Transform Manufacturing with Connected Worker

A Solution for Efficiency, Collaboration and Operational Excellence

2023 was the worst year on record for company insolvencies with 26,595 failures. Manufacturing accounted for 8% of the insolvencies in 2023 (R3 Association of Business Recovery Professionals). While the media and factories may blame the pandemic and the cost-of-living crisis, many potential problems have long been entrenched internally in the factories.

On the one hand, manufacturers have paid high prices for inefficiency with old machines and processes. On the other hand, the lack of employee engagement has led to low productivity. According to a Deloitte report, an estimated 49% of factory workers lose 10 minutes of productivity per hour due to technological and process inefficiencies.

To survive in the increasingly competitive commercial world, manufacturers must not only invest in digital systems but also engage employees in the performance improvement process. Connected Worker is the technology that can encourage digital transformation in factories and improve the synergy between technology and humans.

What is Connected Worker?

Connected Worker is a modern technology application that unifies operators, leaders, maintenance teams, and other workers with real-time actionable information, enabling them to stay connected and perform their jobs more efficiently and productively.

Tablets, mobile apps, wearable devices, IoT devices and digital work procedures are all examples of connected worker technologies. A real-time view of operations and production line performance is available at their fingertips, keeping operators and leaders updated and connected.

Harford Connected Worker Digital Transformation Manufacturing

Why do Manufacturers Need Connected Worker?

Connected Worker technologies have already proven beneficial for 80% of leaders who have implemented ‘Connected Worker’, according to LNS Research. Let’s take a closer look at the advantages that manufacturers are experiencing in their plants.

Empower Frontline Workers

Connected Worker empowers frontline workers to take ownership of the process and resolve problems independently. During quality checks or barcode scanning, operators receive real-time feedback. In the event of an issue, automated error-proofing allows operators to report and address the problem immediately, preventing product defects, batch rejections and product recalls. This approach allows frontline workers to actively engage in the process and improve productivity, fostering a culture of Right First Time.

Harford Control Connected Worker real-time actionable data

Make Data-Driven Decisions

Connected Worker enables factory managers to access and monitor real-time information. In the event of a downtime alert, factory managers can conduct a ‘5 Whys’ analysis and root cause analysis to identify areas for improvement and make data-driven decisions to reduce defects and enhance product quality on a higher level. Factory managers can access the performance data (i.e. OEE, quality, downtime, etc.) conveniently on their mobile devices, anytime and anywhere.

Improve Productivity and Drive Continuous Improvement

Imagine a factory using Connected Worker: A continuous improvement manager, using his computer tablet, identifies the bottlenecks causing downtime. An operation manager records short interval control hourly stats at their fingertips, preparing for an in-depth line performance analysis. A supervisor reviews the incident reports and health and safety reports on his mobile device while he’s on a business trip.

By replacing old devices and inefficient processes with Connected Worker and engaging their employees with smart devices, manufacturers can access real-time actionable information. This enables operators to complete tasks more effectively and empowers the team to drive continuous improvement.

What Happens When There Are Disconnected Workers?

Despite an increasing awareness of the benefits of Connected Worker, we still find that ‘disconnected workers’ are more common in many factories. Departments such as production, technical and quality function within their own silos, like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, lacking comprehensive insights into the entirety of the factory. This fragmentation not only impedes effective communication and collaboration but also hinders the ability to identify overarching issues that may impact the entire production process. Even worse, the disconnectivity might lead to a blame culture among departments, further impeding the factory’s improvement objectives.

By choosing a reliable and trusted technology partner, manufacturers can fully understand the use of Connected Worker and integrate the technology into their daily operations, bringing sustainable benefits to performance improvement.

Harford Connected Worker

Harford Connected Worker encompasses the platform, interface and smart sensors that factories need to access real-time actionable data. All our devices, machines, and applications are connected seamlessly. Leaders and operators can have access to real-time insights into factory performance, process quality, and OEE on tablets and mobile devices. This comprehensive snapshot of performance enables the identification of production issues and the evaluation of performance, driving improvements towards operational excellence.

There is clearly a high cost associated with inefficiency, coupled with the real challenge posed by the lack of operator engagement. It’s time to make a change and adapt to technological advances. After all, no manufacturer wants to find their business on the list of insolvencies. If you are ready to explore the possibility of improving your manufacturing performance using Connected Worker, please reach out to us at info@harfordcontrol.com or give us a call on +44 (0)1225 764461.

Harford Connected Worker

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