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Devoteam helps Duracell to build Industry 4.0

Duracell wants to fully rebuild the Belgian production site in Aarschot into a so-called Industry 4.0 factory by 2020. That should lead to an even more efficient production process. Duracell expects that this will save them hundreds of thousands of euros a year. Devoteam accompanies Duracell within this digital transformation process.

A production line that does not produce the required quality or stand still, means loss of production. To avoid this as far as possible, Duracell wants that each employee have the accurate information at the right time. If something goes wrong, then they should know right away where they can find the cause of the problem. The only way to achieve this is through a central platform where all the information comes together.

All information combined on one platform

Duracell asked the help of Devoteam as Digital Transformaker partner, and Ometa as innovation partner. First, they made a roadmap together. “The idea behind the roadmap is to build step by step a digital platform where all the data from the production site comes together in real time with information including production planning, maintenance and storage of the batteries,” said Arnold De Ploey, Digital Workplace Consultant at Devoteam. “The role of Ometa is very important to achieve this goal. This company offers a unique integration platform that allows business applications such as ERP systems and production systems can be linked to portal and Content Management Platforms such as Microsoft SharePoint. “That’s how all information on production planning, production quantities, drop-off, maintenance, safety and quality control, which formerly was manually processed at different places, will right now and automatically flow into SharePoint.

Accurate information at the right moment

Once they achieved this, the operation of the production teams at Duracell can be further digitized. “Computers and tablets will become the starting – and the end point in the daily operation of the workers. They get through screens the assigned tasks that they must perform. Their tasks are highlighted in red, it means that they have to perform those first. When completed, they mark their task as completed and it disappears from the screen. That will be processed automatically on SharePoint in the form of dashboards that visually displays the status of tasks and the KPIs. This is how we always have the latest information. ”

Predictive maintenance and quality management based on machine learning

After digitizing and the combining of all business information on one platform, Duracell also wants to speed up the process in the field of predictive maintenance and quality management. That is very important to reduce the production losses. “Sensors are getting cheaper, more versatile and easier to integrate into the production process. More and more  measuring points will constantly monitors the production process. Based on the sensor signals and through machine learning the transition will be made from reactive maintenance to preventative maintenance. In addition, it will ensure to manage the production quality much better.”