We have seen many of our customers use EAC assessments as the first step to open up a world of opportunities for their company to grow and evolve its processes.

JR Automation has been an EAC customer for over a decade, and when we first started working with them, the first action was an EAC assessment. We were able to provide them a customized roadmap for success and prove how JR was going to achieve it. EAC has helped JR Automation find ways to save time, save money and increase efficiency – with savings over $1.4 million every year. JR took the first step with EAC helping them to find that starting point. Today JR continues to find new ways to innovate and evolve with growing customer demands in a highly competitive marketplace.

 

What to Expect from an EAC Assessment

Assessments can seem daunting at first. You may be asking yourself questions like, “Are they going to come in and tell us all the things we are doing wrong?”

In reality, our goal with assessments is to identify your current state and production/manufacturing processes, assess the maturity of your operational technologies, and work with your team to pinpoint an ideal future state. Making transformational changes to a company can be a sizable cultural shift and we help companies prepare to make that change. There are risks you take when you don’t assess your current situation, and we want to help you minimize those risks.

 

Functional Group Assessment (FGA)

The EAC Functional Group Assessment provides an objective format for your functional groups to truly understand their creation, consumption, and delivery of product data. These groups could consist of any cross-sectional team members from engineering, design, manufacturing, sales, marketing, or management.

During an FGA, our team of subject-matter experts will work to understand how your key team members work daily to complete the product development process. After the evaluation is complete and our experts have uncovered your current processes and technology usage, we will help you establish a roadmap that will lead your company to higher productivity and savings across the board.

After our findings have been documented and studied, we will lay out new possible methods and functions to improve overall productivity. These recommendations could include ways to improve capability gaps, business policy improvements, procedures that ensure efficiency and alignment, or strategies for training to maintain efficiency.

The benefits of an FGA could span from understanding your Functional Group alignment to business objectives and initiatives and their use of existing toolsets to examining processes and daily tasks that reflect your current state. We also uncover overall awareness of opportunities for improvement and bring alignment to Functional Vision for your desired future state.

Ultimately, we help you create a plan to achieve that desired state so you can spend less time wondering how to grow and more time-saving money through innovation. Companies like ITW Paslode and Nordco have taken advantage of the FGA and have seen the financial value in getting started on the transformational journey.

 

Product Development System Assessment (PDSA)

Similar to the FGA, a Product Development System Assessment is an EAC-provided service that explores an organization’s product development system functionality. Our experts look at an organization’s operations and provide broad insight into improvement initiatives and establish a strategy for achieving operational improvement of a Product Development System.

When working through this assessment, our team has candid one-on-one discussions with your team members where we uncover what is working well, any occurred costs, and evaluate optimization opportunities.

The results that stem from an EAC Assessment are unmatched. Companies are discovering data they never knew were siloed, teams that were frustrated with processes, and many other disruptions in production. After uprooting and addressing these issues, companies like JR Automation, HyrdaForce, DRS, Merrick, and Systems Control are able quote more business and respond to customers faster – increasing their profit as well as employee and customer satisfaction.

 

Streamlined Product Development System Assessment (SPDSA)

Similar to the functional PDSA, the Streamlined Product Development System Assessment focuses on the interviews and direct inputs from your team members. However, it does not include an online survey and corresponding metric output. This assessment is offered as one variation of the Product Development System Assessment to fit your specific needs.

This assessment is a great fit for companies that have the desire to optimize their product development system, have the approval to move forward with the optimization, but are unsure where to start or what to focus on first.

While there are a few exclusions from the full PDSA in this assessment, our team still coordinates select participants to plan and schedule the execution of individual interviews with participants involved in the assessment. This process will be a higher level approach than a full PDSA, and may not include as many details or metrics. This assessment is still an excellent tool to explore your current business functions and define a roadmap to success.

 

Digital Manufacturing Assessment (DMA)

The Digital Manufacturing Assessment evaluates the overall state of your current product development systems regarding IoT initiatives, provides broad organizational visibility to improvement initiatives and identifies an IoT solution roadmap to help you determine the very first steps you should take on your digital transformational journey.

After evaluating your current manufacturing practices and operations, our experts will identify the best opportunities for growth that align with your corporate goals. When Kimray did a DMA with our team, they were able to recognize technology and solutions that would integrate with their current processes and also propel them to the next level in production. Together we developed a strategic roadmap that enhanced their processes.

The opportunities and pathways are endless to how your company can achieve digital transformation in the same way – a DMA is a great place to start.

 

Value Stream Mapping Assessment (VSMA)

A Value Stream Mapping Assessment consists of documenting the key action steps during production, gathering information from inputs and outputs, examining the systems used to manage that information, and pinpointing key optimization opportunities at each step. After, our experts work with your team to define an ideal future state of your product development process. The future process documentation outlines key improvements needed in business principles, policies, processes, and procedures utilizing the latest systems available to you to facilitate those improvements. Our EAC experts then defines a high-level roadmap and guidance on how to achieve those improvements.

During a VSMA, your team can expect to receive an important strategy that documents your current state including process documentation, pains, and what those pains are costing your business. With this information, together we will curate the vision of your future state – what your development could be – and create a roadmap on how to get there.

The company MEANS had EAC come in for a VSMA and was able to get a roadmap on system integrations that opened up the opportunities for better processes to connect their company. With an EAC roadmap, MEANS was able to realize a future state of streamlined processes to get their product to market faster and with less downtime.

 

When to Start

Now that we’ve answered the “what” and “why” of EAC assessments, the next question is “when.” Knowing you want to take your business to the next level, but feeling like you don’t how or where to start is the perfect time to invest in an assessment. Our ultimate goal is to understand your unique enterprise, your corporate strategic goals, and its current state, define your ideal future state, and plan an achievable way to get there together. EAC’s Assessment services can be the stepping stones for long-term company success and digital transformation.

Want to hear more testimonials or see which assessment would fit your company best and see how we could transform the way you do business? Connect with one of our experts!

The future of digital transformation is happening now, and it is driving the future of all industries. This article highlights just about everything you need to know about the impacts and trends involving digital transformation.

No matter where your company resides on its digital journey – or even if you have yet to start with digital transformation, this article is just for you.

What is Digital Transformation?

Digital transformation refers to the concept of applying innovative uses of digital technology to solve traditional business problems.

For example, in a narrower sense digital transformation might refer to a simple concept such as ‘going paperless’. Yet, on a larger scale, it might refer to ‘achieving digital business maturity’.

Digital solutions not only enable organizations to achieve new levels of efficiency through automation, but they also open doors for creativity and innovation (rather than simply enhancing and supporting traditional methods).

Although applying the use of digital technology to solve traditional problems can offer numerous business advantages, many organizations have yet to begin the journey with digital transformation.

Digital Innovation: Where to Start?

With numerous applications, methods, and strategies, it can be difficult to know where to even start with digital transformation!

If this is the case with your organization, – don’t worry, you’re not alone.

According to a research study performed by Accenture and the World Economic Forum, 80% of executives stated they were completely convinced ‘digital’ advancements would fundamentally change and transform their industry within the next 5 years!

That’s right. Eighty percent! … And they’re not wrong at all!

In fact, digital technology has not only already begun to transform industries, but it has also started to transform the way the world experiences products. Despite the ability to recognize the effects that digital processes will bring, only 17% of the studied executives stated they had a strategy in place to address the challenge of digital transformation.

This left a shocking 87% to admit they had no current digital strategy in place whatsoever! This is exactly why, if you have not yet started your digital transformation journey, it’s important to realize A) It’s not too late and B) You are not alone. There is no better time to start than now!

Organizations are realizing the significant impacts that the digital transformation era brings and how it’s going to drastically change just about everything when it comes to the way we do business.

The Impact of Digital Transformation

The process of digital transformation is creating entirely new ways of doing business. It has begun to create new experiences for customers while adding entirely redefined value propositions for mature product segments.

This era of digital transformation has started to impact and define what products are and what they mean to businesses and consumers.

Product perceptions are changing

Digital trends have also started to influence purchase decisions and sales processes. As the digital world has advanced, the average consumer is making purchase decisions with a Product as a Service (PaaS) mindset.

This means the rise of digital transformation has driven consumers to be sold by the outcome of the product – the recurring value. Manufacturers can address this shift in the market demand archetype by embracing three technology categories – Internet of Things (IoT), analytics, and mobile.

The future and advancement of technology is happening now

Established power plays and industry lines are beginning to blur. You cannot wait until some time in the near future to start your digital journey.

If your organization is going to succeed going forward, you won’t want to be left behind in this new industrial revolution, or you will fail.

Whether or not you’ve noticed if your industry has been affected yet, the key message is the effect of these disruptive technologies doesn’t discriminate one sector or industry. Every industry will see a major impact due to these digital technology advancements… And it is happening right now.

‘Business as usual’ is no longer an option. Organizations must adapt in order to survive.

The future of Digital Transformation: Smart, Connected Products

Digital transformation is reinventing products. Products from cars, to jet engines, to pumps, to heavy equipment, to medication, and more!

Machines, assets, and devices are starting to communicate, learn, and react to newly accessible context as they exchange and leverage data from sensors.

We are talking about the area of ‘living products’ – meaning transformative products that are responsive, collaborative, reactive, and responsible. Whether products are B2B or B2C, there will be a totally different process in the way we think about how our customers are using our products in the near future.

The future is now. Don’t let the opportunity slip away.

The first step in your digital transformation journey should be a strategic one. Understand where you are, where you want to be according to your current framework or understanding, and where you’d like to be as you embrace future technology and evolve with changing markets and new opportunities.

EAC Product Development Solutions would like to help you begin your transformation. We provide the people, technology, and services to make any transformation successful. The first step should be a Product Development System Assessment (PDSA). This will help you understand the opportunity that lies in front of you. Request more information on the PDSA today and start taking your digital transformation seriously.

Product Development System Assessment | EAC Product Development Solutions

Our Product Development System Assessment will help you start your digital transformation journey

Risk… what does it mean?


For some, it is crossing the street. For others, it is starting a company with the last of their own money, or money from an expectant and hopeful investor.

But, what does it mean for companies/customers? Ultimately, I think it drives everything at a company. For some companies, often publicly traded, risk is not an option. Everything they do must have a strong business case to produce more revenue with little or no risk. Smaller companies tend to be much more willing to take risks. Sometimes it’s the only way to get the growth they so desperately want and need. In between you’ll find many companies along the willing-to-take-on-risk spectrum.

How do you convince your company or customer to take a risk?


One way is to downplay the risk. Not a good idea. It can, and likely will, bite you in the end. No, you must address risk head on. You must out weigh the risk with the potential benefits. Show examples of success. Find and present metrics from those that have gone before you. Show the potential benefit the customer/company can recognize if they accept the proposed risk. Even after all that, you may only open the door to considering an improvement project. It does not guarantee a person or company will proceed.

You must address the risk


Address the risk head on. Show how you, or your company, will mitigate risk throughout the venture. Always keep in mind the customer’s or your company’s view on risk. It could be as simple as a loss of the investment into a project. On the other end of the spectrum could be lost customers, lost revenue, or even lost jobs. By not dismissing the risk, but acknowledging it and trying to prevent it, it shows your commitment to the customer, whether internal or external. It shows you are a partner, not just someone trying to sell an idea and run.

In the end, everyone wants to grow. Very few want to take the risks needed to grow. If you’re trying to help your customer or company grow and improve, you must prove you will do everything possible to manage risk, but not dismiss its existence in the first place.

Assessments help organizations avert risk

Are you in the process of accepting risk in order to improve, grow, or move in a new direction? We offer many solutions that can help mitigate risk — solutions and services with proven track records that adhere to best practices. We also offer a Product Development System Assessment (PDSA) and Functional Group Assessment (FGA) to help align organizations, define strategic direction, and help map the best course forward. Download our PDSA brochure or FGA brochure to learn more. Please share your experience and thoughts about accepting and managing risk in the comments below.

Cheers.