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Mining Solutions Company Increases Productivity with Black Box Digital Signage

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The Challenge

As a worldwide leader in high-productivity mining solutions, Joy Global's mission is to partner directly with customers and to make every customer a reference by helping them perform at world-class levels. For mining customers, this means keeping people from harm's way while achieving the highest production and lowest lifecycle cost. Effective site-wide communication is necessary to achieve this mission.

The company was spending an excessive amount of time and resources, with minimal success, to communicate real-time data driven decisions from management to shop floor, supervision to shop floor, and shop floor to shop floor (shift to shift/department to department). It was clear a better solution was necessary.

Before implementing facility-wide, real-time digital signage, Joy Global had numerous other manual solutions in place, which varied at each production site. For example, performance boards were used to communicate successes and opportunities daily with employees at all levels, but needed manual intervention for updating and had datasets that were, at best, 24 hours old. In another example, production schedules were manually printed and posted in work centers. These schedules were out of date as quickly as printed, and any updates required a resource- intensive manual reprint and repost.

The Solution

To help standardize communication across its sites, Joy Global implemented a Live Performance Management (LPM) process wherein a digital signage messaging system acted as a key element. The company chose Black Box as its digital signage solution for its LPM process because of prior success with Black Box for its Human Resource digital communication. The company planned to implement 120 iCOMPEL Q Series digital signage subscribers across 20 sites. These devices are sealed, fanless and quiet, making them an ideal solution in industrial environments.

Solving the communication problem will allow us to better serve our internal customers as product flows through our facilities, which in the end will improve the performance to our external customers.

Global Operational Excellence Core Team Leader at Joy Global

The Results

iCOMPEL's easy-to-use Web interface allowed the company to create, schedule, and manage messages site-wide from one location. The content management system integrated seamlessly with the company's active software programs—including SAP's Manufacturing Integration and Intelligence (MII) software used to pull, format, and display data from SAP, Kronos, SIMS, and Factory Wiz.
Project Manager of Marketing Communications Underground Mining Chuck Fickter said, "We liked the ease of installation and use of the interface."

The digital signage solution enabled the company to display its seven key manufacturing metrics-safety, quality, OTD, work order velocity, productivity, and 6S—in real time across multiple sites. More importantly, it allows decision makers across the company to make real-time, data-driven decisions that take performance to new levels. Real-time leading indicators shown through the system ensure that the decisions made are correct, positively influencing the seven key metrics throughout the day. Productivity and OTD have both improved in the facilities where LPM was implemented.

Global Manager of Manufacturing Systems Kauhi Adcock added, "The iCOMPEL system allows us to aggregate information from many sources and formats, enabling us to deliver actionable information where and when it is needed most. The powerful features along with excellent reliability makes the iCOMPEL digital signage a key part of our manufacturing technology toolkit."
Global Manager of Manufacturing Systems Kauhi Adcock added, "The iCOMPEL system allows us to aggregate information from many sources and formats, enabling us to deliver actionable information where and when it is needed most. The powerful features along with excellent reliability makes the iCOMPEL digital signage a key part of our manufacturing technology toolkit."

"In the past, when information was needed supervisors and group leaders needed to return to an office to research data for decision making. They now have the ability to quickly consult an LPM screen and provide answers on the spot. The outputs have also been designed so intuitively that in many cases the team members on the floor can make quick, sound decisions themselves. This is empowering to the team and frees up management's time. It has really changed the game in many of the applications thus far around the world," said Director of Operational Excellence Jim Woods.

Black Box was challenged with a very short timeline, which continued throughout the entire project implementation schedule. The first three sites were completed in two months, followed by an aggressive schedule to complete the remaining 17 sites in 34 weeks (one site every two weeks).

Global Operational Excellence Core Team Leader Sean Zyra stated, "This project in particular put Black Box in a short lead time and expedited state, to which they performed well and met our needs. To date, the company has seen a 3% improvement in productivity over each site's YTD baseline during justification. The Live Performance Management Team is expecting an improved on-time order closure as well. Improving on-time order closure throughout a process leads to improved, on-time delivery to our customer base."