Digital Transformation: Where’s the Low Hanging Fruit?

Digital Transformation: Where’s the Low Hanging Fruit?

The very first question of any digital transformation should be, “where’s the low hanging fruit?” When you pick fruit from a tall apple tree, the low hanging apples are the easiest and quickest to grab. Similarly in an industrial setting, the low hanging fruit are the projects with the quickest and easiest routes to value.

When planning a digital transformation, you need to start by identifying the low hanging projects. These will give you small, but rapid success that will become the foundation of your transformation. They are low risk projects that can prove the value of digital transformation and get the rest of your company on board for something bigger. 

Low hanging fruit will vary from company to company, but there are three general areas that help to narrow it down. One option is to look for an easy project that will impact multiple areas of the business. The second option is to find outdated systems and attach digital add-ons to them. The third option is to find a plug and play solution that can install directly into your operations. 

Honda Improves Assembly, Traceability, and Procurement

Honda deployed RFID technology across its assembly line to improve quality and traceability of vehicle manufacturing. RFID tags enable assembly workers to easily scan a vehicle chassis to determine the required components, minimizing mistakes. As an added bonus, managers are provided with complete traceability of components moving through the facility. When a part is scrapped or inventories are low, procurement receives alerts that replenishment may be needed. RFID is a relatively low cost and simple digital transformation solution. Just like with Honda, it can provide incredible value to multiple areas in the company with just one simple project. 

A4 Systems Upgrades Outdated Sensors

A4 Systems created a device to upgrade 3G storm drain flow meters. A few cities had deployed flow meters in their storm drains to track flow rates around the city. All of the data was transmitted over a 3G network back to their database. But in recent years, 3G has become less and less available, thus many of these sensors required a worker to collect the data manually. A4 built an LTE compatible device to plug into the flow meters and replace the 3G modems. The project proved to be a significantly cheaper option than replacing the highly expensive flow meters all together. 

Saint Gobain Uses Plug and Play Solution

Saint Gobain implemented a plug and play software across its automotive glazing facility. The software allows them to connect numerous assets around the facility in order to grab production data across the entire manufacturing line. The company now has all of its production data in one single software so they can easily analyze and make data driven decisions. Choosing a software that is ready to use out-of-the-box gave Saint Gobain an easy project to build its digital transformation off of. 

 

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Digital transformation should always start with simple projects. Look for the opportunities to impact multiple areas of your company with one basic technology. Find the opportunities to upgrade older systems with add-ons. Or simply find a plug and play solution that fits your operation.