Leveraging Technology Into Manufacturing

By Kim Barrier, CIO, Bio-Rad Laboratories

Kim Barrier, CIO, Bio-Rad Laboratories

Challenges in Technology in Manufacturing Sector and its Solutions
We have our manufacturing location spread across the globe with 11 in North-America, 12 in Europe and 2 in Asia. As a core manufacturing company which makes its own products, the biggest challenge that we face is the lack of a global manufacturing organization or solution leading to lack of uniformity and a standard procedure. However we are in the process of putting in a single global instance and has moved only 20 percent in the journey with a lot of portion of the business yet to complete. My biggest focus is not just manufacturing but supply chains procurement and financial processes.

Technologies giving competitive edge in the Manufacturing sector
Technology is only one component. Looking on the main manufacturing and the processors, from a technology point of view it is a tender market. So when we talk about the cloud and the solutions in the cloud with one component being able to provide the technology faster and also needs to be coupled with the business and in turn the business looking on how to improve the manufacturing process.

Technology trends Impacting Enterprise Business Environment and Manufacturing Industry
We were able to utilize certain concepts of big data in defect analysis and improving our manufacturing process, lowering the cost of ownership and on how to use such areas to get informations that changes our processes. The other thing that we look at big data is the core area of machine to machine, where we place our instruments at the customers’ sites and where we are able to look at its performance and get that information in a real time basis so that if we have problem with our instruments on the field it can be notified directly to the customer and a technician can be send to look at it.

When looking at manufacturing operation it is hard to understand how to bring technology whether in software or on how to leverage technology to support good manufacturing process. Technology counts to a portion of it and has really to do with understanding how manufacturing processes are supported by it.