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November 2015 • SMT Magazine 53 FeaTure INTervIeW CoNNeCTING THe eNTerPrISe Hannah: There are many factors that need to be considered as manufacturers evolve from the conceptual stage to becoming a truly connected enterprise. How much data collection and report- ing is already automated versus manual? What metrics do they want to capture that are not be- ing captured today or cannot be captured with their legacy system? How is the plant performing against key performance indicators (KPIs), as well as the competition? Is reporting standardized and contextualized, so it empowers operators to act on information quickly and clearly? Las Marias: From a production standpoint, how does automation benefit a company? Hannah: A great proof point is our own journey. At Rockwell Automation, we realized we could further increase our competitiveness by making changes and leveraging available IoT technologies. As a result, our inventory shrank from 120 days to 80 days; we lessened capital expenditures by 30% per year; we minimized supplier lead times by 50%; and we heightened our customer on-time-to-want from 82 to 98%. At the same time, we slashed our quality issues by over 50% to finally achieve annual produc- tivity gains of 4–5%. Las Marias: What can you say about the fu- ture of automation in the electronics manufactur- ing and assembly industry? Hannah: Competitive pressures, includ- ing globalization, are accelerating the need for operators to share more data seamlessly across the entire company. To excel, each manufacturer must carefully assess and plan their connected enterprise journey to capture the right intelligence and turn it into work- ing information capital. Technology enablers are burgeoning—IoT and the proliferation of smarter end points, big data and analyt- ics, virtualization, and mobility—and will facilitate the decades-long pursuit of the con- nected enterprise for manufacturers. In doing so, savvy companies will be able to harness more skillfully the most powerful element that most operators neglect today: their own information. Garnering this intangible asset is the key to understanding operational per- formance at the most granular level, so opera- tions can be optimized. Las Marias: thank you very much, mike. Hannah: Thank you, Stephen. SmT In a recent interview with I-connect007, Iso- la's interim president and ceo Jeff Mccreary dis- cussed the impetus for the recent personnel re- duction and plant closing that took place, mainly in the u.S. With a realignment towards the Asian market and improved plant utili- zation in the u.S., isola expects to become more internationally competitive and improve rev- enue. Mccreary explained that, with long-time president ray Sharpe stepping down followed by the reductions, many are probably wondering about the company's sta- bility. He stated that the company has remained profitable but has suffered revenue-wise in the past few years, due in part to a general market slump in asia. by improving on their manufac- turing utilization rate in the u.S. (savings in the millions) along with more focus on the asian market, Mccreary sees the company as highly competitive going forward. Mccreary also shared his bullish view on the electronics industry in general and on what the industry may expect from Isola going forward. In addition, he explained what the company is looking for in a new ceo, which should be an - nounced in the next few months. To read the entire interview click here. Interim CEO Jeff McCreary on Changes at Isola

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