KCF Technologies Blog

One successful strategy to implement the Internet-of-Things in your factory

By Jeremy Frank        
Start small and one machine at a time

When I asked about his motivation for a vibration monitoring program, a director of maintenance and reliability within the automotive industry summed it up nicely: “You can’t manage what you can’t measure.”

What he means is that PdM managers are sometimes asked to do the impossible. Prevent failures, decrease downtime and keep our factories safe as if we were psychics. But we’re engineers, not psychics, and we need data and scientific methods to be successful.
So this director has decided to implement and grow a PdM program using vibration monitoring in his factory this year. But here’s the kicker – he, like countless other companies, must do so with limited manpower, limited budgets and limited expertise. Sounds like a daunting task, right? The good news is he did his homework and it led him to the Internet-of-Things (IoT).

The same “smarts” that brought Fitbits to our wrist and GPS to our vehicles will bring safety and reliability to our manufacturing sector. Wireless technology is no longer limited to your TV and your smartphone – it’s coming fast to the Industrial World too.

And the result? Fewer breakdowns, safer work environments and some peace of mind.

This director’s strategy is essential to this wave of change – he’s taking it one small step at a time. His dedication, along with others like him, to uncover why each machine fails one-by-one gives him a mini-win while building the momentum he needs to gain the support of his superiors.

Last year, KCF installed its 2,000th sensor but it’s the PdM managers who are doing the hard work of carrying American factories into the 21st Century.

Through these mini-experiments and mini-wins, maintenance and reliability managers are spreading the IoT throughout the country. It may not sweep the nation overnight, but it’s a steady drumbeat of change and a clear vision of the future.

What kind of strategies do you implement to roll out the IoT in your factory?

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