Cologne, Germany — Lanxess AG is moving from trees to tablets at its production plants.
Over the next three years, the specialty chemicals company will replace around 400,000 paper-based operations and maintenance checklists with digital equivalents, then filled out on tablets.
The change will affect 65 plants in Germany, Belgium and the U.S. in the initial phase.
"Clipboards, slips of paper and pens will soon be things of the past," Benedikt Efker, head of digital production at Lanxess, said in a statement. "Tablets connected directly to the central IT systems at Lanxess will make work for our production and maintenance employees more efficient, user-friendly and safer."
Lanxess is working with Siemens on the conversion. Siemens uses the Moby.Check software that runs on tablets and can be controlled using keyboard or voice commands. Moby.Check allows users to create production, servicing and maintenance checklists on their PC without any programming work or training in advance, Lanxess said.
"Regular system checks are crucial to the smooth, safe running of chemical plants," the company said. "In the chemical industry, paper checklists are still commonplace."
Following inspections, the data is transferred to IT systems and the paper documents are archived for many years. The digital checklists by Moby.Check, however, are linked directly to Lanxess maintenance and enterprise resource planning systems.
"This end-to-end integration in the work processes helps to prevent duplicated work," Lanxess said. "In addition, templates and interfaces ensure that data is transferred correctly, and automatic archiving increases the legal security of the checks."