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Avia digitalization: how GP Antonov introduces new technologies


And how this affects the production process

Digital technologies are widely used not only in the development of the latest smartphones, but also form the foundation of a modern manufacturing enterprise. Industrial giants of developed countries globally integrate the latest technological achievements in order to minimize the negative impact of the human factor and achieve maximum controllability, speed and rationality of production. At the same time, our enterprises have been in such a technological vacuum for a long time, exploiting the resources inherited from Soviet times and being content with the existing result.

The market dictates its conditions, and in order to compete successfully with other industrial enterprises, Ukrainian plants and factories must also take the path of digitalization.

Behind the abstract concepts “digitalization” and “modernization” are hiding very specific processes, the result of which helps the enterprise to enter a new level of work. To understand what is at stake, it will be useful to consider the example of a specific Ukrainian enterprise that is currently implementing the latest digital technologies – the state enterprise Antonov. In 2015, the airline decided to automate the production and implement the ERP-system.

First of all, the process of purchasing materials and resources was reorganized – like all state-owned enterprises, the concern is obliged to purchase goods and services through the ProZorro system, however, in the case of Antonov, in addition to the functionality of the system, a number of additional functions were connected. So, if in ProZorro system in most tenders the winner is determined exclusively by the price, for the “Antonova” the quality of the products that will be used in the production of aircraft is paramount. Thanks to the expanded functionality, the company can create a tender and prescribe non-price criteria for selecting the winner much faster, which significantly reduces the work of the purchasing department. In addition, software related to warehouses and accounting accounting systems allows the company’s managers to monitor the availability of goods in a warehouse, draw up a rational procurement plan for grouping goods into groups and save on the scale of purchases, do not go beyond the allotted budget when completing the purchase order and much more.

Now the automation of production at Antonov covers the whole enterprise, which makes it possible to monitor all processes and more effectively manage both individual processes and the enterprise as a whole. Such opportunities are provided by ERP-system – resource management system, which is the foundation of any large enterprise. Thanks to the ERP-system, any manager can open online information on all current projects online, track real-time progress in work, see information about available resources – tangible and intangible.

For example, if Antonov got a contract for the production of 10 AN-178 aircraft, the company’s management immediately sees the amount of time it will take to fulfill this contract, the number of parts and materials needed and already in stock, and much more. Based on this, a work plan is drawn up for the downline of the staff, up to the members of the work team, who receive a specific task, indicating the number of necessary equipment and a clear schedule of work. According to Interpipe, the introduction of the SmarTEAM ERP solution by the concern’s enterprises reduced the cost of repairs by 8%, increased the equipment availability by 15%, reduced emergency downtime by 22%.

On the scale of huge enterprises like Antonov, even 0.5% of savings give absolutely different indicators in annual reports, and such results of using ERP-system allow the company to effectively develop and increase the product.

But this is not all the advantages of implementing a digital enterprise management system. Covering literally the entire enterprise, the system significantly reduces the time spent on many processes that could last for weeks. If the production equipment fails, instead of a lengthy diagnosis and search for a problem and how to solve it, any worker can obtain equipment drawings online, find out the problem in a particular machine or machine, based on the wear sensor readings, and immediately place the task in the system its repair. Based on the data of the whole enterprise, the system immediately displays the amount of time, work, materials and spare parts needed to solve the problem. Based on the same data, when obtaining a contract, company management clearly sees how many jobs are needed for this project, which equipment requires repair or maintenance, what resources will be needed.

This approach saves an incredible amount of time, and also allows you to synchronize all projects with the actions of all personnel – from simple workers to top management of the company. Thanks to the comprehensive coverage of the whole enterprise system, the human factor is eliminated as much as possible, and situations become impossible where the equipment fails without the knowledge of the managers or three production halls are claimed for the metal stock available at the warehouse, and the procurement department does not see the need to purchase a new lot.

On closer inspection, it turns out that digitalization is not the development of incomprehensible “technologies of the future” or blind adherence to a useless trend, but the basis on which the enterprise development strategy is built, and at the same time the tool by which this strategy is implemented. Digitalization opens up new horizons for Antonov and allows it to efficiently and clearly establish production, getting more and more contracts and creating both added value and new jobs. And the earlier other enterprises follow its example, the faster the economy of our country will develop.

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