Digital workflow solutions provider, Intoware, has launched its next-generation SaaS digital work-instruction platform for web browsers, ‘WorkfloPlus-Web’, designed to connect the factory frontline.
This new iteration enables manufacturers to quickly and easily transform paper-based procedures into smart digital workflows that are now accessible via a web browser, while opening up the platform to operating systems such as Microsoft Windows for seamless integrated working.
“Our developers have listened to customer feedback and found new ways for workers to create, access schedules and manage maintenance tasks using WorkfloPlus,” said Lee McDonald, Chief Technology Officer, Intoware. “While already available on Android and iOS, ‘WorkfloPlus-Web’ gives accessibility via your web browser, so workers will be able to do everything they can do on their mobile or wearable device, now via their desktop or device browser.
“WorkfloPlus is built with Open API’s that connect the platform with third-party systems such as ERP, PLM, CRM and asset management. As it’s unlikely that WorkfloPlus will be the only digital ‘tool’ within your business, as work being carried out may require information held in existing systems which means they need to connect so data can flow easily. ‘WorkfloPlus-Web’ simplifies this process integration further still.”
This means procedures such as asset inspections can be carried out as a workflow, then when completed the data is formatted to satisfy a required system such as IBM Maximo and SAP, which in turns allows for documents to be easily extracted and converted to complete tasks. This workflow process integration reduced the change-over times when switching product lines for pharma manufacturer Bayer, to minimise downtime while at the same time providing an audit trial for GxP compliance.
If systems aren’t integrated via Open API’s in this way, it means these processes can become complicated by the number of different applications that are involved to complete a single procedure. Every time a worker for example, switches to a different system it wastes time and interrupts their focus on the job in hand.
Some of the benefits of integrating WorkfloPlus with enterprise systems are as follows: –
- User management – allowing external systems to create, edit or remove users as needed, especially useful where a workforce is transient with a large number of temporary contractors.
- External scheduling – if schedules for work exist in an ERP or PLM tool then an integration layer could create a scheduled job in WorkfloPlus for each activity, potentially pulling in files, drawings and metadata and attaching them to a job before scheduling it for completion by the date and the person indicated in the external system.
- Automating parts ordering – WorkfloPlus collects data related to usage of parts for repairs, this data could be fed into an ERP system to automate purchase of replacement parts.