“Time is money and I can’t afford to waste either one” is a common comment amongst business owners. Having the right software and equipment is critical to maintaining the efficiencies and productivity of a business. From the time an order is received until the time it is delivered, it is important that software systems in particular are able to quickly and easily complete their intended tasks. Without the ease and speed of good software platforms there is the possibility of starving downstream processes and/or creating unnecessary bottlenecks. Good software equals efficiency and efficiency equals time savings.
But what about the importance of the equipment itself?
Yes, of course it’s also very important and it goes hand in hand with good software, but what good is the machine without the proper software to drive it? Think of a computer without an operating system or the software to manage a business, or a CAD/CAM system to create the profiles, or a machine tool without the software to drive it. Without good software the hardware becomes less effective. Software is indeed a vital component and having the right software for your business is critical.
Built-in ‘smart knowledge’ drives machine efficiency.
Much of today’s high-end technology continues to forge new paths in accomplishing tasks faster and better than ever before. Today’s high-end fabrication equipment has built-in ‘smart knowledge’ that’s been incorporated directly into the machine’s software by the equipment manufacturer.
“Smart knowledge” embedded software is employed in many ways.
- By employing embedded knowledge systems that recognize material properties and characteristics
- Through hardware and electronic systems that can dynamically adjust the machine based on the current material being processed
- Through software algorithms that can make sheet utilization better and more efficient than anything a human could once do
- Through monitoring systems that tell you the exact status of an order
- Through automated systems that bring machine efficiencies to higher levels than ever before
While we all recognize the value of new innovative equipment, we sometimes overlook the competitive advantages that are created by innovative software. Together, both machine and software innovations drive greater productivity and efficiencies and also provide the competitive advantage companies are looking for.
The next time you are looking for a machine tool don’t forget to spend some time looking closely at the software. But don’t just look at the offline programming software; look at the embedded software systems that drive the machine and also their ease of operation. Software can truly make all the difference in getting from the order to the finished product in a timely and efficient manner.
By Frank Arteaga, Head of Product Marketing, NAFTA Region
Bystronic Inc., Elgin, IL – Voice.firstname.lastname@example.org