Ifolor, Finland’s market leader in photo products, keeps its production machines in order with the Novi maintenance management system. The client is promised a finished product in just a few days. The photo industry experienced a huge change as old film spools were replaced with memory cards when the last century changed. As a pioneer in the industry Ifolor’s predecessor, Ifi, begun producing 10 x 10-18 cm photos from digital images provided by their clients in 1999.
A change for the better occurred in 2006 as the Swiss company called Photocolor Kreuzlingen AG bought Ifi. A year later the name of the company changed to Ifolor. Under new ownership the product selection went through major changes. In 2008, cards, calendars and photo albums were added to the selection. From then on, the photo album has become Ifolor’s highest selling product.
“We decided to start organising maintenances and wanted our operators to have an easy way to make error reports and call for maintenance. We were able to implement ARROW Maint efficiently from the get go. But we moved on to using the newer ARROW Novi system quite soon after as it has a more visual user interface than Maint,” production director Timo Jokinen explains.
“Implementing Novi was extremely easy, because some of the basic work had already been done during the transition to ARROW Maint. Novi is very user friendly and the user interface is clear,” says Tobias Lang from the factory in Switzerland.
In Kerava, the change from Maint to Novi was made in the summer of 2015. Development engineer Krister Kasper says they were able to transport the information saved in Maint automatically into Novi once the new server was up.
“The transition was quite easy. The systems were down for only one day, so we were able to start using Novi very quickly,” Kasper recalls.
Production times have decreased
After the acquisition of the maintenance system, Ifolor has been able to cut production times even by 40 %. Kasper and Jokinen believe that the improvement in production efficiency has been influenced by many factors, among these is using Maint and Novi.
“With Novi we have been able to develop the cooperation between production and maintenance. Maintenance requests and their status are now available for everyone. The operations are transparent and everyone has real-time information at their disposal. This has had a significant impact on the atmosphere at work. On important factor is that now we can access the whole maintenance history of the machines,” Jokinen says.
Ifolor plans to make the most out of Novi in the future. This year, the company is focused on inputting preventing maintenances into the system. They will also implement spare part system management and lifecycle analysis.
“With the lifecycle analysis we can see how the spare part and maintenance requirements of the machines develop. Based on this information we can assess when to renew the machines,” Jokinen explains.
In Switzerland, Novi’s benefits have become concrete in many ways. “Now we have documents of the equipment and machine data and the history of flaws and errors recorded into Novi. The system is used for planning and managing daily maintenance and preventive maintenance. Production malfunction notices appear directly in Novi and the maintenances are planned together more often with production. The maintenance situation is now apparent to production. The next stage of the plans is to implement Novi in to tablets and thus to increase work flexibility even more,” says Lang from the factory in Switzerland.