Despite the advances being made by technologies driving Industry 4.0, purchase managers, plant managers and quality inspectors are struggling to meet their KPIs and production commitments. Solutions based on IoT, Augmented Reality (AR) and Cloud are filtering into functions such as sales and R&D, enabling them to track products, the owners of the products and product usage to meet functional KPIs. But the truth for plant managers is that quality issues occur anywhere – between material shipping, inventorying, manufacturing and dispatching finished products. To quantify this, the cost of Quality contributes to 15 – 20 % of sales and high rejection percentage to an extent of 2% during Production due to manual & wrong quality inspection. Identifying the point at which quality issues impact production is crucial to triggering the appropriate remedial action. This process is currently slow and tedious, leading to inordinate delays. What purchase managers, plant managers and quality inspectors need is a real-time tool that provides exceptional Quality Insights.
At Wipro, we developed a Quality Insights application to address this quality problem faced before and during manufacturing. The application is integrated with backend SAP S/4HANA system along with Machine Learning and Image Analytics capabilities of SAP Intelligent Technologies services. Few interesting highlights include using digital count for taking stock of Inventory, Integrated GR and confirmation to supplier, an image analytics – Smart Digital check on the inbound quality and in-process component quality, iRRA to trigger the return process. All these actions help make the supply chain lean and reliable.
In most instances, the quality manager would take over at this point and decide on the course of action for the defective materials. Quality Insights goes one-step further. Its image checker uses the analytics capabilities of SAP cloud platform along with intelligent Robotic Process Automation (RPA) on the backend SAP S/4HANA to complete the return process of the defective batches.
This can be used across the Industry’s manufacturing scenarios. For e.g. an automobile manufacturer could use Quality Insights to examine components coming into its assembly line from various suppliers. The real-time application would not only reduce human dependency, but also reduce training costs, provide cognitive inputs to help override automated system decisions, drive increased productivity with better accuracy in rejection and faster commercial resolution with suppliers. Overall, manufacturers using Quality Insights can expect to boost sales due to accurate and highly reliable quality processes with reduction in faulty manufacturing. This is aside from the fact that the real-time process also provides accurate action to mitigate commercial impact from suppliers.