Rio Tinto

Crédit photo : Le Quotidien

In our last blog about the true nature of the Smart Factory, I told you the story of Martin the mechanic. I would remind you that Martin is a talented young mechanic who, despite his dedication to his employer, had no choice but to leave his job. The latter did not offer him a stimulating challenge.

This week, in this new blog in the series, I will tell you the story of supervisor Yvon. This new example will show you from another angle that the intelligent factory is after all very humane.

Yvon began his career with his current employer early on. Initially, he started his work as a day labourer. He did this work for a few years. Then Yvon’s interest in another area of expertise came to a head: electricity. So he decided to go back to school to become an electrotechnician.

Yvon subsequently worked for several years as an electrotechnician specializing in automated systems. His expertise, his sense of hard work and positive attitude have earned him a solid reputation as a technical expert. Yvon’s leadership was noticed by his employer. After 12 years of loyal service, Yvon was offered a promotion. He was offered a position of Operations and Maintenance Supervisor. Yvon has always loved challenges. So he accepted the position after a very short period of reflection.

As is often the case with technical experts, Yvon has always felt a strong need to do his job well in every detail. He mistakenly believed that this could be the case with his new position. Why wrongly, will you ask me? Quite simply because his employer did not provide him with the right tools to be effective.

This is what a typical Yvon supervisor day looked like:

8h00-10h00: Team meeting and safety tour? 🙂
10h00-11h45: re-entering accident and operation reports? 🙁
11h45-12h30: dinner 🙂
12h30-14h30: meeting of projects? 🙂
14h30-15h30: research into the causes of production stoppage? 🙁
15h30-16h00: floor round? 🙂

All this by ensuring a continuous monitoring of the operation historians on his computer screen?

Do you see Yvon’s problem? First of all, every morning, he lost an hour and 45 minutes to re-enter information in the company’s management software. Then he would lose a good hour every afternoon chasing after the causes of production stoppage. He often had to travel here and there to discuss with each person who had a piece of information on this subject. And last but not least, he had to monitor the operating metrics to ensure that they complied with current standards. He even had to plan his manpower for the next day at home at night because he did not have enough time during his regular working hours.

Gradually, Yvon developed the feeling of being overwhelmed. The short amount of time he was able to spend on the floor with the workers meant that he gradually lost his confidence. Yvon’s boss started blaming him for his work as a supervisor not being as satisfying as before.

After a year of this unnecessary strain, Yvon cracked and decided to resign from his supervisory position. He’s got his tools back.
Since then, things have improved at Yvon’s employer:

1. Non-compliance alerts have been set up on production historians. Supervisors no longer have to constantly monitor operating metrics. They are now simply notified by SMS or email when something goes wrong.

2. Mobile forms have been set up for both operational and management positions. In this way, operators record downtime and associated causes on their tablet. This information is directly transmitted to the operational management systems. Supervisors on their side no longer have to re-enter any information. They record directly on their tablet all the data to be recorded, in the case of accident analyses for example.

3.An information-sharing system has been put in place within the organization. In this way, information flows more freely and transparently.

As a result, 3 of the simplest concepts of Industry 4.0 have succeeded in changing the working climate in this company. Now, supervisors have time to devote to their primary task of managing operations and maintenance. The employees, on the other hand, are delighted that their coach is more present on the floor with them. In addition, the free flow of information now promotes a healthy working environment.
The correct use of technology has made Yvon’s workplace much more HUMAN!

Do you recognize yourself in Yvon’s story? Do you have a “Yvon” in your entourage? Feel free to share this post on your social networks or directly by email to the managers of your team!

You want to help your “Yvons” before they drop out? Contact us HERE!

Thank you !

                 See part 1 HERE

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