LABOR TRACKING CASE STUDY: Airborne Systems
Addressing the Labor Tracking Challenge
Airborne Systems is the world’s most trusted resource for parachute design and manufacturing. With the expertise of highly skilled engineers, craftsmen and aerospace and defense professionals, they have a foundation of nearly 100 years of designing, developing and fabricating a diverse range of products for the U.S. Department of Defense (Army, Air Force, Navy, Marines and Coast Guard) and their international allies. Due to the nature of their business it is critical that Airborne effectively track labor throughout their manufacturing process. However, they were using manual time and job cards that were then manually captured in spreadsheets by back-office staff. The process was inefficient, slow, and cumbersome and resulted in dated information available in their SYSPRO ERP software. It became clear to Airborne that this system needed to be improved.
Airborne Systems required an automated solution to track over 180 employees in California and 100 employees in New Jersey in real time. SHEA Global, Airborne System’s technology consultant, suggested TransLution™ as they knew that the TransLution™ Labor Tracking Module would provide all the required functionality. The TransLution™ implementation team worked closely with SHEA Global and Airborne to implement the system and do the necessary integration with SYSPRO.
TransLution™ Software seamlessly manages labor records, writing actual labor usage to SYSPRO. Reports and Dashboards are readily available for Managers to have full visibility of staff operations and the jobs they are working. The system improves effective management by automating processing, publishing and email distribution of labor reports on a schedule for internal management.
Airborne wanted to provide mobile devices to each of the production staff to enable them to use the same devices for distribution of work instructions and other staff communications. TransLution™ supports operation on tablets using Android which allowed Airborne to deploy 7” and 10” tablets with rugged cases to staff for this purpose at a very reasonable cost.
One of the challenges at Airborne is that many of the production staff are first generation immigrants for whom English is a second language. Some were not experienced using technology at work on mobile devices. Working with the Airborne team, the process for recording labor was reduced to a series of very simple steps that enabled the production staff to adapt the system quickly.
With just four options from which to choose on the Android tablet screens, the process is simple, and users quickly learned how to Start and Stop Production Time, Log Non-Productive Time and Log various Job-related data. Workers review and confirm their records at the end of a shift and submit them electronically to their supervisor for approval. Supervisors then review and approve or reject records – rejected records are sent back to the user, with reject reasons, to be corrected by the workers. Supervisor approved records are posted to SYSPRO immediately as they are accepted.
In the event the regular Supervisor is not present, the records may be approved by an Alternate. The system ensures that there are no unposted labor records as the users are not allowed to start logging time for their current day if their prior day’s records are not submitted for approval. A button for Manual records was added for instances when the user was not able to capture time live. Reports clearly show which records have been entered manually for audit purposes.
Visibility on the Floor
One of the dashboards accessible to the Supervisors is the “Team Member Status”. This gives the supervisor a view of their entire team at a glance so they know what jobs they are currently working on. This clearly shows idle members who can now be assigned to other jobs.
TransLution™ assists management in identifying and rewarding top performers, as well as addressing road blocks to improve workflow or slow performance.
The Finance department are thrilled that they no longer have to manually capture heaps of labor records and job labor is posted as soon as the records are reviewed and submitted. Time that was once spent recording and checking labor data manually can now be applied to reviewing results or looking at dashboards to view critical data like which users were using manual entries too often, which jobs took longer than projected and they are able to adjust the workforce to get better results.
The Next Phase
Now that the California plant has successfully implemented TransLution™, the next phase of the project is to roll out in the New Jersey plant. The New Jersey staff were in California for the training on TransLution, so they are aware of TransLution™ and are looking forward to their implementation planned for spring/summer of 2019.
Airborne plans to implement other TransLution™ modules with the aim to improve and streamline processes related to materials management on the production floor and in the warehouse. TransLution™ also offers a Quality Control System that may help Airborne to deliver on its mission of Superior Quality and technology-leading innovation as their contribution to the success of their customers.
About Airborne Systems
Airborne Systems is the world’s most trusted resource for parachute design and manufacturing. We have a foundation of nearly 100 years of designing, developing, and fabricating parachutes. With the expertise of highly skilled engineers, craftsmen, and aerospace and defense professionals, we have gone beyond our company’s original founding principle of landing aviators safely, to using advanced technology to develop a diverse range of products for all kinds of applications and missions. Our company creates and manufactures best-in-class parachutes for the military; GPS precision guided cargo delivery systems; low cost cargo delivery parachutes; parachute releases; personnel and cargo systems; rescue and survival equipment; space and air vehicle recovery systems; and deceleration systems for high-performance aircrafts.
About SHEA Global
SHEA Global is a strategic software and technology partner in end-to-end business transformation and ongoing optimization. The company offers business intelligence and analytics, enterprise, and infrastructure software, working with organizations to optimize their business. By integrating ERP, business intelligence, analytics, Microsoft Office 365 and Microsoft Azure cloud solutions in mid-market organizations, the company builds smarter, leaner, more profitable businesses SHEA Global’s headquarters is in Richmond Hill, Ontario but they serve clients globally in Canada, USA, UK, Philippines and India.
SHEA business consultants provide expertise across a range of industries, including: Food Processing, Industrial Equipment, Entertainment, Human Resources, Sales & Marketing, IT, Finance and more. SHEA Global aims to take your business to the next level to help you achieve operational excellence. Through our experience and tested methodology, SHEA works with you to make your Business Better.
About TransLution™ Software
TransLution™ Software offers their client’s practical, simple to use software and systems that integrate financial information with business operations resulting in measurable business improvements: efficiency, data accuracy, business control and access to critical business information in real time. TransLution™ Software makes managing complex production processes in manufacturing and warehousing companies simple.
TransLution™ Software uses barcode scanners, touch screen computers, android devices, direct integration to scales, flow meters, analytical testing equipment and other plant equipment to gather your manufacturing and warehouse information easily and efficiently. TransLution Software is implemented and supported by a network of quality resellers and is available in Africa, the UK, North America, Canada, Europe and Australia.