Freedom to grow

MANAGEMENT OF SMART FACTORIES

With this title Carlos Llonis -CEO at Truck&Wheel Automotive– together with Rubén Pérez -CTO- developed his presentation at the Business Excellence Table organized by the Automotive Association of Navarra – ACAN on Tuesday, March 23. Specific table of Industry 4.0.

He began his speech with a short video presenting a fully digitized process at the Alabama plant. A proof that we are a global benchmark in the production and delivery in sequence of components for premium automotive brands. Headquartered in Pamplona, we develop our activity in Europe and America as Tier 1.

Since 2017, at TW Automotive we have launched one transoceanic smart plant per year in Mexico and the USA. In 2021 we have landed in Germany (Munich), as a Tier1 supplier of one of the main automotive manufacturing centers in the country.

WHAT SMART PLANTS DO, AND THE CORPORATE?

The TW Automotive smart organization concept is based on plants learning from themselves – self-managing -, adapting to their environment, developing talent and growing constantly.

A functional balance is found between centralization and decentralization: with more responsibility and less centralization, commitment, ingenious solutions and exceptional results increase.

In this context, the role of corporate is to contribute resources and unify approaches so that everything flows. Carlos Llonis pointed out three areas:

  • Financial: monitoring the P&L.
  • Quality: emphasizing customer satisfaction with demanding indexes such as the RPS, where we reach levels of excellence.
  • People. development of team involvement: increasing enthusiasm, establishing communication channels, promoting active listening, organizing events to bring teams together, prioritizing physical presence in the plants…

On the other hand, the corporate department gives power to the plant to make decisions on investments, purchases, human resources management and talent development, commercial actions with the customer, partnerships with startups, agreements with universities… The goal: to generate innovation in value in all processes.

WHAT IS THE ROLE OF OUR MANAGERS?

In our concept of intelligent organization, managers manage the balance:

– centralization + responsibility = sustainable results over time.

They are managers who avoid the short deadline, look for agility and flexibility in the organization and anticipate solutions. 

Management is divided into two lines of responsibility that are close but different:

Corporate leaders: develop people and capabilities, work standards and drive excellence.
Plant leaders: focus those people and their capabilities on the company’s priorities, create value and help satisfy the customer.

TECHNOLOGY

The TW Automotive organization concept entails a systemic perspective: everything is interconnected and whatever happens in one part influences the whole.

In this context, technology and digitalization form an inseparable part of the strategy.

Rubén Pérez developed the three main points on which an isolated and connected infrastructure is based. A structure in nodes, connected in the cloud, which allows the establishment of solid and agile communication channels between the head office and the plants.

  1.  Hyperconvergence.
    It has allowed us to speed up the speed of traditional backups by more than 70%, in addition to improving the performance of applications, freeing up storage and accelerating backup and restore functions.
  2.  Data traceability.
    We have different tools to capture data in real time from automatons and other sources, Business Intelligence tools that analyze and present the data to speed up decision making and dashboard of the calculation in « real » by line (availability, performance and quality).
  3. Data protection.
    Digitalization leads us to hybrid infrastructures. This opens the possibility of having the data in private or public clouds, which has repercussions on the lack of data control without the basic principles of security.
    The objective is to:
    • Ensure that the information is accessible only to those authorized.
    • Ensure that authorized users have access.
    • Guarantee the inviolability of the data (Blockchain).

Our CTO explained the different technologies applied in the organization and the complementary solutions they provide.

The event ended with a colloquium among the participants, mainly companies from the automotive sector. We thank the Automotive Association of Navarra for this initiative, valuing the sharing of experiences between companies in the sector.