What it's about
In this blog we’ll show you six reasons why you should eliminate traditional word processing applications from process documentation and how you can significantly increase productivity with specialized tools for creating and using digital and interactive work instructions.
Download the whitepaper: Work instruction 4.0
Workers who carry out their activities using Work Instruction 4.0 report enormous simplifications in process execution. Read in our whitepaper how the interactive work instruction reduces effort, makes audit processes simple and increases process safety.
Why documenting processes in word processing programs is a bad idea1. Because version chaos is a thing of the past once and for all.
Specialized software for the creation and use of digital work instructions enables automated versioning and thus not only archives all process documentation, but also ensures that your employees always have the latest version of the process description available. File names such as “_final_123_final_final_revised” are now definitely a thing of the past.
2. Because intuitive user operation is the be-all and end-all.
In process documentation, the focus is on the employee. Intuitive operation and simple user guidance are the most important elements in interactive work instructions. This applies to the creation of work instructions, checklists or test plans as well as to the use of these documents in the shopfloor. Process knowledge is probably the best guarded treasure of any company. Professionally prepared, the added value of this know-how increases and both experienced employees and unskilled workers benefit from digital step-by-step instructions. Leave the structure and layout to the specialized software and focus on the contents of the process documentation. From now on, annoying but necessary formatting work will not steal a minute of your working time anymore.
3. Because transparency finally prevails.
Functionalities for integrated rights management enable you to establish transparent and automatically controlled review processes for the created work instructions and thus shorten release cycles. It is therefore a walk in the park to see at a glance, which processes have already been released and for which a release confirmation is still pending.
4. Because you can integrate and intelligently manage a wide range of media.
A picture often says more than a thousand words. This applies in particular to work instructions or test plans in productions. Although you can insert images into documents from classic word processing applications, you quickly lose track of which images you have used, who took them and where they are stored. Specialized tools for the creation of interactive work instructions take up the media variety for the process description. In addition to images, you can integrate videos or entire PDF documents into the work instructions. Management and storage take place automatically so that you never lose control.
5. Because Industry 4.0 is more than digitalization.
In order to exploit the full potential offered by digitialsation, it is necessary to link a wide variety of production resources. This includes machines, employees and information. The latter for example includes operational process information for the assembly of products or the maintenance of plants, which in turn must be linked to production orders, for example from the Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERP system). The implementation of efficient processes requires specialized tools, because conventional word processing applications were developed for many purposes – but not to create, store and provide professional, digital work instructions.
6. Because interactive software is the future.
Say “Goodbye” to bulky folders, confusing stacks of paper and unidirectional communication. With specialized software for the creation and use of digital work instructions, checklists or testing plans, you not only provide your shopfloor employees with information, but also support them in logging your work processes. With just one click, each employee can interactively add required values and confirm processed check points directly – without computer expertise and, above all, without folders, confusing forms and ballpoint pens. With interactive software you kill at least two birds with one stone.
Creating work instructions with popular word processing applications is time-consuming and makes it difficult to maintain documents. Software solutions that can be used to create and manage work instructions digitally are a remedy. With the Operations1 software, you can quickly and easily get started on a small scale, convince yourself of the advantages of interactive work instructions and then easily scale them.
About the author
Moritz Stern is head of strategy and marketing at Operations1. Before joining Operations1, Moritz worked at Strategy&, PwC’s strategy consultancy. Here he advised clients from the operations environment around the globe on strategic issues. Previously, Moritz worked for Alstom Power, Merck KGaA and Arthur D. Little. Moritz holds a degree in industrial engineering (M. Sc.).
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