The influence of digital manufacturing continues to gain momentum at Boeing. As a part of our second century initiatives to accelerate productivity and growth, there is a deeper focus on how we are maximizing our digital capabilities to enable a more dynamic workforce and improve first-time quality during aircraft production.
This is an exciting time for growth across the industry as the idea of manufacturing excellence transforms into a concept that is more dependent on leveraging the right technologies at the right time and adopting a more holistic approach. Digital manufacturing is all about capturing those processes that leverage precision and build on our competency and expertise. What I find most fascinating about this topic is how quickly certain technologies are really putting the power into the hands of those who need it most in real-time–technicians and support teams working on the factory floor.
One major digital manufacturing capability that we are rapidly implementing is Production Analytics, which has proven to play a significant role in the way we better equip our employees to perform on a daily basis. Our production analytics capabilities integrate various legacy IT systems with new data visualization and predictive/ prescriptive analytics technologies, and are helping Boeing unlock efficiencies across our end-to-end value stream.With these new digital technologies, production analytics is helping our technicians and the teams that support them to:
• receive early warnings of potential part shortages and prescribe actions to the right team member to prevent them
• predict safety, quality, and cost performance
• assess in real-time job performance, manufacturing risks and disruption, and
• visualize manufacturing flow, bottlenecks, and machine performance
At Boeing we launched our first successful Google Glass pilot in 2016. Since then, we’ve invested more time in understanding the intricacies of this tool including how to best manage a virtual database of information.