1 year ago

Case Study - versiondog in use at Tata Steel

  • Text
  • Plants
  • Downme
  • Haddad
  • Hassan
  • Backups
  • Auvesy
  • Maintenance
  • Soware
  • Producon
  • Versiondog


CASE STUDY Tata Steel Absolute certainty as to which is the latest version of any project Last year, Tata Steel Europe produced 10 million tonnes of steel and generated a turnover of €7.9 billion. Nearly all producon processes at Ijmuiden are connual and need to be kept running 24/7, so avoiding downme is a top priority. That’s a big part of the reason why versiondog is in use across the board there, on all produc- on lines. But because Tata Steel business units have a high degree of autonomy, the way individual units use versiondog varies considerably. “That’s because different units are involved in different kinds of producon.” explains Hassan “With versiondog, we always know the current status of our producon plants. versiondog makes our work easier, saves us me and gives us end-to-end clarity on what changes have been made. You can’t get beer quality than that!” Hassan El Haddad works as technical automaon specialist at HDT, Tata Steel Europe El Haddad technical automaon specialist at HTD. “But despite that, they sll all use versiondog, and that just shows how flexible the system is. The fact that there are no rules set centrally also tends to lead to different units using versiondog in different ways. How they use the soware is up to each individual unit. But part of the essence of versiondog is that you never lose any data,” he adds, “and you always document all changes, so there is no real need to impose any bureaucracy on the system.” There are 18 units and around 200 users with access to versiondog. Hassan El Haddad and René Blaauw, being two of the system administrators are able to centrally monitor and manage some 3,000 versiondog components. The number of backups being made of device control programs is steadily growing. Depending on the needs in each parcular producon area, some are made daily, some weekly and some monthly. Around 150 backups of the more crical equipment are made every day. When new machinery is installed, backups are inially made more frequently. When it is confirmed that everything is running smoothly and reliably, the interval can be extended. Fortunately, seng up and changing backup jobs in versiondog is a very straighorward process. “In the past, we used to make backups for the sake of making backups,” recalls Mr. El Haddad, “With the number of devices we have, that was a huge waste of me. Now our teams know when a change has been made and when a backup is necessary.” Some of the units backup their networked devices automacally. Others do so manually because they have a lot of stand-alone machinery, hence devices that are not networked. One of the many advantages of the versiondog system is that it supports both automac and manual backup rounes equally well. Plus there are units for whom adhering to the “Management of Change Protocol” and registering each and every change is extremely important. HTD at Tata Steel believes: “However versiondog is used, the benefits are the same; we always know who changed what and why. Centralised documentaon of changes is of tremendous value.” Whenever we roll out versiondog to new users, we always pay a lot of aenon to the security of the network. Sasfying the various security requirements of different producon plants is another area in which this soware offers a high degree of flexibility. HTD can easily grant and manage access rights centrally, according to the needs and wishes of each individual unit. An advantage of this is that if a unit is subsequently reorganised, the system administrator does not need to be called in to deal with access rights. A number of external contractors have also been granted access to the versiondog system so that they can Check- In projects themselves. The fact that the maintenance technicians are happy to allow this shows how much they trust the system. Jusfiably so, because all changes made by contractors can be easily viewed and approved. And if a change sll doesn’t produce the desired result, the previous version can be quickly restored to the device. HTD emphasises one very important advantage: “With versiondog, we always know the current status of our producon plants. versiondog makes our work easier and saves us me.” Central data storage, easily comprehensible documentaon of all changes and Smart- Page 2/4

CASE STUDY Tata Steel eite 2/4 More me for new tasks: Automated backups and structured data management result in substanal me savings for maintenance staff at Ijmuiden - © Tata Steel Europe Compare (i.e. graphical or text-based detail comparisons of versions) all lead to vastly improved clarity and certainty. Hassan El Haddad couldn’t say exactly how much me Tata Steel saves: “Yes, that’s something that our management would also like to know,” he says, “but it is as difficult to quanfy in euros and cents as is the benefit of having a smartphone.” He goes on to explain how a substanal improvement in their work comes from knowing the condion of the producon equipment. That makes proacve preventave maintenance much easier: “The more we know about our machinery, the beer we are able to maintain it. What’s more, we have more data available for analysis, and we can use that to improve our processes. That’s what the Industrial Internet of Things is going to be about, but for us it is here today.” The main goal was to reduce downme, and that has been achieved. “We now know exactly which version of any control program is the one currently in use, we don’t just think we know which one it is.” The system administrators are now exploring the possibilies offered by the new features and opons in versiondog 6.0. As experienced users, they can quickly appreciate the new features that they regularly discover and that promise great benefits and are keen to make them available to the users. They are parcularly enthusiasc about the new SAP interface. As the maintenance department already manage equipment data with SAP, automated integraon of producon plant data into versiondog would be a valuable crosssystem benefit. Tata Steel is no different to many other companies in that the staff inially regarded the introducon of versiondog with a degree of scepcism. “Since then, though, our work culture has changed.” That might sound like quite an asseron, but Hassan El Haddad is adamant: “We now approach problems and tasks differently. Our people now primarily see the opportunies that change offers, and not just the risks. They appreciate the workload reducon, smoothing of workflow and the certainty that versiondog provides. That is why versiondog is not simply a tool, it has become a core element of our maintenance culture.” Some people had been doing their jobs more or less the same way for more than twenty years. Now new possibilies have suddenly been opened up and attenon is being focussed toward areas where there is much to be gained. For many, it has been a transformaon. Backups, plant monitoring, informaon for planners and engineers – the AUVESY soware is even involved in data management for the producon plant power supplies. And these plants contain machinery that uses a lot of energy! The way tasks are now approached in maintenance has resulted in a broader change in atudes toward innovaon. “Sharing more means learning more” is the principle. Readiness to exchange informaon about problems in producon depends on the degree of desire to learn from one another as a team. The webbased versiondog Factory Floor Status is used a great deal in this context. This useful add-on gives staff ready access to addional informa- on and KPIs concerning jobs and components. Hassan El Haddad’s concluding remark: “If you want to minimise downme or avoid it altogether, it is not enough to just think you know which version should be the right version of your control program project. versiondog gives you end-to-end clarity on what changes have been made. You can’t get beer quality than that!” Seite 2/4 Page 3/4

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