Kautex Automation Success Story

Kautex Reclaims Process Control

Kautex, global provider of plastic fuel systems and filling applications, needed to replace an outdated service management system. Weary of relying on a third-party for system maintenance as well as new process implementation, Kautex’s IT team regained its autonomy and increased its agility by implementing PMG’s low-code Digital Business Platform. Soon after, PMG became a hit across many units of the global Kautex workforce.

Kautex Textron

Challenge: Third-party dependency slowed IT response times

Every IT employee knows the paralysis inefficient tools can cause. Kautex Textron’s IT team knew this all too well, as its team was responsible for supporting around 4,000 networked employees using an outdated service management tool. Kautex lacked a globally implemented platform, resulting in disjointed processes from location to location. And improving these processes was a slow affair, as all changes needed to be implemented by a third-party expert.

Jon Jenkins, Kautex manager of IT business process automation, set out to find a system that could sync and standardize global processes for greater overall consistency. He also wanted an intuitive system to create self-sufficiency for his team of citizen developers and end his challenges with third-party dependency. And through this self-reliance, he hoped to enable rapid responses for agile IT initiatives. Frustrated with the current software, Jenkins turned to PMG for help.

Solution: Simplify manufacturing business processes by adopting the PMG Digital Business Platform

PMG’s Digital Business Platform readily met Jenkins’ pre-established criteria.

  • Using a single portal interface, PMG helped standardize global processes by ensuring a consistent experience across geographically dispersed worksites
  • PMG’s built-in administration capabilities put power back in the hands of Jenkins’ team of citizen developers, establishing the autonomy Jenkins craved
  • Finally, PMG’s straightforward workflow designer allowed IT to easily rebuild all services managed by the legacy system, giving the team the speed needed to tackle new challenges on the fly

With a PMG partnership officially in ink, the implementation kicked off according to plan. To start, Kautex’s IT team mapped out a timeline for rebuilding the existing services in PMG. And when some of these global processes began to flourish in the new platform, several of Kautex’s departments took notice.

Before long, Jenkins received a request from Kautex U.S. management, who was struggling with shift time recording for its manufacturing teams. Jenkins saw the opportunity for the PMG platform to deliver a solution, and with PMG, the team quickly created a time management system to monitor production effort. Now shift managers capture labor data in one place. As a result, leaders pull reports from PMG to analyze labor patterns and make more informed decisions on employee scheduling.

Results: PMG provides insights, simplicity to three distinct processes

As word of the team’s success continued to spread, calls for help grew as well. In fact, IT received so many requests that the department placed its original rebuild project on hold to focus on these new high-value initiatives which ranged from helping product engineers design work packages to shedding light on trading partner relationships.

The next challenge to address? Improving work package design tracking. To better help product engineers, the IT team built a series of tailored data input screens, allowing product team members to record details of time spent on design activities, which PMG then stores for later analysis. The forms capture a wealth of data, such as time spent on the individual stages of each production project, helping engineering managers keep track of the product design progress. And with PMG, lead engineers can pull reports on this data and then tweak work packages accordingly.

Seeking to create a more efficient supply chain, Kautex requested help managing its trading partner relationships. Specifically, leaders wanted to track the compliance history for each partner. To give employees an easy means of recording material compliance, Jenkins’ team set up a database in PMG to store all material compliance history. Now by pulling behavior reports from PMG, company leaders easily identify ideal partners, as well as those who tend to cut corners.

Finally, to create greater visibility into factory capacity levels, production managers were next in the queue for help. Currently, Jenkins’ team is creating a series of tailored data input screens, this time to capture key production planning data from Kautex’s 250 global manufacturing machines. Production managers will soon be able to use PMG to pull a production “heat map,” which helps leadership simplify capacity management by showing which areas are at capacity and which can stand to take on more assembly.

“A lot of processes are just out there doing their own thing,” said Jenkins. “With PMG, we can help get these processes under control by looking at them to determine which are working correctly, and working out which bits need improvement. This helps us improve future operations, and we’ve found that’s really the key benefit.”

Looking ahead: IT continues focus on process efficiency

Process improvements have yet to slow down for Jenkins and his team, which included Madhura Jayasundar, Nirutha Karanth and Patrick Falvey. In fact, they recently digitalized and automated several key HR processes, such as scheduling employee training and development, organizing business trips and even planning employee vacations.

As for what’s next, team members have plans to next improve the management of merchandising stock levels, one of many process improvements on the team’s to-do list. Fortunately, the support and self-sufficiency delivered by PMG has helped Jenkins and his team extend the platform well past the initial 35 IT services they had planned to migrate.

“We’re at a good level of knowledge with PMG. It’s an intuitive system that allows us to handle most things ourselves. For those times where we do face minor challenges, we reach out to the PMG support team and receive very good support and information on how to keep driving forward,” said Jenkins.

And while the initial request migrations took a backseat for a time, Jenkins can finally cross them off his list. As of today, all 35 services are up and running in PMG. So whether migrating global processes or simplifying labor management, Jenkins and his team can look to the future confidently, relying on PMG’s low-code, configurable Digital Business Platform as the key foundation.

“A Low Code Platform That Allows Everyone To Start Automating.”