The need for optimization and to implement industry 4.0 concepts has never been greater than right now. The year 2020 was quite challenging for manufacturing as businesses had to deal with several issues stemming from the global pandemic. From workforce shortages and supply shortages to a downturn in the economy, 2020 was quite the hurdle. The need to automate, optimize, and become more efficient in all aspects of manufacturing became rather apparent.
Saying you need to optimize and actually implementing those changes effectively are quite different though. What should be optimized first? What exactly do we need to analyze? Too much data and irrelevant data can be as bad, if not worse, than not enough data. How can manufacturing really be agile?
Performing internal audits at each point in the manufacturing process is a great way to start — from bringing in the raw material to how it gets delivered to the shop floor, the efficiency of the production machines, the process of transferring finished goods to the warehouse, billing and receiving, quality control, staffing, training and customer service. Odds are, all these areas can be improved, but focusing on a few that can make the biggest impact first is key.
So how can LANSA help manufacturers become more efficient, more agile, and better optimized? Simple — by enabling IT departments to create applications critical to every aspect of manufacturing quickly and efficiently.
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Real-Time Data from Your Production Processes
Visual LANSA can create real-time applications that interface with your production machines’ PLCs via SQL or ASCII. This data can be stored on the IBM i, Windows servers, or the cloud. Real-time data at the fingertips of production supervisors or the production workers themselves means adjustments can be made before costly problems occur. Before quality checks and before a catastrophic failure, making adjustments in real-time means valuable production time and resources are not wasted. This data can be displayed on phones, tablets, or even monitors located near the machine where the machine operators can constantly assess them.
Better Warehouse Operations
Accurate warehouse data is vital to a company’s bottom line. Knowing exactly how much of a product is in stock and the exact warehouse location means less manual checking, better production planning, and a reduction in human error. The ability to quickly create applications that can run on the latest scanners is a major step in ensuring warehouse data is correct and up to date. You don’t need to be limited to an MC9090 and a 5250 emulator. You can also create progressive web applications that run when network connectivity is low or nonexistent, so warehouse data does not need to be kept manually, then added manually later.
Analytical Dashboards for Everyone
Create real-time dashboards for production, sales, and even the CFO to make decisions based on the most accurate data. Visual LANSA installs directly on the IBM i or Windows so you can access your data anywhere with an internet connection. You can even set different dashboards based upon the user login credentials. Combine data from different sources, SaaS platforms, CMMS, EHS, ERP, IBM i, and SQL into one easy-access dashboard as needed.
Streamline, Optimize, and Save
Running an IBM i doesn’t mean you can’t integrate the heart of your business with your industry 4.0 initiatives. In fact, it is easier than ever to include the IBM i in all your optimization and IT objectives. Visual LANSA can turn any developer into a full stack developer, creating the most intuitive web apps in a matter of weeks. Equip your IT department with the tools to quickly and efficiently complete the apps you need to meet your optimization and automation goals.
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