Data Science Use Cases: Manufacturing [Guide]

Unlock the value of your data by harnessing the power of data science…

The manufacturing industry is undergoing a huge transformation to Industry 4.0. To help with this, leading manufacturers like can use data science to ingest and integrate vast volumes of data to improve production output, reduce costs, improve safety and optimise your supply chain operations.

However, this is often easier said than done, as most businesses don’t have the capacity, or specialist skills to use their own data to deliver to create opportunities for competitive advantage.

Harnessing the power of data science has many key advantages, from monitoring machinery and scheduling maintenance and using predictive analytics to understand end-to-end costs to supply chain optimisation, inventory management and demand forecasting – there are a multitude of benefits waiting to be explored.

Find out how data science can help manufacturing businesses make the most of the fourth industrial revolution…

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Why Cloud Networking Is Critical For Future Manufacturing Success [Article]

Why Cloud Networking Is Critical For Future Manufacturing Success [Article]

Director of Product Richard Beeston talks about how the effects of COVID-19 have highlighted how non-digital manufacturing operations are not an option going forward

Like many industries, manufacturers have had to contend with unprecedented disruption over the last 12 months. The COVID-19 pandemic has placed considerable pressure on manufacturers to keep production and supply chains moving. This is turn has placed a renewed spotlight on operational efficiency and manufacturers’ overall digital maturity.

Technology has a key role to play in meeting this pressure and demand for greater operational efficiency. Over recent years we have seen manufacturers start to make strides in introducing automation, robotics, IoT and data analytics technologies. All these technologies can help manufacturers increase labour productivity and improve capacity utilisation and production output. However, these benefits can only be fully realised if manufacturers have the core infrastructure in place to support these technologies. While leaders seem to understand the need for a more connected and integrated approach to these technologies, recent research from Deloitte revealed only 5% of CXOs believe they have made significant progress in this area.

The move to the cloud

The reality for many is that legacy on-premise infrastructure and platforms cannot keep up with the demands of modern manufacturing. Transitioning networks to the cloud should be at the top of manufacturers’ to-do lists, as digital transformation is no longer a ‘nice to have’ but a ‘must-have’ as they look to navigate the impact of COVID-19 and beyond.

Almost everything is moving to the cloud, and the network can be no exception. The traditional practice of buying and maintaining business networking applications and network management software in-house is expensive enough for businesses operating from a single location. A manufacturers networking solution is often responsible for supporting several sites, with diverse business uses (office spaces, factories, distribution centres, etc.) across distributed regions. This creates both management and cost challenges for IT teams to maintain uptime and productivity at all sites, especially if they lack dedicated on-site resource at certain locations.

Cloud networking is a way of building and managing secure networks online using cloud infrastructure. This means that traditional network functions and services such as connectivity, security and management and control, are sent to the cloud and delivered as a service.

As the world of manufacturing becomes increasingly connected, distributed and diverse, the sheer scale and complexity of networks will become far harder to manage and secure effectively. Cloud networking provides manufacturers with a new way to deploy and manage these distributed and complex networks.

>> Download our Cloud Networking and the 21st Century Manufacturer eBook

Meeting the complex needs of manufacturers now and in the future

Operational Uptime

Manufacturers cannot afford service disruptions. With a cloud networking solution, manufacturers can ensure all key users and devices stay connected at all times. With end-to-end visibility into network usage and performance across all sites, any drops in service or network interference are flagged immediately even if they occur at a remote site.

Centralised Management

Cloud networking solutions can deliver comprehensive, end-to-end wired and wireless network management from a single pane of glass for all users, devices and IoT. For manufacturers, this can increase operational efficiency, reduce on-site IT support costs, and allows the network to scale up and down in-line with business demand.

Actionable Insights

With dynamic environments that are prone to disruptions, manufacturers need a holistic view of what is happening across their networks. Through leveraging the latest AI and machine learning capabilities, cloud networking solutions can provide manufacturers with insights and complete visibility, control and automation of their entire network. This in turn reduces workload and improves performance. With more devices and IoT being used by manufacturers, having complete visibility into their usage and performance has never been more important.

Security & Control

Network security is vital for manufacturers and their operations. The rise of digitalisation and connectivity has fuelled efficiency and innovation, but it has also elevated security risks. The latest 4th generation cloud networking solutions provide manufacturers with an efficient and secure way to keep business and personal data and connected assets protected across all sites. This includes seamless device authentication/onboarding with policy-based controls, centralised network monitoring and advanced network analytics.

Start your cloud networking journey today

Daisy Corporate Services can help manufacturers address the intense demands of today’s climate by using the power of ExtremeCloud™ IQ, which can be deployed across any infrastructure arrangement, whether via public cloud, private cloud or even on-premise. As the industry’s leading end-to-end cloud management solution for wired and wireless networks, ExtremeCloud™ IQ leverages 4th generation cloud architecture to equip manufacturing teams with a solution that delivers the functionality, flexibility, agility and security they need.

Given the urgency the COVID-19 pandemic created for manufacturers to be able to access their systems remotely, non-digital operations are no longer an option. Can you afford to miss out on the benefits of moving your network to the cloud?

This article was originally published in The Manufacturer, March 2021

 

Extreme connectivity for a transforming sector

Daisy Corporate Services is dedicated to serving the needs of forward-thinking manufacturers to help them future-proof their IT, their cloud and communications systems. Working together as strategic partners, Daisy and Extreme Networks keep manufacturing organisations and their unique environments, including warehouses, distribution centres, and office spaces, connected and running smoothly.

>> Read our eBook: Cloud Networking and the 21st Century Manufacturer

 


Cloud Networking and The 21st Century Manufacturer [eBook]

Cloud Networking and The 21st Century Manufacturer [eBook]

Learn how cloud networking can help manufacturing operations flourish in this easy-to-digest, jargon-free eBook

The manufacturing landscape is undergoing dramatic change. Recent events have created a new set of challenges for any business that manages and supplies resources across several sites.

Volatile markets, along with the need to staff, maintain and digitise a dispersed network, are piling additional pressure on manufacturing leaders – a group that’s already juggling complex requirements from innovation and cost optimisation to agility, efficiency and resilience.

As a result, many of these businesses find their existing on-premise infrastructure no longer meets the demands of an increasingly competitive sector. The answer? Transitioning away from legacy platforms to a cloud-based alternative.

Find out why digital transformation is no longer a nice-to-have amid COVID-19 and a barrage of other unpredictable forces, and discover eight manufacturing challenges that cloud networking can help you solve and more in this easy-to-digest, jargon-free eBook.

Click the cover below to read the eBook!

Cloud Networking and The 21st Century Manufacturer [eBook]

 

 

Daisy’s CloudBridge Portal | Cloud Management Made Simple

The simple way to manage your cloud estate

Check out our 60 second video and find out how CloudBridge portal can save you time and give you the visibility and control you need to easily manage your cloud estate.

Manage your cloud services from a single dashboard

With the Daisy CloudBridge Portal, you can easily control your cloud estate from a single dashboard. Add Microsoft 365 licences, allocate them to users, view event logs, analyse billing and reporting, view usage of compute, storage, and network, plus get complete cost visibility including forecasts giving you a view into the future.

Self-serve Microsoft 365 subscriptions at the click of a button

No more requests and time spent waiting for Microsoft 365 subscriptions. With the Daisy CloudBridge Portal, you can add licences in just a few clicks with complete cost visibility, and quickly assign them to users.

Easily add and subtract users and simply allocate licences to each user

You can add users to Microsoft 365 quickly and easily, saving you time and making you more efficient and productive.

View event logs including user history, subscriptions information and subscription changes

View a historical list of events and approval requests, so you are never in the dark and always have an unrestricted view of what’s going on in your cloud estate.

Manage Azure subscriptions and usage

View your Azure usage, costs and reporting as well as all of your subscriptions and users.

Take control with complete cost visibility

The Cloudbridge Portal offers you complete transparency and visibility of your costs. View and export all of your invoices, billing and reporting from one easy to manage location.

View billing and reporting for each service

Dive into each service area for a more granular look at the billing and reporting for each service

View usage of compute, storage, and virtual network

You can easily stay on top of compute, storage, and network to ensure everything runs smoothly and there are no nasty surprises.

See into the future. Forecast future usage and costs

Use predictive forecasting to see into the future to help you make informed decisions without any guesswork.

To find out more about CloudBridge, visit our CloudBridge page or get in touch with one of our cloud experts.

Migrate To Hybrid Cloud [Blog]

Every cloud is unique when you look at them, every one different to its peers. But even in that uniqueness we can group them into types; Stratocumulus. Cirrus. Cumulonimbus and so on. Even more fundamentally, each and every cloud is constructed of water vapour. H2O.

It is the same when you are planning your journey to the cloud. You are unique, your organisation is unique, and your cloud strategy will be too – but that doesn’t mean that you can’t group what you are trying to achieve and distil it down to your fundamental concerns at the same as identifying the benefits and building your business case: organisational agility, productivity, efficiency, scalability and cost-effectiveness.

Every cloud has its silver lining but it is sometimes a little difficult to get it to the mint.

Don Marquis

Don’t think of the uniqueness of your organisation as being a barrier to adopting a cloud strategy – the bespoke nature of hybrid cloud architecture means you won’t be hammering a square peg into a round hole but creating an environment that fits your organisation.

So how do you mint that silver lining of a hybrid cloud strategy?

Which kind of cloud are you?

Firstly, it sounds simple but is often missed, we need to make an inventory of your current state. Identifying all the workloads, your user base and rate of usage for each of these workloads, calculating the cost of compute, storage and networking, defining the security, recovery and continuity needs and finally researching the all legal and compliance implications for these.

Sounds a lot but without this baseline we won’t be able to accurately assess what you have, what you need and what you want to change. Below are some pointers to help evaluate each of these areas and begin to build a picture of your estate.

Sound daunting? Our experts are on hand to help you with as little or as much of this process as you need. Get in touch to find out how we can help.

Make an inventory of workloads

The best place to begin? Making an inventory of all of your organisation’s applications and workflows, such as email systems, finance applications, databases, and CRM systems. Starting from the top and working down.

Next, we determine which workloads are business-critical, whether there is any sensitive data, which of these are prime candidates for public cloud, and which need to be highly available.

It’s a good idea to estimate the effort to move each workload to the cloud and the advantage of doing so; even a simple classification of high effort/low effort, high value/low value will give an idea.

High Effort/High Value Contact Centre High Effort/Low Value Dev/Test
Low Value/High Value Data Warehouse Low Effort/Low Value

Once a birds-eye view of these workloads has been established, the task of planning where each workload should reside becomes easier. This is something your internal teams may want to undertake or we can assist and help produce.

daisy cloudbridge consultation hybrid cloud

Identify User Base & Rate of Usage

Once we have mapped out all of your workloads, their importance to your organisation and where you can gain the most benefit from migrating them to the cloud, the next step is to identify the rate of usage and user base. This is important in order to know how you can go about executing a migration with as little effect on your users and customers as possible as well as what kind of configurations are needed.

Calculate costs

An essential part of any business decision is, of course, costing it out. What kind of level of compute is necessary? How much storage do you need? What are the networking costs? As we know the level of storage required is likely to grow and change, our cloud experts think ahead to minimise future storage costs and other hidden costs that may arise.

Define security & recovery needs

Identify your businesses appetite for risk and requirements to meet industry or customer standards is a vital part of the process; what kind of SLAs need to be in place? What sort of failover and business continuity considerations need to be taken? What are the security implications of the planned migration so far?

With more than 30 years’ experience in business recovery, we have experts on hand to assist with these critical considerations which can have some grey areas and intricacies.

Research legal

Just like for when you are assessing your security and recovery needs, make sure you are aware of the compliance and legal guidelines that your organisation must adhere to. What about future considerations? Getting all information available together at this stage is vital for planning your next steps.

Choose a type of migration

Do you need a platform-as-a-service (PaaS) where the virtual machines (VMs) are configured by the service provider? Or is this something you can do in-house with infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS)?

What about considerations like rolling back from Public Cloud? Is there a path back? Make sure you have a strategy that includes optional paths in the future means that you won’t ever paint yourself into a proverbial corner.

Got some silver already?

If you are already utilising a hybrid cloud architecture and are interested in changing things up, this may still help. If not, get in touch with one of our cloud experts and we can talk through your requirements and advise you on the optimal path and how we can help.

Thinking of starting your cloud journey, or just need advice on your current cloud architecture? Get in touch today with one of our experts, and we can help talk through your requirements.

CX Whitepaper | Delivering a Digital Customer Experience (CX) for Today’s Mobile Consumer [Whitepaper]

In this customer experience white paper, we discuss the digital customer experience (CX) and how it has shifted from a “nice to have” to an essential service.

More than ever, customer experience (CX) is shaped and delivered through digital interactions. While the majority of customer communications are still voice-based, consumers now rely more heavily on digital methods, such as email, SMS, web chat and social media. They expect the flexibility to interact through the medium of their choice, wherever they are. And, they expect to be able to switch between one medium and another while they are on the move.

The latest market research puts this reality into perspective. 9 out of 10 consumers want absolute omnichannel service – they expect a seamless experience when moving from one communication method to another, such as phone to text or chat to phone. 57% of customers would rather contact companies via digital media such as email or social media rather than use voice-based customer support. At the same time, consumers are now empowered by social media. Over one third of the world’s population has active social accounts. These consumers are comfortable posting their opinions and observations about their experiences on social media. In this environment, a negative customer service story can easily go viral.

This whitepaper provides more stats like this, discusses the digital customer experience and how it has shifted from a “nice to have” offering to an essential service, before providing an overview of the digital expectations and habits of today’s consumer and offers practical next steps for transforming customer experience from dated to digital.

Manufacturing Report 2019 [Infographic]

A free infographic highlighting the key takeouts from our 2019 Manufacturing Report.

As part of its 2019 Manufacturing Report produced in conjunction with both Mitel and The Manufacturer, Daisy polled UK manufacturing businesses to establish how many are embracing unified communications (UC) strategies, automation, Big Data and Industry 4.0, as well providing an overall assessment of key priorities and concerns for the next 36 months.

While the manufacturing sector as a whole may be technologically advanced, with Brexit looming on the horizon and disconnect in some organisations between existing technologies and core business objectives, it is clear that there are still some challenges to overcome.

Take a look at the infographic below summarising the experiences of 65 manufacturing organisations from across the UK.  Click on the image to expand.

 

Daisy Manufacturing Report UK

UK Manufacturing Report

In association with Mitel and The Manufacturer, download our UK Manufacturing Report to find out the key priorities and concerns for UK manufacturers.

Manufacturing research carried out by Daisy, in partnership with Mitel and The Manufacturer, says that although the UK manufacturing sector as a whole may be technologically advanced, there is a significant disconnect in some organisations between the uses of technology in alignment with core businesses objectives.

Daisy polled UK manufacturing businesses both small (less than 500 employees) and large (500+ employees) to find out their priorities, concerns, insights and plans for embracing digital technologies, unified communications (UC) strategies, Industry 4.0, Big Data, automation and the creation of smart factories.

The Daisy Manufacturing Report summarises the experiences of manufacturers from across 65 UK organisations to allow the wider manufacturing sector to better understand where there is opportunity to create brighter, more profitable futures for themselves, their workforces, and their customers.

Download your free copy of the Manufacturing Report to learn:

  • What UK manufacturers see as the biggest challenges facing their businesses over the next 36 months
  • How many UK manufacturers have a joined-up business and IT strategy in place
  • The predominant focus of manufacturers in creating a Smart Factory strategy
  • What percentage of manufacturing businesses are unlikely to employ a Smart Factory strategy
  • What crucial investments are needed in order to achieve continual output and improved efficiencies
  • Current IT spend of manufacturing businesses both large and small
  • What manufacturers really think about Brexit uncertainty

As more and more manufacturers begin to understand that digital technologies are not a challenge but a huge opportunity to create a brighter and more profitable future for themselves, their workforces and their customers, then these barriers to understanding will fall away.

The manufacturing report concludes:

“To become a true digital business, an organisation needs to adopt an ‘always on’ infrastructure, supported by an agile workforce which is always fully connected and protected. In this way, unified communications enable seamless information sharing, knowledge gathering, collaboration and productivity.”

– Daisy Corporate Services

Daisy_Group_Give_Your_Machines_a_Voice

Digital Transformation: Give Your Machines a Voice

Learn about the digital possibilities that lie in the manufacturing sector.

Digital transformation discussions tend to focus on extracting and analysing data within a discrete network. In this article, we discuss how you can equip your machines to communicate with operators along a unified cloud-based communications system that integrates direct-dial and mobile voice comms, on and off-site, with data and video.

Continue reading “Digital Transformation: Give Your Machines a Voice”

Dewhirst

 

 

Daisy’s structured approach, careful planning and professional consultants, ensured this high profile project ran smoothly, on time and under budget with no impact on the day to day running of the business.

Richard Theakston,  IT Manager at Dewhirst Group 

The Background

Founded in Yorkshire in 1880, Dewhirst is one of the world’s leading designers and manufacturers of quality clothing, with a strong reputation for technical innovation and multiple supplier contracts with the biggest names in global fashion and retail.

Agility and cost-effectiveness are of paramount importance in this industry. Dewhirst clothes are produced in multiple locations including India, Cambodia, China, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Vietnam, with more than 800 IT users based outside the UK. Managing these diverse locations is a 24/7/365 job, requiring secure and reliable remote access to all factory servers. Careful and effective management of IT costs is a key concern.

Daisy and Dewhirst have a long-standing relationship, which initially involved the managed hosting of Dewhirst’s global IT infrastructure via the CloudSure UK platform. Given both companies’ shared passion for innovation, it’s no surprise that this collaboration has progressed significantly since then.

The Challenge

Ever on the hunt for new and effective solutions, Dewhirst was keen to explore an even more scalable hosting option. As well as a secure, virtualised environment that would deliver all IT resources including servers, storage and software licensing “as a service”, the company wanted unprecedented levels of flexibility and scalability. This would enable it to “power up” and “power down” its IT requirements in line with demand cycles and the employment of seasonal workers.

Daisy, meanwhile, was aware of CloudSure’s limitations in being a shared infrastructure solution to newer hosting platforms, and keen to migrate customers towards more appropriate solutions in line with their needs.

That’s why, when Daisy proactively approached Dewhirst to discuss a changeover to Microsoft’s cloud-based Azure platform, the ideas chimed closely with the client’s own thinking – a clear reflection of the deep understanding that had grown between them, as well as Daisy’s close familiarity with Dewhirst’s IT and business needs.

The Solution

By moving to cloud-managed hosting with Microsoft Azure, Dewhirst would eliminate the labour-intensive process of applying upgrades that had rendered the previous platform less efficient. It would also be able to enjoy significant new cost benefits.

Daisy demonstrated its ability to handle the project using a range of relevant case studies, while leveraging its status as a Microsoft Gold Cloud Platform partner and a suite of references from Microsoft itself.

After agreeing a detailed design strategy and roadmap, a carefully-selected team of consultants set about coordinating, implementing and testing the new platform. The migration took place gradually, with Dewhirst’s less critical servers migrating to Azure first in order to manage risk. For a brief period before full migration, both old and new environments ran in parallel while the new arrangement underwent exhaustive testing.

The entire transformation process was completed within two months of receiving the purchase order.

The Result

Having migrated to Azure, Dewhirst’s IT infrastructure now offers the agility the company needs to stay at the forefront of its industry.

Data and applications are all reliably and securely hosted, and fully accessible from UK headquarters. Technology upgrades are applied instantly by Microsoft Azure, avoiding the disruption and accumulated cost of manual intervention that had characterised earlier solutions. Application testing is more efficient, allowing the easy deployment of vital new business software.

The total cost of ownership is further reduced by Azure’s own pricing structure, where billing occurs on a “time used” basis. This gives Dewhirst unprecedented flexibility in adapting to its own real-time needs, including changing workloads. Seasonal staff can be accommodated easily, and the IT environment is able to grow on demand with little risk of “over-dimensioning”. In effect, Dewhirst’s IT strategy has moved from a capex model to an opex one.

As part of the changeover, Daisy also helped Dewhirst to halve its colocation expenses, by reducing legacy equipment and associated cooling and heating costs. This has also significantly reduced its carbon footprint.

This swift, seamless transformation project was aided by the trust and understanding that exists between client and supplier. As well as providing Dewhirst with clear business benefits right here, right now, such close cooperation allows both companies to maintain a shared, forward-looking perspective and anticipate future needs.