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Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe

Olympus digitizes maintenance processes with mobileX

As a high-tech specialist within the Olympus Group, Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe is the development and production center for rigid endoscopy, bipolar high-frequency surgery and instrument reprocessing. 100 maintenance staff are responsible for the maintenance of the production facilities at the Hamburg plant. On average, 750 maintenance or repair operations are carried out here every week. Rapid repair and overhaul is particularly important in order to keep plant and machine downtimes as short as possible and avoid production losses.

Digitization of deployment planning and order processing

Until 2019, the distribution of the operations to the maintenance technicians in the plant was paper-based every morning. The technicians also filled out the feedback on their processes on paper. In order to digitize the order processing of the 100 maintenance staff in the production of medical devices in Hamburg, Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe went in 2019 in search of a mobile application that could be easily integrated into SAP PM. The aim was to make it easy to digitally document all maintenance and repair work performed by the maintenance staff. The central scheduling of the five dispatchers should also be optimized by a software with a graphical representation of the assignments and workload as well as by skill matching. This should increase the efficiency and transparency of the planning processes.
After an extensive evaluation of various providers, the decision was made in favor of mobileX with mobileX-CrossMIP, the mobile app for order processing, and mobileX-Dispatch, the tool for deployment planning. The decisive factors were the range of functions, the price-performance ratio, the user-friendliness of the solutions, and the support services offered.

Deployment planning with graphical scheduling tool

The schedulers at Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe now plan the maintenance staff’s assignments with mobileX-Dispatch. In the process, subcontractors and external service providers are also planned. In the graphical planning cockpit, the maintenance planner has an overview of all resources, the current planning view and the worklist.
Using manual planning, he assigns the operations to the maintenance staff via drag-and-drop. Olympus also uses the semi-automatic planning of mobileX-Dispatch. In this case, selected operations are automatically pre-planned over a certain period of time. The dispatcher can then take over the planning or make further adjustments.
Repairs are typically scheduled at short notice with a lead time of one hour to one day, while maintenance tends to be distributed two days to one week in advance. The ratio of repairs to maintenance at Olympus is 20 to 80.

Mobile order processing with intuitive app

Instead of receiving their repair and maintenance orders on paper, Olympus maintenance staff now use the mobileX-CrossMIP mobile app on their Windows tablets. This also gives them an insight into the system data and history, so they are optimally prepared to complete the processes quickly and competently. After the repair or maintenance, they create their feedback in the app, which is also used to map the warehouse stock and perform a write-off of individual parts. Using their tablets, the maintenance staff can now also take photos of damage and attach them to the feedback.
By digitally recording the conditions of the equipment, Olympus Surgical Technologies now has much better transparency and options for evaluating the causes of damage and optimizing them.

Conclusion: Increased productivity and reduced machine downtime

After more than two years of using the two solutions from mobileX in maintenance, Ingo-Marcel Klatt, IT Application Consultant SAP QM & PM at Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe, draws a positive conclusion: “By digitizing our maintenance processes, we have been able to significantly increase productivity in mobile maintenance at our plant in Hamburg. In this way, we also ensure that machine downtimes are kept as short as possible or that equipment does not break down in the first place thanks to planned maintenance.

Outlook: Introduction of digital forms and rollout in other plants

The next step at Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe is the introduction of digital forms. In the future, mobileX CrossForms will be used to record tests on the devices in a more structured manner, to regularly document measured values for the devices, and to trigger follow-up processes in the event of a failed test. In addition, the rollout of the mobile app and the deployment planning in the plants in Portugal, the Czech Republic and Great Britain is pending.

Olympus Surgical Technologies Europe is the European development and manufacturing center for medical technology within the Olympus Corporation. The company stands for excellence in diagnosis, therapy, reprocessing and systems integration – offering the full range of latest endoscopic applications from single products to procedure oriented systems solutions.