVEVA Insight can strengthen your remote workforce.

Download the Infographic

1. https://www2.deloitte.com/global/en/insights/economy/covid-19/heart-of-resilient-leadership-responding-to-covid-19.html) 
2. Smith, R., and Mobley, R. Keith - Rules of Thumb for Maintenance and Reliability Engineers 

author
Written By
Matheus Figueiredo

Matheus is the Product Marketing Manager for Information products at AVEVA. With more than 7 years of experience in the industrial software industry, Matheus has extensive knowledge on automation systems, data management platforms, and the Industrial Internet of Things.

Download the Whitepaper:  Digital Agility Forges Digital Resilience    

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