Gathering data on paper is still a daily practice for factory managers around the world. This process is time consuming and error prone. It also hinders the real-time analysis of manufacturing operations. Digital technology comes to the rescue. Explore 9 reasons to move toward paperless manufacturing.

It is that time again.

An issue occurs in production and it is up to you to find answers. Sure, you know where and how to begin, but that is in fact what frightens you the most. You can already feel the paper cuts in your fingers. Or the sentiment of despair after having spent an hour in a dingy room with no windows, surrounded by paper sheets and unmarked boxes.

Are you a manager? In our experience, this is not the case.

Only 6% of manufacturing companies go paperless.

In 2017, less than a third of North American CEOs described their IoT strategy well. Gartner CEO Survey 2020 shows they are catching up. 83% plan to increase investment in digital transformation. However, another study by Gartner in 2020 found a paradox. Almost 50% of organizations appear to have no metrics by which to measure digital success.

Therefore, in reality, the smart factory is still far away.  Europe shows a similar pattern. According to the PwC Europe 2020 survey, 91% of industries are investing in digital factories. However, the maturity level of digitization varies widely. Only 6% of companies describe their manufacturing sites as “fully digitalized”. 44% say some factory elements are already connected. 41% currently use digital only for offline applications.

As in North America, industry leaders in Europe recognize the tremendous potential of paperless manufacturing. According to PwC, he number of EU companies implementing digital technologies is set to double within the next 5 years. Only a small number of companies (9 percent) are not planning to move forward with digital transformation at all.

Too bad for them.

Why paperless production is crucial in Industry 4.0

Digital technology is not a nicetohave alternative to paperbased systems. It is a prerequisite for success in today`s manufacturing industry. Regulatory requirements for product traceability are becoming more stringent. Customers are increasingly demanding more flexible, customized products. Paper can no longer meet these changing needs. Best way?

Connect industrial data sources via MES, a modern production management system. Connecting machines and processes with
MES software offers several advantages. Best of all, Industry 4.0 enables companies to plan and control production processes in real time. This always increases efficiency, production flexibility and asset utilization. To maximize the benefits, MES requires integration with your ERP infrastructure. This allows companies to digitize their internal processes and optimize their supply chains.

9 benefits of paperless manufacturing

1. Increase overall process efficiency

​​Efficiency gains are in most cases the main reason for companies to invest in digital transformation. By connecting MES with processes and equipment, any industrial business can build a smart factory. Process data, both in real time and on a historical basis, are made accessible to anyone in the organisation. New data insights are leveraged to decrease defects, unplanned downtime and waste.
Eliminating manual data collection frees up workers’ total time for more rewarding work. Planners no longer spend time reviewing the progress of each order before planning the next shift. The time saved by mechanics on donkey work can now be used for more useful work. Continuous improvement initiatives or root cause analysis are just some of the options.

2. Comply with regulatory and client demands

Inevitably, paper processes lead to human errors and inaccuracies. At the same time, endtoend traceability and compliance have never been of greater importance for the production industry. Food & Beverage is an industry in which data accuracy is particularly crucial. Any safety risk to consumers or largescale product recalls should be avoided at all costs.
The benefit of going paperless in this context is obvious. Compliance required a lot of physical storage space and time required to store and retrieve paper records. Digital technology makes this process much more efficient and increases the level of compliance of your site. Digital technology also makes it quick and easy to implement new rules in plants.

3. Reduce waste and increase profitability.

For many manufacturing companies, waste is a major cause of profits and lost profits. Often quality systems rely on spreadsheets or paperwork guidelines. As a result, incorrect product specifications and manufacturing errors become commonplace. As a result, these companies produce a lot of scraps and consume huge resources and time. One of the main goals of the

paperless environment is to eliminate these errors. Individual product specifications and last-order changes are automatically applied by the MES platform. By improving product quality and reducing scrap rate, production companies can save a ton of costs on expensive reworks.

4. Track production progress in real time

Knowing which tasks need to be done when, as well as keeping track of production progress, is crucial to a fluent production. process. In a paperless factory, data on production progress and performance is automatically collected by the MES platform. Therefore, quantitative updates and activity recordings are essential. The role-playing screen displays upcoming tasks and allows operators to update their progress with one click. The implementation of

IIoT/MES allows managers and planning departments to receive and view the status of production orders, operators and processes in real time. This simplifies new order planning. Alternatively, you can see the current state of an object at a glance. Before, they had to send someone to the other side of the plant to collect, sort, and analyse a pile of paper sheets.

5. Optimise lead instances and shipping reliability

Your customers, too, count on to get hold of their orders quickly. No depend on how a lot of customization is concerned. Creating the cap potential to supply merchandise precisely on time, and shortening the general lead time, have to consequently be one in all your number one concerns. Going paperless allows you to shorten lead instances and convey greater merchandise with an equal group of workers and systems.
Paperless manufacturing similarly permits organizations to cite orders in a greater well-timed manner, and make accurate estimates on predicted shipping instances.

Creating a couple of prices at once? No difficulty because of a streamlined platform. Digital transformation is consequently now no longer best key to enhance lead instances, however additionally to to win greater paintings. At the give up of the day, this could make your manufacturing ground greater profitable.

6. Reduce gadget and system downtime

Unplanned downtime is a supply of frustration for any manufacturing manager. Every 2nd you aren’t production goods, you’re lacking out on enterprise revenue. Are your machines on standstill for lengthy intervals of time among manufacturing runs? Going paperless with the aid of using adopting MES era, will make sure the proper tooling is in area on time for every new order.

As stated earlier, collecting and analysing manufacturing statistics on paper is extraordinarily time-consuming. Being capable of reveal actual time statistics allows plant managers to make higher selections primarily based totally on correct actual time and ancient statistics. This will now no longer best result in a greater fluent manufacturing technique. It will even equate to a higher utilisation of system and machines, higher preservation and much less unplanned downtime. All beginning from day one after imposing the solution.

7. Improve stock planning & manufacturing scheduling

Knowing your manufacturing lead instances is vital. This allows you to are expecting while substances run out or while manufacturing property want to be replaced. In a paper environment, cycle time estimates will lack accuracy because of guide statistics collection. Digitising strategies will permit you estimate predicted shipping dates with precision, and examine bottlenecks to in addition lessen normal cycle instances.

MES and ERP statistics may be synchronised in actual time, so your stock and manufacturing time table is usually as much as date. ERP will mechanically calculate the predicted shipping instances, as properly the uncooked fabric availability for every order, and ship it to the MES. This way, you realize precisely while to buy uncooked substances and may alter the concern of ground orders.

8. Boost worker motivation and engagement

Paperless production might also additionally appear to cognizance on technologies. However, it’s far in reality aimed toward enhancing the paintings enjoy of employees. By imposing IIoT era, gadget operators are given the proper gear to plot their paintings higher and simplify their obligations primarily based totally on actual time insights. All this could enhance worker pride and facilitate worker productivity.

By empowering humans with the proper gear and casting off guide actions, they could cognizance on greater vital activities. As a result, operators sense greater concerned withinside the technique, and are inspired to take part withinside the increase of your enterprise.

9. Improve communique and collaboration

Paperless manufacturing encourages higher collaboration among the backoffice and the manufacturing facility ground. It creates a bridge among all enterprise departments linked with the manufacturing technique. People from backoffice can effortlessly speak last-minute or changed orders to the ground in actual time. This permits for greater operational flexibility and faster responsiveness.

Also, the fashion closer to far flung running has firmly expanded in latest years, multiplied with the aid of using COVID-19. According to Gartner,
with the aid of using 2024, 1/2 of of manufacturing facility paintings may be achieved remotely. Are you presently choosing the gear to assist your virtual transformation? Then the cappotential to plot and steer manufacturing remotely may be vital to make sure enterprise continuity – these days and withinside the future.

Is your enterprise suffering with paperless manufacturing?

The blessings of paperless production may appear crystal clear. Yet, many producers are nonetheless suffering to get rid of paper from the manufacturing facility ground. For a few companies, the transition from paper to virtual might also additionally appear a chunk daunting. Often there’s the notion that digitisation would require a whole device overhaul.

But in reality, the transition to paperless can begin with an unmarried technique.

Are you aiming to capture the blessings of paperless production? Then you should have the proper IT infrastructure in the area. Businesses that fail to automate their operations with scalable era run the hazard of being not able to navigate these days’ aggressive Industry 4. zero landscape – not to mention capitalize on increased opportunities.

Manufacturing Execution Software (MES) can assist with the aid of using casting off technique inefficiencies. The actual-time insights MES offers, allows higher enterprise selections, each withinside the brief and the lengthy run. Companies that placed their virtual tasks on hold? They hazard falling in the back of on competition who’re taking a greater proactive technique to virtual transformation.


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