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Synergies Between Supply Chain Management and Manufacturing Execution Systems Create Value

Recently AspenTech hosted our bi-annual user conference, OPTIMIZE 2019. Over 1000 attendees from all over the globe and a myriad of industries joined us in Houston to learn and share how AspenTech solutions are accelerating digital transformation. “Accelerating digital transformation” — sounds like just a mixture of buzzwords, right? Here at AspenTech it’s not just a platitude, but what we help our customers do every day. 

It is an exciting time to be at AspenTech with recently announced software synergies across our portfolio that add real value for customers. The Supply Chain Management (SCM) solution capabilities and synergies with our Asset Performance Management (APM) and Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) solutions offer a clear example of the ways we’re connecting technologies to enable our customers to drive greater optimization. 

OPTIMIZE 2019 attendees were some of the first people to see several ground-breaking demonstrations of new capabilities. Even more compelling, they had the chance to hear from beta customers using some of our new tools. With 14 amazing presentations in the Supply Chain Management track alone it is impossible to pick favorites, so instead I will highlight some of the most interesting new capabilities shown at OPTIMIZE 2019. 

 

Exciting Firsts

New for V11, Aspen Schedule Explorer (ASE) is the industry’s first collaborative operations hub, enabling organizations to flawlessly execute plans and empowering proactive, educated decisions. It is also the industry’s first schedule historian enabling customers to keep track of the historical changing context that led to certain decisions. At OPTIMIZE 2019, two beta customers, Momentive Performance Materials and Hexion Inc., shared their experiences, use cases and rollout plans for Aspen Schedule Explorer. Both organizations are working towards implementing ASE across their global network of manufacturing facilities to rave reviews. 

Hexion Inc. Sr. Manager Global Supply Chain and Analytics Solutions George Baartmans said:

“The Aspen Schedule Explorer platform helps our business by giving us some foresight into the things that might be happening.  Before we had this product, the scheduler would find out about these things three to four hours after the event. We now have an environment that encourages them to collaborate and communicate ahead of time so that we can get ahead of things and reoptimize our schedules for any conditions that might be happening.  

It also helps our schedulers to free their time. The scheduler in all our plants happens to be one of THE most important functions. It’s where all the exercise or planning and forecasting demand comes together and the rubber meets the road, in that schedulers are initiating production. We can do all the planning in the world we want, but if the scheduler isn’t scheduling to that plan, it doesn’t matter. Our money is made, to a large degree, when the scheduler executes to the plan and to what is most financially optimal for our company.” 

Watch the full interview

 

New Collaboration Capabilities

In addition to customer sessions, our product management team, led by Roch Gauthier, presented two new collaboration capabilities enabled through integration between AspenTech’s Supply Chain and Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES) software systems: Goals vs. Actuals and Smart Calibration. These supply chain and MES synergistic capabilities are again the first of their kind in the industry.

  • Goals vs. Actuals closely connects the supply chain to manufacturing like never before to help close the gaps between goals/plans established during the monthly integrated business planning (IBP) processes and daily manufacturing execution.  
  • Smart Calibration brings “the self-healing supply chain” to life by quickly surfacing inaccurate information within the master data that makes up the foundation of planning and scheduling models. Identifying and calibrating this data ensures sustainable plant and supply chain performance with minimal time and talent input. 
Through live demos of existing technology, OPTIMIZE attendees learned how to leverage our industry-leading scheduling optimization capabilities with our industry-leading machine learning and artificial intelligence capabilities. 

One of the most exciting new technologies at AspenTech is Aspen Mtell®, a pioneer in the space of machine learning and prescriptive maintenance. Mtell can predict equipment failures, identify why they occur and prescribe action to avoid the failure in the future. Combining the ability to predict the future  with Aspen Plant Scheduler’s advanced optimization lets plants absorb unexpected downtime with minimal disruption to manufacturing and the least impact to customer order commitments and relationships. AspenTech is the first supply chain solution provider with the ability to model and manage uncertainty as just another variable such as reactor size or storage capacity. 

What does accelerating digital transformation mean? With aspenONE® Supply Chain Management, accelerating digital transformation means providing our customers with industry-leading, value-creating solutions that enable them to collaborate better and optimize their operations. To learn more about the OPTIMIZE 2019 Supply Chain Management presentations or the capabilities described here, email supplychain@aspentech.com
 

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