A leading manufacturer of trailers for the trucking industry is currently deploying cutting edge technology throughout every operational area in the enterprise. The goal is to increase operational efficiency by eliminating paper and empowering employees with mobile tablets to free them from manual paperwork.
The company has wide-reaching operations, including multiple manufacturing plants, warehouses, service centers, and sales offices. To help the company identify the right technology to transform its operational processes for greater efficiency, the executive management team turned to RFgen-certified partner, WhiteLight Group Inc., an applications solution provider specializing in helping large U.S. enterprises develop transformative technology strategies.
First, WhiteLight Group helped the company deploy a new JD Edwards EnterpriseOne ERP system, including CRM, Production Scheduling, and a configurator system. While putting the enterprise management components in place, WhiteLight Group worked with the company to automate its collection of data throughout the organization.
To automate data collection in the supply chain, WhiteLight Group recommended RFgen Mobile Foundations for Oracle’s JD Edwards. This suite of pre-written, pre-tested Oracle-validated data collection software solutions enables companies to benefit from real-time barcode data collection and roaming mobile applications.
RFgen is designed to optimize supply chains by driving higher efficiency in the warehouse, on the shop floor, and more. It dramatically increases productivity by supporting data collection on barcode scanners, tablets, and even voice-enabled headsets while maintaining data integrity and facilitating real-time information exchange between these devices and JD Edwards EnterpriseOne.
WhiteLight Group implemented the RFgen solution and used the RFgen Mobile Development Studio and the pre-built suite of JD Edwards mobile applications that come with it to develop custom apps for the company to automate quality assurance, service estimating, inventory management, purchase order processing and manufacturing.
The company now uses RFgen for mobile data collection on the manufacturing shop floor, in the warehouses, at the service centers and in the trailer sales offices. Deploying RFgen across the enterprise has empowered the company’s employees to:
Paperless Quality Assurance
Each trailer goes through a series of extensive quality checks during the production process. Prior to RFgen, quality assurance managers relied on multiple checklists and paper forms to manually record defects and pass that information to the right team members for remediation. Deployed on mobile tablets, RFgen has revolutionized the quality control process. RFgen helps quality managers quickly capture and record any problems. Later analysis of digital quality records can identify patterns of repetitive quality issues that can lead to process improvements over time.
At the service centers, drivers bring trailers in for repair. Employees will soon use RFgen to issue repair estimates to customers. Before RFgen, estimates were created and calculated on paper, then transposed to an email to the customer. In the future, RFgen will quickly generate estimates on mobile tablets. Estimators will scan a trailer’s VIN number, then go through a series of screens to evaluate the trailer to identify problem areas. Based on the repairs identified, RFgen will build the estimate, calculate the cost of services and parts, and create an email for the customer—all without requiring the estimator to return to a desk.
Seamless Capture of Labor Data
One of the primary reasons many manufacturers don’t collect labor data during production is that they don’t want employees to spend time logging in and out of each work order they touch. WhiteLight Group has designed a new labor tracking app using RFgen that enables an employee to simply log into his or her work center when reporting to the production floor. RFgen then automatically records the start and stop time as each work order passes through that work center. Now, the company has accurate labor analytics it can use for future cost estimating and production planning.
In the parts warehouse, RFgen is used to automate receiving, inventory transfers and issuing inventory to production or repair orders. RFgen supports full tracking and traceability down to the part or component level, so in the event of a recall, the company could quickly identify all affected trailers and customers.
Improved Data for Analysis
With RFgen, the company can collect and feed more data into JD Edwards. With its former paper-intensive processes, more data would have meant more paper—and greater expense.
RFgen made it easy (and inexpensive) to collect large amounts of information across the enterprise. With so much more information at their fingertips, managers will be able to make better decisions based on real-time data.