Jaemin Park had great plans for his job-shop AutoLink. Then the day-to-day business caught up with the South Korean company founder. Now he is taking off again after moving to a new production and a TRUMPF Smart Factory consultation.
Achieving goals with transparency
The more orders that came into AutoLink, the more thwarted the job-shop became by its internal processes. A lack of transparency concerning material inventory and machine utilisation led to long search and waiting times, restricting productivity. Jaemin Park had an idea what was causing this: "In the beginning, I was entirely focused on developing my machine fleet and gaining new customers. I took my eye off the processes. That's why, when I heard about TRUMPF Smart Factory Consulting, I hoped that a consultation with industry experts would be able to help me focus on my original objectives."
The factory design consultation was a real success. The experience of the Smart Factory consultants in terms of process flow, lean management and automation really inspired us to constantly review our processes in a critical light.
In July 2019, the TRUMPF Smart Factory Consultants from Ditzingen and their colleagues from TRUMPF Korea started to carefully examine AutoLink's production. They discovered optimisation potential in the production sequences and developed recommended customer-specific action points for AutoLink. The objective: increase the productivity at AutoLink and improve delivery reliability with transparent and ideally coordinated production processes. To do so, they needed to ensure a precise overview of the machine utilisation and the material inventory at all times. Park says, "We tested various machine monitoring solutions with the consultants and decided to introduce the TruTops Monitor. This condition monitoring system records and analyses machine data automatically." This means that every time there is machine downtime, it is possible to analyse if it was caused by a machine fault, or a different reason – for example, a sluggish workflow as material was not in the machine at the right time.
When moving into a new production hall, the TRUMPF Smart Factory Consultants supported AutoLink in replanning the production from scratch. A new, process-oriented hall layout was designed to assist the optimised processes from the very beginning. New process standards were created based on lean management method 5S. So-called shop floor markings now indicate zones where staff are not allowed to store materials, among other things. This ensures that the colleagues can reach the machines quickly at all times. As well as the existing machines, the consultants also included the new laser tube-cutting machine TruLaser Tube 7000 in the plans. This machine really distinguishes AutoLink from the competition in South Korea. The KPIs determined by the TruTops Monitor form the basis of the shop floor meetings at AutoLink, which are now held on a daily basis. Park says, "The transparency created by TruTops Monitor and the many small and large solutions, developed in data-based shop floor management, have already increased our productivity by 30 per cent."
With the TruBend 5170, Park now has a second bending machine connected to the TruTops Monitor. The introduction of additional software solutions should make further indirect processes more transparent during the next step. He sums it up: "You cannot develop a Smart Factory overnight. You have to be bold, keep trying out new things, and never lose sight of your own goals, even in the day-to-day business. My goal is to build a small but hard-hitting and future-oriented company. The Smart Factory Consultants have given me strategies to do this. I will therefore continue to rely on their full support."