Effective Alerting in Manufacturing Companies – ASK Poland story

ASK Poland was founded in 1997 after more than 30 years of ASK’s existence in Italy as a manufacturer of loudspeakers and electronics for the automotive industry. The company currently employs nearly 900 people in Poland. ASK also operates in Germany, Tunisia, Brazil and China. The Polish branch – ASK Poland, based in Bielsko-Biala, specializes in the production of audio equipment and accessories for the automotive industry. Its offerings include speakers, audio systems, amplifiers and antennas, among others.

To continuously monitor the production lines, ASK Poland relies on the Golem MES system, developed by PPHU Neuron Wojciech Mazurek. This comprehensive system meticulously tracks crucial parameters like machine downtime, productivity, and setup time, ensuring that any deviations are promptly addressed by automation engineers or supervisors. Fast and reliable communication is at the heart of this operation, allowing engineers to minimize disruptions and maintain high production quality.

The Challenge: Streamlining Communication on the Production Floor

For many years, ASK Poland has been refining ways to communicate with engineers about the status of production lines. After the introduction of the Golem MES system, notifications of machine breakdowns and critical changes were sent via e-mail to automation engineers. It quickly became apparent that this method was unreliable; messages were read late because engineers worked on the factory floor – away from their desks.

The need for immediate and effective communication was obvious, given that a finished product leaves the production line every 6 seconds. For this reason, ASK Poland’s requirement for rapid response from engineers necessitated the need to revamp the emergency communication system.

Mr. Ireneusz Rodak, Maintenance Engineer at ASK Poland noted: “Which automation engineer reads e-mails when he is busy repairing a machine on another line? He simply doesn’t have time for that.”

Introducing Quick SMS Alerts on Production Lines

To bridge the communication gap and reach engineers wherever they may be on the production lines, ASK Poland initiated a project to modernize their communication methods. They sought a solution that could seamlessly integrate with their existing email notification system and ideally reach engineers through their smartphones, devices they always carried. This quest led them to the SMS/MMS SMSEagle hardware SMS gateway, a EU-manufactured solution which can be used as a SMS notification system in factories and production lines, with feature allowing converting email messages into SMS alerts. This unique feature ensured that the same engineers who received email notifications could also access crucial information through SMS alerts right on the production lines.

Opting for the NXS-9750 3G device due to its consistent performance, high throughput for sending SMS messages, and ease of integration, Ireneusz Rodak noted, “Since integrating the SMSEagle Hardware SMS Gateway in August 2019, it has become the cornerstone of our communications on the production floor.”

Precision in SMS Alert Distribution in ASK Factory

The SMSEagle Hardware SMS Gateway has brought structure and hierarchy to communication on the shop floor. Production line workers can now directly communicate problems to their leaders through SMS messages. This system offers flexibility, allowing leaders to change their work location while still receiving calls from workers on the production lines they supervise. Moreover, it can transmit information about machine failures to automakers without any limitations. Currently, 301 machines are part of the factory SMS notification system, but the system’s scalability renders the number almost irrelevant. Workers are automatically deactivated at the end of their shift, and notifications are dispatched only when they are logged into the system.

Golem MES also features an automatic alert system, proficient at independently sending SMS notifications to acousticians or automation engineers responsible for a particular production line when an anomaly is detected.

Eng Rodak emphasized: “The system ensures that whether it is a problem reported manually by line workers or automatically detected by Golem MES, we will immediately notify the right people.

Fine-Tuning Critical Information: Customizing SMS alerts for maximum efficiency

The SMSEagle Hardware SMS Gateway empowers ASK Poland to condense email content into a short SMS format. The SMS message commences with the production line’s name, followed by the machine’s name or the worker’s position. This approach enables automation engineers to swiftly ascertain the priority level and the location of the issue on the production lines. This flexibility proves especially valuable when engineers receive notifications on smartwatches. The watch’s vibration signifies that an important message awaits their attention.

Collaborating with SMSEagle’s IT team, ASK Poland customized the Email to SMS Poller to guarantee that alerts deliver the most essential data to their engineers.

A Transformative Communication Experience: The impact of SMS notifications on production lines.

The adoption of the SMSEagle Hardware SMS Gateway on production lines, by ASK Poland has revolutionized their communication landscape. This versatile device adeptly addresses various communication challenges, underscoring its adaptability through customizable software. The technical support provided by the SMSEagle team garnered praise from Ireneusz Rodak, who lauded their rapid responses and effective solutions.

Looking Ahead: Future plans and the broader applications of the SMSEagle gateway.

Regarding future plans, ASK Poland envisions expanding the notification system to encompass more production lines, including semi-automatic ones. Additionally, they contemplate employing the SMSEagle Hardware SMS Gateway device for network monitoring, a task within the purview of their ICT team. This outlook promises a bright future with a more extensive array of applications for the SMS/MMS SMSEagle gateway in manufacturing and production management.

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