Tessy Plastics Corporation specializes in manufacturing finished goods that are automatically made and assembled by robotic machines. Its customers vary across many manufacturing industries and include high profile clients such as:
- Procter & Gamble: Every Old Spice underarm deodorant container is made at Tessy. Four containers are pumped out fully assembled and labeled every second.
- Hefty: Zip up your OneZip food storage bag with sliders made by Tessy
- Johnson & Johnson: Medical manufacturing makes up 55 percent of Tessy’s sales, including parts for internal tubes and cartridges for surgical staples for Johnson & Johnson
But at a company that makes an estimated 20 million individual plastic parts a day at its 24/7 plants, Tessy was experiencing a problem. When automatically assembling goods, its machines were using incorrect components. Scrap rates were high and customer service was poor because of product quality problems and delivery delays due to rework. Tessy Plastics was in need of a solution to verify component information and eliminate costly assembly errors.
Before this project, Tessy Plastics was only hoping that the correct parts were getting to the assembly work centers by visual inspection and container labels. This project came about as a result of trying to reduce scrap and guarantee that Tessy’s machines were building the correct part in the assembly process by integrating Bills of Materials directly into assembly PLCs for validation.
Under the direction of Tessy Plastics, IQMS developed an automated process to ensure that the correct components are selected 100% of the time when assembling parts. Finished good Bill of Material (BOM) component information (triggered by the current manufacturing work order) is immediately sent from IQMS’ EnterpriseIQ ERP software to Tessy’s advanced automation equipment through programmable logic controllers (PLC).
The component identification (including sub-components, labels, materials and packaging) is sent directly to Tessy’s assembly automation PLC registers. The component information is then used by the PLC program to verify that the correct components are being used as specified in the finished good BOM. Tessy couples the PLC program with vision systems and other scanning technology in the assembly automation to verify that the components are truly a match in real time.
The end result is that the finished part being assembled is always made from the correct components as specified in the BOM, 100% of the time. Product is no longer scrapped due to errors in delivering the correct components to the assembly. To its knowledge, IQMS is the only manufacturing ERP software provider offering this ERP to PLC technology.
As a secondary benefit, this same communication protocol allows the assembly PLC to send a signal to IQMS’ EnterpriseIQ ERP system requesting a unique serialized label be printed as the finished good or packaged part is complete. Costly labeling errors are eliminated as the correct label is now automatically applied. As this automation collaboration is still new, specific return on investment savings are potential, but based heavily on testing and estimates that should be realized. Due to the previous volume of scrap from rejects and material, labor and holding costs, annual savings with this new project should be between $1.2 and $2.5 million.
Additionally, prevention of project loss due to incorrect part configurations for large volume customers should equal savings on the order of $25 million for Tessy Plastics. Maintaining margins is a big factor in contract manufacturing and there are a multitude of injection molders to choose from. Due to the nature of Tessy’s manufacturing industry, reputation and credibility is paramount as customers will tend to refer a vendor (such as Tessy Plastics) to other divisions looking for suppliers.
About Tessy Plastics Corporation:
Since being founded by Henry Beck in 1973, Tessy Plastics has been shaping the world’s ideas into a wide range of products. Whether it’s a sophisticated medical device or an everyday consumer item, Tessy has the innovative capacity to engineer, manufacture, assemble and distribute your product in the leanest, most effective way. As a family-owned and operated, privately held company, Tessy Plastics is structurally sound, yet flexible enough to maneuver in today’s increasingly globalized business world.