Teleste Oyj, an European Market Leader in Broadband Cable Network Business is headquartered in Finland. Three of their factories are located in Finland and one in China. Two product development units are based in Finland. Their worldwide sales network covers Europe, North America, Asia and Australia.
In 2007 Teleste net sales amounted to M€ 125. The number of staff grew to 672. Main part of the net sales is generated in Europe, where Teleste is the market leader in its business.
”Ever since Predisys solution was deployed at Nousiainen factory, the first pass yield in our mass production line has improved dramatically.”
Jouni Lehtinen, Factory Director
at the Nousiainen plant
Teleste has the vision to be the leading provider of Broadband Video Technology and related services. Quick growth in product mix and mass customization according to customers’ needs are very typical in this business. "Massive amounts of data are stored into the database during the manufacturing process due to the large product mix and complexity of products”, says Jouni Lehtinen, Factory Director at the Nousiainen plant. "This has always been a major challenge in our business with huge product mix”, confirms Jari Saali, Director of Quality and Process Development Department, “We operate in a rapidly changing business, and customers have different kinds of network configurations. Both handling of and making the most of the data would be totally impossible with our old systems”.
Most of Teleste’s products have long life cycles, but changes made in each product during its life cycle are numerous. Due to the rapid market and technology development the R&D resources per product have decreased radically. The prerequisite for quicker and better fact based decision making is to have product R&D connected directly to the information generated in the manufacturing process.
Prior to deploying the Predisys solution, Teleste did not have the option to obtain on-line analysis from its production lines; various situations were only seen afterwards. “A lot of tests are run during the manufacturing process, and test results are stored into the databases. Making good sense of this data has been really poor, because it has been extremely laborious to utilize it", says Gennadi Kopkin, Quality Manager of Production, and the main user of Predisys.
“There was a definite need to obtain more qualitative information in manufacturing, because earlier only the most difficult problems surfaced. From the R&D point of view the main problem was the lack of well refined information. When needed it was only available through separate database retrieval processes", tells Jouni Lehtinen, ”Development of this new approach actually started from R&D’s need to drill down much deeper into the data in the offline-analysis. Before deploying the Predisys solution SPC-statistics were an unfamiliar procedure for us but ever since Predisys came along we have been endeavouring to increase the use of statistics. Also the R&D department has perceived the benefits, and we get increasing amounts of requests to use statistics.”
Product families that are tracked by the Predisys solution are sending data to the solution throughout the whole product cycle – from manufacturing to R&D. The whole operational staff i.e. production teams, supervisors and R&D teams are involved within the process. Predisys solution tracks production in real time and whenever a discrepancy arises, the system will automatically send an alarm. “Production line reacts immediately to on-line alarms and gets a report of corrective actions. Also R&D teams participate in solving special causes. Supervisors truly monitor what goes on in the factories and in production”, says Jari Saali, “This creates considerable improvements in each production line as even the smallest changes are so easily visible.”
Teleste carefully analyzes the first pass yield. If one product differs from the rest, R&D will be notified immediately. With Predisys it is possible for the R&D to see from the data what is the production bottleneck and adjust the product accordingly. “In the past it was impossible to analyse the first pass yield of a project in retrospect”, says Gennadi Kopkin, ”In every new project we now have the option to analyze the first pass yield on a daily, monthly or year level.”
"For us the first pass yield is on the top of the list of monitored parameters. It gives us invaluable information – it was just not possible to get it on our own”, says Jouni Lehtinen, ”Ever since Predisys solution was deployed at Nousiainen factory, the first pass yield in our mass production line has improved dramatically.” Teleste has calculated the return of investment. “It is very easy to convert the change over into money, if you know the volumes. Even an improvement of just 1% in the first pass yield has paid the investment back”, states Gennadi Kopkin.
“For the first time ever it is possible for us to see what is unnecessary work”, says Jari Saali, “Tolerance limits in production can be tighter than in the specification. Now these tolerances have been put in order by using the Predisys solution. This has enabled us to shorten cycle times and to increase volumes."
Teleste searched for a readymade application, to allow its IT-department to focus its resources in support of the businesses. From Teleste’s point of view choosing Microsoft SharePoint as the platform for the Predisys solution has been an excellent decision: Predisys solution integrates directly into Teleste’s internal intranet based projects. “SharePoint platform was one reason why we did not examine other vendors any further – this platform fits directly at Teleste” says Jouni Lehtinen. “Predisys has been very active and the product has developed greatly forward during the time it has been used by Teleste”, comments Gennadi Kopkin.
In the near future Teleste will extend the use of the Predisys solution to the next factory and gradually for the use of the whole manufacturing of the company. “Along Predisys solution the procedures throughout the manufacturing will become more systematic,” contemplates Gennadi Kopkin, "Our Predisys solution has received such good feedback from R&D and the co-operation between R&D and manufacturing has improved a lot”. “For the time being we are using only a small fraction of the possibilities in the Predisys solution. In future, as we get more experienced, our goal is to get much more benefits out of the Predisys solution by training more of our R&D personnel as users” summarizes Jari Saali. “One of the future plans is to focus on eliminating redundant measurements and investigate correlations between the various measurements, by which we can eliminate bottlenecks and further accelerate our manufacturing."