Trapped in an Excel Nightmare

A talk with Thomas Buthler,

Team Leader at Xellia Pharmaceuticals, about why he is excited about Blackbird.


When I joined Xellia 1,5 years ago, Blackbird was not an integrated part of our daily work. Operators were spending much time on making lists, writing down incidents and stops during the day. Later I would manually enter all their data into Excel.

One day I talked to a colleague of mine, who was working in the Lean management department. He told me about Blackbird and that the solution was already being used in our company – only we were not using its full potential. I realized how we could easily register stop-causes in Blackbird, and by that time, it did not take me long to get the system up and running with stop-causes and batches.

 
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I was thrilled and so were the Operators. We were saving a lot of time, and we suddenly had full transparency in our production.

From one day to the next we had accurate data. And now, since they had direct access to all the data themselves it was very easy to make a business case for management.

The implementation of Blackbird has resulted in many changes and improvements. We have even gotten some expensive projects approved due to the transparency of data. The easy access to data, is now the foundation for many questions. Management, at times contact me and ask about recent activity in the production taking place the same day – but with access to the right data it is easy to amend issues and report back quickly. At times, our team have been called “show-offs”, especially since we increased production by 20% last year.

 
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Today the team and I meet every day to discuss the main stop-causes and to compare the data from Blackbird with data from other sources.

Our future steps are to visualize the data on flat screen in the production. The operators are pleased, as it allows them to keep track on their performance all the time. We are also discussing if we should decrease our minimum-time of our stop-causes, since many stop-causes have been diminished or even have been eliminated.

I’m really pleased, my life is just so much easier with valid data, Thomas says.

 
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