Doosan Infracore has increased its competitive edge by using MES as the main production output management system. It has been developing an extra peripheral system for the eventuality that a new management rule and standard become established. Fast-forwarding
to 2012, the company made an important decision to upgrade the competitiveness of its production bases scattered across the world. The thinking was that by undertaking such an upgrade, the productivity achieved at the main head office would also be achieved
at local offices all over the world, giving Doosan Infracore a truly advantageous position in the global market, particularly in the Chinese market. As the basis of its new MES, Doosan Infracore adopted LG CNS’s ezMES, which is based on Microsoft DiRA and
server platform. The strategy was to first implement its own next-generation MES for the new production line located in its main office of construction equipment division in Incheon. The next step was to expand the use of this new MES to its production bases
around the world in order to bring about innovations in operation, management, quality and price systems. Next-generation MES is now installed in the main office in Incheon and in its branch office in China. Importantly, it is also used in other offices, including
in Gusan and in the one in Brazil. Doosan Infracore plans to integrate MES data in the course of standardizing the global MES environment to thereby improve the visibility of data across the entire company-wide production output, shipment and operation ratio.
||The old MES used to send data from the production base to a higher-level system such as ERP, but this Microsoft DiRA-based LG CNS ezMES serves as a bridge between facilities and systems, meaning data can be exchanged in real-time automatically.
Plus, at the new production line in Incheon main office, Customer Service System and Human Resources systems are now connected to MES and ERP. This is allowing data to flow through these systems seamlessly
| Kang Geunwoo
Head of PI Team
Doosan Infracore has production bases in Korea, China, Norway, Belgium, Czech Republic, France and the United States, all of which deliver to local customers the construction equipment, machine tools and engines they each manufacture. Its aim is to bring
about shop-floor innovations in operation, management, quality and prime cost. In practical terms, this is seeing the company expand the roll-out of its next-generation Manufacturing Execution System (MES) to production bases around the world. As to the business
case for this project, the crux of it lies in the necessity for strengthening the quality, performance and marketability of products based on the exact needs of local customers in order to gather momentum for its growth in overseas markets.
Doosan Infracore has pushed ahead with the market-specific strategies. In the North American and European markets, the company promoted cross selling between its own products and those of Bobcat, its subsidiary, to strengthen its brand power. By contrast,
in the Chinese market, it implemented a strategy to develop and advance customized products. The company has also established an excavator factory in Brazil. Likewise, Doosan Infracore is out to win part of emerging markets and thus safeguard its position
in global markets. To back up such market-specific strategies, shop-floor innovations in operation, management, quality and prime cost were required. It’s on this basis that the next-generation MES project was put forward.
The company-wide MES project in fact started with the development of a next-generation system for the construction equipment division back in 2012. The project was to reform the 7-year old system according to new facilities and management style along new
production lines in the main office of the construction equipment division in Incheon. The idea was to make use of this system in other production lines and factories.
The next-generation MES was first planned for both new and old production lines in the main office of Incheon, but Doosan Infracore had to be careful in choosing MES solution given that its ultimate goal was to bring about innovations in the entire company-wide
production environment. The company focused on flexibility in optimization and ease of maintenance and operation. Their reasoning was simple: to avoid the costly process of trial and error. In general, global manufacturing companies have their employees from
the headquarters develop a system that should be implemented in local branches, which is the case with MES. Unfortunately, though, such situations lead to the system being not always operated at its optimum, given that those who actually developed the system
are usually posted elsewhere, or else the headquarters finds itself unable to take the appropriate action upon the request from the local branch. However, Doosan Infracore considered such potential problems and that’s why it chose to adopt ezMES, part of LG
CNS’s Smart Factory solution.
MES tends to lose its advantages when facilities in the factory and software controlling those facilities do not work well together. Plus, it is not easy to get the most out of MES in different production environments, given that there are so many variables
which can be mis-aligned, including product, quantity and location. In this respect, ezMES was best suited to accept different conditions and optimize the standardized MES for each factory according to that factory’s particular circumstances.
The main feature of ezMES is that it can easily and quickly implement business logic according to different production conditions with LG CNS’s work flow engine, BizActor. It is also able to minimize the need for customizing and leveraging the repository
of optimal models for each production base with industry-specific business process and standardized GUI. In short, it can accept different conditions and, at the same time, implement standardization. As ezMES not only complies with the international MES standards
required by ISA-95 and MESA, but is also based on the DiRA Framework built by Microsoft’s many partners engaged in manufacturing, this solution is proven to be effective in improving operation, management, quality and price competitiveness as an integrated,
standardized platform, even when rolled out under varying local conditions.
With ezMES, Doosan Infracore started building MES to replace it with the system used for both new and old production lines in the main office of the construction equipment division in Incheon. What Doosan Infracore with the next-generation MES was a total
sea-change when compared to the old system. Whereas the old MES was mainly used for ‘production output management’, this new MES focused more on ‘quality assurance’. Plus, the old MES was managed in a way that the responsible person input the output data into
the system, which means that quality-related data was recorded manually, rather than using MES. This issue of extra-labor was another problem Doosan Infracore aimed to solve with the next-generation MES. With increasingly fierce competition for quality in
the market, the company set a goal with this new MES project of solving any possible problems before the product is shipped and delivered to customers. With this goal, Doosan Infracore implemented business logic that included the traceability management in
all manufacturing tasks. The company aimed to not limit the quality assurance to manufacturing process, but involve it in logistics and customer service. As a result, all kinds of data created in MES, including production plan, output, quality status, record
tracking and monitoring, can now be linked to ERP and the customer service system as well.
With the implementation of the next-generation MES for new and old production lines in its main office in Incheon, Doosan Infracore carried forward its MES replacement in its Chinese branch. The MES that is to be implemented in the Chinese branch was in
fact modeled on the MES promoted in the company’s main office in Incheon. Taking responsibility for MES development, Doosan Corporation Information & Communication team designed the new system in line with the benchmark set with MES in the main office of the
construction equipment division in Incheon. The Chinese branch has KPI (Key Performance Indicators) and processes that are different from those in the domestic production base. There is also a business need to trace increasing numbers of parts, which is caused
by the frequent quality issues that arise. When faced with this issue, ezMES was able to flexibly take on board such different requirements.
Increase the competitiveness of factories
Doosan Infracore’s next-generation MES is expected to turn the way of working in the manufacturing field on its head. In particular, on-site workers, engineers and quality managers will find drastically less amounts of manual-documentation work they have
to do. In the past, for example, they had to gather and document all data sent from the production bases. In other words, they had to handwrite the standard document and input execution results into the system one by one. However, data processing has now become
fully automated with the introduction of the new next-generation MES. “The old MES used to send data from the production base to a higher-level system such as ERP, but this Microsoft DiRA-based LG CNS ezMES serves as a bridge between facilities and systems,
meaning data can be exchanged in real-time automatically. Plus, at the new production line in Incheon main office, customer service system and human resources systems are now connected to MES and ERP. This is allowing data to flow through these systems seamlessly”,
said Kang Geunwoo, Head of PI Team at Doosan Infracore.
Something similar happened to the factory in China. “Lack of system capability, in contrast to high levels of production management, actually resulted in an increase in manual work, which meant that the office was simply filling up with documents. With the
integration of a separately developed and managed MES, status board, car dispatching and other management systems into this new singular MES, outdated and inefficient tasks were simply removed. In one fell swoop, the manufacturing process has become facilitated”,
said Kim Moohyun, Deputy Head of SI Team, Doosan Corporation Information & Communication.
Spread of the best practice
The next-generation MES being introduced to Doosan Infracore branches around the world is modeled after the Best Practice rolled-out in the main office of the construction equipment division in Incheon. This is the model for the MES now being implemented
and optimized in local branches according to production base-specific management items and standards. In the process, Doosan Infracore is leveraging the ezMES being developed using DiRA, Microsoft’s server platform and development language. “ezMES is designed
to help users extract the desired data without any extra development. It is also highly customizable as features can be simply added to the flow chart to implement business logic. More importantly, you don’t even need any special knowledge about the system
to run and maintain the system, meaning anyone can do it”, said Kim Moohyun, Deputy Head.
In addition, Doosan Infracore applies not only the system, but also the innovative process to its many branch offices as the best practice. “An example of this application is the standard RFID system with the traceability parts management in Gusan branch
and one in China. Parts used in the production site are the same, but marked with different barcodes depending on their destination as each factory has a different barcode system. The key point is that the shipment and supply of parts has been made efficient
through RFID standardization”, said Kim Moohyun, Deputy Head.
Grasp the current status of production
Doosan Infracore plans to expand the use of the next-generation MES to its main production bases around the world starting 2013. The worldwide standardization and upgrade will allow the company to gradually integrate data in its future projects. Its plan
is to implement a system capable of monitoring and analyzing MES data from worldwide production bases in the construction equipment division. It will then send the refined data related to production, equipment, quality and materials through EIS in order to
allow top management to easily understand production output, shipment and operation ratio of production bases scattered around the world. Doosan Infracore expects its next project which sees an integrated BI implemented to go smoothly precisely because the
next-generation MES will already be placed in each production base and built on ezMES with Microsoft SQL Server-based database.
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