The reality of today’s global manufacturing environment demands that corporations find ways to be more efficient; efficient corporations are simply more competitive. Manufacturers that unite dispersed departments and improve communication enjoy the benefits of costs savings and increased product time to market.
Major manufacturers like General Electric (GE) use unified communications (UC) systems with video conferencing and telepresence technology to assist them in their quest for the most streamlined processes and cost efficient means of collaboration. GE’s departments and resources are spread across the globe, so the ability to get all departments together in a way that facilitates communication has always been a challenge for the company. GE now meets this challenge with a Cisco TelePresence solution; team members can have a real-time meeting experience with participants across the globe. Team members can be located in Fairfield or Shanghai, and all can easily communicate as if in the same room.
With Cisco telepresence technology, GE executives have update meetings with suppliers without traveling to each other’s locations. GE also uses TelePresence for international meetings that include many participants. Instead of flying 50 people from various cities in the U.S. to London for a three day meeting, the meeting is held over telepresence and all participants can attend without losing valuable time and money to travel. With a touch of a button, the call is over and the participants are already in their home towns. In addition, GE uses TelePresence to assist with product development; disparate teams that work together on a regular basis are easily united and meet together daily to show parts as if they are in the same building. This efficient process dramatically speeds up the time it takes for a product to go to market.
The Value of Video for Manufacturing
The power of video conferencing technology to transform the production process is exemplified by an international manufacturing company with a vast portfolio of products that deliver parts for a variety of industries ranging from automotive to construction. The head of sales at this company has regular meetings with clients over video so that decisions about product feasibility and costs can be made quickly. In the past, this process would take months, but with visual communication pressing issues can be easily and efficiently addressed.
Other challenges for this manufacturing organization include engineering and supply chain operations that are complex, with facilities dispersed around the world. At the same time, the company’s customers require answers immediately no matter how many experts are involved or where those experts are located. Manufacturers like Polycom offer visual communication solutions that help organizations respond quickly and efficiently to these challenges and build close supplier relations.
Video conferencing allows the manufacturer’s experts to connect to the conference from anywhere around the world. The company’s production engineer can receive a complete technical overview of the assembly line over video, while another expert can join remotely via laptop from an airport lounge, and another participant who is a technical engineer can get a complete technical overview of an assembly line. These experts can talk and work as if in they are in the same room, exchanging expertise with shared access to the same documents.
Working in a collaborative environment gives disparate employees the feeling of working in one meeting, sharing one discussion. Three significant benefits are improved productivity, faster decision making processes, and higher efficiency in linking people and ideas. Visual communication and UC solutions facilitate the process of engineering at multiple locations, or real time support, even ad hoc. It is also useful for marketing campaigns, service escalation, real time support for incident management, and providing the right expertise to answer a question at the right moment.
Specialized Video Conferencing, Audio Visual (AV) Integration and Managed Services for Manufacturers
The visual communication needs of manufacturers are as varied as the industries of which they are a part. Because no two manufacturer’s communication needs are alike, it is important that a unified communication (UC) specialist with a deep understanding of custom solutions is consulted to create a design that best fits the manufacturer’s unique needs. An expert integrator like IVCi has worked with hundreds of manufacturing clients and has the resources to not only design the right solution but provide complete installation and support services.
A managed service is key to the success of any video solution, and IVCi provides a complete call management service called managed video experience (MVE) to ensure the success of every call; call scheduling, launching, monitoring, and troubleshooting are included with this service. MVE customers have little interaction with the video conferencing technology; when participants walk into a conference room, the call is already up and running. All systems can be easily connected managed with MVE, including room, desktop, and remote.
For more information about unified communications solutions for manufacturers, please contact IVCi at firstname.lastname@example.org or 1-800-224-7083.