- Manufacturer and designer of large custom-fabricated steel products
- Needed greater visibility into projects to identify priorities and inefficiencies
- Wanted to provide easier access to data and be able to update that information in real-time
- Logi Symphony
- Engineers have better clarity of individual tasks and the influence each task has on their delivery times.
- Have created a culture where employees embrace data-driven insight
ABOUT TAYLOR FORGE
Taylor Forge Engineered Systems, Inc. is a leading manufacturer and designer of large custom-fabricated steel products for the energy, chemical, and aerospace markets. Its products are used in pipelines, power plants, refineries, chemical plants, and gas plants around the world.
When it comes to manufacturing, it’s safe to say there are a lot of moving parts. Each Taylor Forge project requires the custom engineering and coordination of dozens of tasks across five different departments. And at any given time, the company has up to 50 projects underway and 800 to 900 parts coming in from suppliers.
Moreover, engineers routinely work on multiple projects with varying schedules, so they must constantly reevaluate the priority of their tasks – often making it difficult for them to stay on track to meet their deadlines.
According to Rick Pysher, Chief Operating Officer of Taylor Forge, “As the company grew, we found our delivery performance was degrading. When we evaluated the causes, we found a lot of it was on the front end, so it quickly became clear that we needed a tool that would provide transparency for each of our projects and enable us to easily dispatch priorities to individual engineers.”
In 2007, Taylor Forge began utilizing an enterprise resource planning tool, but quickly found it had shortcomings – especially on the planning and scheduling side. So they began looking for an analytics solution that would fill in the gaps.
“Initially, the main driver for looking at advanced analytical tools was mainly around providing easier access to schedule information to help us coordinate tasks across groups, and being able to update that information in real-time.”
To find the right approach, Taylor Forge turned to Trabon Solutions, an IT consulting and application development firm, who worked to develop the company’s BI strategy and software requirements. After evaluating four different software options, Trabon recommended Logi Symphony based on its attractive mix of features, ease of use, and flexible pricing model.
After evaluating four different software options, Trabon recommended Logi Symphony based on its attractive mix of features, ease of use, and flexible pricing model. Logi Symphony could also be easily integrated within Taylor Forge’s ERP system, where the majority of information for the dashboards – such as supplier specifics and performance, internal project execution activities, sales efforts, and more – would come from.
“People just want information, and Logi Symphony has satisfied the needs of all our employees,” Mr. Pysher explains. “Whereas our people used to have to go to multiple screens and modules in the ERP to see all this data, we’re now bringing it together in one snapshot within the dashboard.”
By providing a complete picture of operations, Logi Symphony has enabled Taylor Forge to identify and resolve previously hidden constraints to timely deliveries. With the insights gained, the company has been able to reengineer its processes for more consistent execution.
“Historically, we would uncover an issue late in the process, and fixing it would take a long time. Logi Symphony has helped us tremendously with the analysis and visibility of data across the organization. Before, we wouldn’t see monthly data until two to three weeks into the following month; with Logi Symphony, it’s just a day or two at the close of the month.”
Taylor Forge engineers now have better clarity of individual tasks and the influence each task has on their delivery times. The dashboard helps them to easily prioritize key project variables and tasks necessary to complete their projects on time – a process that used to be done manually and was very time-consuming.
Logi Symphony has helped Taylor Forge implement a “push system” as opposed to the pull system they’ve had in the past. In other words, says Mr. Pysher, “Something happens and you actively are sending emails to people saying you have a problem and you need to fix it. People are now accustomed to seeing yellow and red flags and realizing that’s where they need to focus their time and effort.”
Since implementing Logi Symphony, Taylor Forge has improved their on-time delivery rate by 10 percent and has reduced lead times by 10 to 15 percent in the process. This has ultimately enabled the company to increase capacity and respond to new client opportunities with confidence.
All this success has created a culture where Taylor Forge employees now embrace data-driven insights and actively seek out opportunities for continuous improvement. They are now in the process of using Logi Symphony’s write-back capabilities to update their ERP system with new data, essentially eliminating all paper-based transactions.
“When we started down this path, we knew it would make a difference; but we couldn’t have ever imagined how far we’d be able to take it. Everything used to be handwritten; now it’s all online, written back to tables, and easily accessible. We can now analyze the data and the root causes. It’s all done in the background automatically in real-time.”