How to take advantage of the downturn for the upturn

Securing the competitiveness with MES

Jürgen Petzel, Vice President Sales at MPDV, encourages manufacturing companies to invest in an MES, in particular in times of low economic activity. (Image source: MPDV)
(PresseBox) ( Mosbach, )
Reports on decreasing incoming orders or conservative market forecasts can unsettle manufacturing companies heading towards the Smart Factory. Actually, a downturn can be a perfect opportunity for the digital transformation.

Anticyclical behavior is a subject already discussed in economics classes at high school. The students are taught that saving in good times is useful to be prepared for bad times. Spending in bad times on the other hand helps to boost the economy. A similar approach can be applied for manufacturing companies.

Against the current and one step ahead

"If you invest in the infrastructure of your production during a lull, then you are ready to start before the next economic recovery," Jürgen Petzel, Vice President Sales at MPDV, points out. "A Manufacturing Execution System (MES) like HYDRA helps detecting waste in production and reveals unexpected efficiency potentials." More than 1,250 companies worldwide already benefit from the extensive functions of the MES HYDRA and secure their competitiveness in the long term.

Wisely using free resources

In times of low order volumes, the existing resources – be it machines or human resources – cannot always be utilized to capacity. A sensible solution therefore is to use any vacant times for other purposes. You could introduce an MES or extend the system in use. "Take advantage of the opportunity and connect idle machines to the MES more quickly. Also test new functions in parallel with production. Such times are also perfect to train your production staff and to bridge longer unproductive periods," Petzel explains. "At the same time you might be able to secure jobs."

When preparing the implementation or extension of an MES, the organizational processes can be optimized and streamlined, if required. Experienced MPDV consultants analyze current processes and suggest optimizations before digitizing unnecessary complex structures. If the usual time pressure is removed, you can tackle the MES implementation with all eyes set on the job. Petzel reports: "Especially when production is not running at full capacity, we can use the time to standardize the MES project as far as possible – just like in a greenfield project. The advantage is obvious: If we can integrate most of your requirements in the standard, the costs are much lower, both the initial investment and the costs over time." Another benefit is that the operation and maintenance of IT systems close to the standard are undemanding as no custom-built features must be observed.

Before you invest, get informed!

If things get tight due to the economic situation, you can use a downturn period to inform yourself about the possibilities of an MES. This takes time – and time is what you have. To this end, MPDV offers a wide range of information events. The workshop MES and Industry 4.0 provides for interested specialists and executives an overview of the scope and possible benefit of an MES and the first steps needed to reach the Smart Factory. As part of the workshop, a HYDRA user reports about their experiences with the system.

In the course of the Workshop Best Practice MES, a manufacturing company outlines how they use HYDRA in live operation and explains on site the functions and advantages of an MES. If business trips are not on the agenda, the webinar series is perfect to inform yourself about MES. In four webinars over the year, MPDV informs about application areas, functions and benefits of HYDRA and introduces interested participants to the world of Industry 4.0. Petzel adds: "For most of our users, everything started with a visit to one of our information events. The high number of participants proves that the demand for information is still high. By attending these events, you are in pole position in the race for competitiveness in times of digitization and Industry 4.0. So don't hesitate and meet the challenges now!" All webinars and most workshops are free.

For further information and registration, go to

Quote of Jürgen Petzel, Vice President Sales at MPDV:

"Use free resources due to a low order volume and have a close look at the infrastructure of your production. By implementing a Manufacturing Execution System (MES), you can prepare your company and be ready for the upturn."
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