Santa’s analytics-driven Production Cockpit takes his Workshop to new heights

santa production cockpit

Holiday season is in full swing, and no production facility is busier than the one belonging to the leading toy manufacturer in the world, Santa Claus.

Over many generations the Workshop has produced and delivered countless gifts to the good boys and girls around the world, and Santa continuously strives to maximize the efficiency of his operations and ensure the integrity of their products bring joy to children year after year.

While he may be centuries old Kris Kringle, aka Santa Claus, is not one to let new technologies pass him by – in fact, he created many work methodologies we still use today. People think Henry Ford was the man behind the moving assembly line, but really it was the Man in the Big Red Suit. But as technology continues to evolve and populations continue to grow there is increasing pressure to get everything produced and delivered “just in time” (if anyone has a deadline, it’s Santa). He is also facing challenges from increasing competition from new trendy toys and gadgets in the market and climate impacts on the North Pole.

“TrendMiner was selected because of the proven value for optimizing my Workshop’s production processes. By empowering my Subject Matter Elves (SMEs) with their easy to use, plug-and-play solution, we can ensure that we can continuously produce the best toys and bring joy to children for generations to come,” said Santa Claus. “We’re even reducing North Pole energy costs and improving my delivery times!”

This is when Santa asked the question: how can we overcome these challenges? His aim was to put critical analytical skills and capabilities into the hands of the process and control elves, enabling them to solve problems on their own and passing the more complicated issues on to the data scientist elves. Santa knew he needed to leverage data analytics to take more steps towards optimizing processes and asset performances of the Workshop in order to maintain their leading position as the “best in the business”.  Santa also knew, however, that leveraging data analytics wasn’t just about buying new software: the elves needed to adapt to using the software and rethink how they handled data.

A Workshop’s Self-Service Analytics Journey

After hearing about new potential ways he could optimize his production processes with self-service analytics, Father Christmas himself signed up for the Introduction to Self-Service Analytics TrendMiner webinar back in April, and shortly after he and his team of Subject Matter Elves (SMEs) were shown a personalized demo. Because of TrendMiner was easy to use, connected seamlessly with their existing IT landscape, and came with an unrivaled onboarding process, Santa was ready to start working on use cases.

Here is one particular use case as described by Bitsy Cocobee, head of the North Pole’s Sweet Treats division:

We were facing an incident during production in the candy cane facility. However, thanks to the rapid-fire pattern recognition capabilities of TrendMiner, multiple incidents of this process behavior was discovered and seen re-occurring over several years. The search for tags was as straightforward as searching for something on Google and navigating through all the years of data was simple to do using sliders and filters. From there, we were able to drill down to find the root causes using influence factors and TrendMiner’s unique recommendation engine.

We identified the best performance periods and we created elf “fingerprints” of the processes which we now use as a monitor. The team did the same for the assets, but for the best operating zones. The monitors captured all events – including the ones residing in our other 3rd-party business applications. Combining current process status overviews with the early warning capabilities enables the operator elves to be proactive and it has optimized the flow of information between shifts.

Finally, we created a custom “Production Cockpit” which is comprised of a dashboard, analytics suite, and info sharing capabilities. We can share live overviews, access production data in real time, and conduct analyses on any processes or operating zones! Combining current process status overviews with the early warning capabilities enables the operator elves to be proactive and it has optimized the flow of information between shifts. We are now better informed and able to make better decisions at a moment’s notice, which is crucial when you work with deadlines as tight as ours!

Other ways Santa and his team of Subject Matter Elves are using TrendMiner:

  • Monitoring Coal Production

    Monitor on a formula to know if there is enough coal for all the bad kids, which frees up time to focus on production of toys for the good kids.

  • Analyzing Delivery Time

    Use comparison tables to find which years Santa spent less time delivering the gifts

  • Report Creation

    Create reports to gain insight into the trends of toys being delivered per country

  • Optimizing Consumables

    Optimize his reindeer’s food consumption to ensure quality & amount is consistent

  • Elf Knowledge Sharing

    Dashboards can be set up to help streamline the flow of information between the elves shifts, provide live production views, and historical analysis.

The benefits of self-service industrial analytics are very clear for Santa and his Workshop. It enables the team to analyze issues that are too complex using conventional tools, and helps them gain faster insight into operational issues. It enforces alternative thinking and a new way of looking at their operational performance by using data. Santa now can focus on optimising delivery with the reindeers and production is now fully under control.

“When you’ve been operating as long as we have, and have the amount of data we have, it’s only logical that we need new ways to look at it,” said Santa. “TrendMiner has bridged that gap so that my elf engineers can solve day-to-day problems to keep the Workshop running smoothly, and I don’t have to hire more data science elves.”

“We think this Christmas will be the best one yet! Every process manufacturing company should be using TrendMiner”, he added before wrapping up the interview with a giant “Ho Ho Ho!” and disappearing with a wink.

Connected Production Cockpit webinar

Curious about how to make this story a reality? Check out our free webinar and discover how you can make your own Production Cockpit and also take your operations to new heights! 

Happy Holidays from all of us at TrendMiner

TrendMiner would like to wish everyone a Happy Holiday season and a prosperous New Year!  

Regardless of whether your factory is real or not, giving your team the power to use their data is the perfect gift to keep your operations running at the optimal levels. We look forward to working with you in 2020!