Maturity of IT in Manufacturing

Even at the highest level of maturity IT and other critical aspects of the organization - the people, the processes and the structure - need to constantly improve.
(PresseBox) (Dresden, ) Recently we explored how the maturity level of an organization can be evaluated as a whole and then improved using a Manufacturing Maturity Model and following the Manufacturing Transformation Strategy.

We saw how manufacturing organizations can be ranked at a particular level of maturity, based on the evaluation of their processes, structure, personnel and most importantly their IT. We also saw how approaching improvement in all four critical aspects in a well-defined project based manner can help organizations become more mature and lean.

Today we will concentrate on the maturity of enterprise IT and define how IT needs to mature along with the organization’s other three pillars (people, processes & structure) to ensure that the end-goal of being a continually improving organization can be achieved.

1 - As in the case of organizations, enterprise IT at the very first level of maturity is ad hoc at best and almost non-existential, where data is collected and reported purely in paper based formats and analysis of the data is practically zero. At this level the operation is highly reactive in nature with no insight into the data collected, where improvements are triggered not by thorough analysis, but rather based on management impetus.

In this stage corporate IT - if it exists - is not even remotely connected to the plant’s operation and the process owners depend solely on their experience and past data to perform operation and tackle contingencies. Optimizing the operation and initiating any CI initiative seems far-fetched.

2 - The second level of IT maturity is when there is some sort of system for reporting and capturing data in place, which generally is achieved by the use of spread sheets. At this stage too, the organization and its operation are still very disconnected, as data being captured in the sheets needs further analysis and refining. With millions of transactions happening in every plant in a given day, there is only so much a spread sheet can capture, explore and analyze.

Even at the second stage of maturity, corporate IT is not truly contributing towards process optimization. Management decision making at this stage is still not perfectly analytical in nature, but the information captured through spreadsheets might help the process owners and top management realize the trends developing in their plants and key improvement areas can then be located.

Click to read about Level 3 to 5 and download a test report

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Critical Manufacturing Deutschland GmbH
Maria-Reiche-Str. 1
D-01109 Dresden
Tom Bednarz
Managing Director / Geschäftsführer

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