Case Study Hawle
Clean drinking water – one of the most important resources in the world! Water flowing freely and abundantly from our taps is something we take for granted, just like the air we breathe. E. Hawle Armaturenwerke GmbH is a manufacturer of heavy-duty valves committed to providing products which ensure just that.
Best optimization results thanks to cronetwork
Holistic data acquisition
to delivery dates
with SAP & QM
MES, the central hub of the last 20 years
Its success story started back in 1948 with revolutionary pipe connections, manufactured for generations and used all over the world today. When it comes to its production process, Hawle has, for the last 20 years, placed its trust in a complete Manufacturing Execution System. One of the major benefits: a multitude of different production processes drawing upon the very same system!
„cronetwork MES is the centralized software system in relation to the scheduling, handling and improvement of all production processes. Just under 300 employees in almost every department use it virtually every day“, explains Thomas Riedler, Manager Technical Services of heavy-duty valve manufacturer Hawle. For 15 years, he has been involved in the partnership between his company and Industrie Informatik GmbH, spanning approximately two decades! “Our production is highly diversified. It ranges from mechanical metal processing to plastic injection molding. We need these to meet the extremely high quality demands we place on our products!“
A variety of production processes – one MES
This wide spectrum encompasses mechanical metal processing, surface finishing (blasting and powder coating), thermoplastic production, mechanical processing of plastic components, elastomer production and assembly as well as product testing. This eliminates the need for industry-specific, isolated solutions and guarantees an integrated view of all aspects of the production process. Thomas Riedler outlines: “Essentially, we use cronetwork plant and machine data collection for all types of data processing from all areas of production. We are talking both manual and automatic feedback operations, e.g. times, quantities, operation feedbacks for approx. 160 work centers, as well as machine stoppages, disruption reason entry, etc. for roughly the 50 most essential machines.”
For Thomas Riedler, the key to success isn’t about tackling highly complex tasks, but comprehensively and integrally utilizing the production software. This is where one of the cronetwork core modules comes in – the powerful, high-efficiency scheduling board solution. Specifically, this involves requirements in the form of production orders being transferred from SAP to the scheduling board, scheduled against finite capacities and then handed over to production, where they are processed by the individual teams. The ERP only resumes control once the completion feedback has been received. During order handling, cronetwork MES takes over and, as it were, dissolves the “Black box” between the production order and the completion feedback.
However, this high level of integration extends beyond the leading ERP. It is also evident in the area of quality assurance. Each slider and each shut-off element is subjected to a rigorous test cycle, processed with Babtec’s quality management solution. Work is currently ongoing to exchange the two systems, virtually in ‘real time’.
The Hawle indicator cockpit
The joint development of the areas of application spanning several years has rooted cronetwork MES deep in Hawle’s operative organization. Thomas Riedler explains: “Cronetwork has become our go-to system.“ The so-called “Hawle indicator cockpit” ensures a centralized view of the current production status. This master cockpit provides an operative, tactical production analysis, contrasting the strategic view (Qlik-Sense integration with cronetwork MES) and providing an analysis and overview tool for various company hierarchies. At department or production process level, systems, machine status and their OEE (data collection automatically via machine data and feedbacks) are visualized. A total number indicating the current department performance further shows the ratio between target personnel time on production orders and the actual personnel hours worked.
“Another aspect that is very important to us when evaluating our production processes is timeliness!“, Riedler continues: “Our Hawle cockpit indicates whether individual processes are within a target date. This allows us to intervene at short notice and take corrective measures, if necessary. So, if there are any delays in one of the production processes, by making the appropriate adjustments, there is every chance that these will not filter through to the customer.“
From worker through to management
The Hawle indicator cockpit and the added value it provides benefits everyone, from the shopfloor employees, the team and area managers through to management, although the degree of utilization is somewhat reduced at this level. The key performance indicators provided in connection with department efficiency, OEE and timeliness are an essential data source for any foreman and team leader, both in production and across the plants. “At the start of each week, we get a picture of the production process of the past seven days. Our team leaders and their employees then analyze the data. Owing to our experience and the high quality of the data, we can see straight away if everything is on target or if there are any deviations which require action. These meetings usually only take 15-30 minutes – their positive effect, however, is many times higher”, says Thomas Riedler, also praising the possibility to dive down deep into the data. The drill-down principle enables the analysis of processes down to individual feedback level.
The many benefits of this long-standing solution are also appreciated at management level! Siegfried Mrschtik-Gebetsroither is Head of SCM & Logistics and has been involved in the introduction of cronetwork MES: “Industrie Informatik has enabled Hawle to introduce an MES solution which provides us with the necessary transparency on the shopfloor to continuously reduce waste in our processes and make prompt, appropriate decisions in the Continuous Improvement Process.” He believes the broad application spectrum also plays a central role: “Full implementation of plant data collection, machine data collection, scheduling board, OEE analysis and material supply control enables us to schedule and control the entire shopfloor based on live data, and we can now digitalize data in combination with SAP. This newly gained data volume allows a virtually unlimited optimization/digitalization of our processes.”
Thomas Riedler also considers the unique release philosophy which Industrie Informatik offers to be a major aspect for a successful operation. New features are regularly made available in the form of extensions of the functional scope and technological advancements. These can be installed easily in just a few hours and generally in-house. What makes this so special: the release guarantee ensures that older functions will always be retained, even when skipping one or more update cycles. Riedler sees this as real investment protection: “The standard for all is not only created through customizations and new functions from other projects, but also through in-house developments! In my opinion, this ‘community concept’ represents genuine added value for all cronetwork users!”
Cronetwork MES has been the central hub for the production processes of E. Hawle Armaturenwerke GmbH for the last 20 years. The solution offers manifold benefits to a highly diversified production with a wide spectrum of processes, from metal processing to plastic injection molding. The system’s continuity ensures stability and lasting efficiency, with its everyday presence and added value creating a high degree of acceptance among the workforce. Comprehensive utilization of data collection and feedbacks by means of plant and machine data collection forms the basis of complete transparency through a master cockpit which is used throughout the entire company, providing all key data at a glance. The benefits are a reduction of machine downtimes and the option to initiate corrective measures at any time. Last but not least, cronetwork MES boasts extensive possibilities, culminating first and foremost in the flawless cooperation between SAP and the cronetwork production scheduling board.
Further projects in the areas of product traceability, batch collection and deep integration of the quality systems are already being implemented, and so, Hawle and Industrie Informatik will continue their joint path to success in the years to come.
photos: © E. Hawle Armaturenwerke GmbH
Heavy-duty valves, product solutions from the source to domestic connection
approx. 600 in Austria
plant data, machine data,
scheduling board, KPI/OEE, work center monitor,
PIDO, time & attendance, access control,
Qlik View Connector
“Full implementation of plant data collection, machine data collection, scheduling board, OEE analysis and material supply control enables us to schedule and control the entire shopfloor based on live data, and we can now digitalize data in combination with SAP.”