A cake mix supplier has 12 hours to fill a 15,000-bag production order for a new customer. During the seventh hour, the filling machine shuts down with no warning. The machine operator attempts to troubleshoot and diagnose the problem but is unable to do so. After consulting with other employees and making a call to the equipment manufacturer’s service team, the supplier still does not have an accurate diagnosis. The filling machine service team is four states away and an in-person service call is the only option. Losing a new customer, before the first order is complete, is now a distinct possibility.
Rewind to the same scenario, but the supplier now has a small tablet device that connects him to live help almost instantaneously. Production is delayed only minutes. The job is done and the new customer is happy. This result is made possible through the technological innovation of the mobile service device, which takes troubleshooting, monitoring and maintaining to new heights.
A few years ago it would have sounded like a scene from a science fiction movie. Today, it’s becoming a best practice in the filling industry. New mobile technology allows the cake mix supplier to video conference with the equipment manufacturer while standing in front of the inoperable equipment. By using a small tablet device, equipped with a camera and linked directly to software in the filling machine, the plant operator can show the service team the exact problem while monitoring operational data. The technician can troubleshoot and then explain to the operator what needs to be done to get the machine back up and running. A process that went from a potential for days of downtime is transformed to minutes.