FESTO

Reduce Costs Significantly with the Right Degree of Variety

 

“Through the automation of time-consuming, manual analyses we were able to systematically reduce unnecessary variants in a short space of time. This enabled us to make significant savings in purchasing and to target cost savings in the reduction of complexity. In addition, there are notable savings opportunities in production automation, the support for existing products, and especially in the development of new and innovative products.
The implementation of Soley Studio has already paid for itself in the first analysis. The process in Soley Studio can also be transferred to other product groups. This potential can now be raised in the next steps.”
Andreas Kisch (Advanced Product Development – Product Architecture, Festo AG & Co. KG)

Where is there unnecessary variety in the cables used?

Festo AG & Co. KG uses a great many different cables in its products. In the development of new products, it cannot always be clarified through a manual investigation and from a cost perspective, whether a cable used can be replaced by one that is already used and that satisfies similar criteria. Thus an unnecessary variety of cables arises, which should be reduced.
The aim of the investigation in Soley Studio was to find out which of the different cables fulfill the same requirements. By consolidating these, purchasing synergies can be targeted, as well as warehousing and maintenance savings.
Given the vast quantity of data the challenges of the analysis lay in the following points:

• Putting together and consolidating required data from different sources.
• Consideration of the whole product portfolio (~1.4 M data sets).
• Consideration of available related knowledge (parts lists, list of where parts are used).
• Expert knowledge formulated into dynamic, combinable rules.

In Soley Studio identifying unnecessary variety step by step

In order to create a consistent database for the evaluation, product information was taken from SAP, requirements and data sheets put together in Soley Studio.

The consolidated data provided the basis for extracting extensive evaluations. The successive procedures were divided into the following steps:

 

In panels of experts, Festo employees translated the following analysis steps into a set of rules and applied these to the data base. In the consolidation the following criteria were followed:

1. Find all components which are used to make a product and which come into direct contact with a raw material cable.
2. Then consider the technical qualities of the products and compare these with all raw material cables used, insofar as their material status is active.
3. Seek alternative classifications, so as to use as few raw material cables as possible. The conditions for this are the reduction of purchase costs, fulfilment of technical requirements (electrical, chemical and mechanical) and the coordination with possible concepts for fully automated manufacture of the products.

As a result, cables that will replace one another were put into groups. This grouping serves as the basis for decision-making, to reduce the unnecessary variety targeted. Through a transparent presentation, variation in qualities such as the size, shape and color, can be quickly visualized along with the volumes used.

With the help of Smart-Data-Tools Soley Studio new insights and degrees of variability were achieved in the configuration of the product portfolio. Questions, which until now had been too complex and extensive, can now be analyzed. Potential cost savings were discovered and the basis for future modular development was established.

Conclusion

With the help of Smart-Data-Tools Soley Studio new insights and degrees of variability were achieved in the configuration of the product portfolio. Questions, which until now had been too complex and extensive, can now be analyzed. Potential cost savings were discovered and the basis for future modular development was established.

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