Matt, what are you hearing from companies about sustainability? What’s changing?
Our customers are facing skyrocketing energy prices that are driving unfavourability in their operating budgets as well as their sustainability agendas. In some markets, this is to the point that business viability is in jeopardy.
Furthermore, regulations in the EU are forcing industrial companies to act quickly to comply with new environmental rules.
More than ever, manufacturers need to understand the tradeoffs and synergies inherent in their decisions, especially when adding sustainability factors to existing performance metrics. They need to understand their products' carbon intensity to meet climate commitments and carbon goals. The ability to attribute energy usage directly to products is a prerequisite for these calculations.
How is GE Digital helping to address these challenges?
To remain competitive, build resilience, and lower risk, manufacturers need software that provides more granular energy and utilities data, greater visibility, and insights they can act upon.
Software solutions are smart enablers for industrial companies on a digital transformation and lean sustainability journey.
Building on our interviews and customer successes, we focus sustainability innovation efforts on three key problems worth solving:
What are the steps that you recommend to customers?
First, our strategic workouts with customers are critical to guide steps that deliver the most value to meet individual sustainability goals. As general steps, we recommend:
Can you give us some examples?
Absolutely! Here are just a few:
Skjern Paper partners with Novotek, and they use our Proficy CSense analytics software to improve product quality and reduce waste. In fact, analyst firm IDC recognized Skjern Paper for its use of industrial analytics to improve quality and support its commitment to sustainability.
For background, paper plants have hundreds of PID control loops that can cause process variation and contribute to quality issues and waste, if not maintained in a healthy condition. At the same time, while Skjern Paper has extensive quality assurance systems, the team did not have many real-time ways to measure paper quality, making real-time quality control difficult. Operators would check quality samples for a whole reel of paper at the end of a production run, which involved a delayed lab analysis and the inability to adjust production earlier in the process.
With a goal of avoiding or reducing 5% of quality rejects, especially when switching between different products, Erik Møller, technical manager at Skjern Paper, took advantage of free consulting with a GE Digital AI and ML expert to jump start the analytics project.
After just six hours of consulting, Skjern Paper was able to gain insights and take the project to the next steps. “Decreasing scrap and chemical usage and increasing production capacity through CSense are all ways that we are helping the environment,” Møller explained.
Somfy is another great example of using digital transformation to support sustainability. The team is using GE Digital's Manufacturing Execution System (MES) software to reduce waste, as one example benefit. You can also see case studies on several other companies here.
Any final thoughts?
Digital transformation is a critical part of the journey to sustainability. We can develop smart factories that support sustainability goals by modernizing our technology infrastructure – connecting OT systems, collecting data, gaining visibility for action, and optimizing operations.
In combination with a lean culture, smart factory technology reduces waste, energy usage, chemical usage, and more.
You aren’t on this journey alone. GE can help with the full breadth of our proven sustainability solutions, our ability to deliver on key metrics, and our vast experience with our own manufacturing as well as co-innovation partnerships with industrial organizations around the world.
Listen to GE Digital leaders on the challenges facing manufacturers and how software, business analytics, and people can help them meet those challenges head on with sustainability and efficiency.
Take advantage of 6 free hours of analytics consulting to jump start your continuous improvement.
According to IndustryWeek research, 70% of companies want to learn more about analytics, but the big question is how to get started.
With industry-leading expertise in data science and analytics, GE Digital can help.
We’re offering 6 free hours of consulting to jump start your analytics program in conjunction with Proficy CSense, proven to support your sustainability agenda.
Reach manufacturing excellence through Industrial IoT insights and intelligence.
Powerful industrial time-series data collection for on-premise and cloud-based storage and analysis
Power your transition to digital with fully integrated software