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30 March 2021

Our client has a range of complex interfaces between two systems with which they manage a large number of spare part items across multiple equipment types. Specific recurring errors were identified and after conducting a root cause analysis, the problem was addressed with a custom SAP and On Key interface.

Key Challenges

  • Complex interfaces between two systems.
  • A large number of spare part items to manage across a large number of equipment types.
  • Various types of service contracts.
  • Little to no access or insight to processes followed in SAP®.

Client Background

Our client is an Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) supplying, filling and packing machines to the liquid food and beverage industry. SAP® is the equipment and spare parts master interfacing to On Key. On Key is the master of the asset care plans. Various interfaces are used to manage the extension of material master items to local warehouses and creating Service Orders in SAP® after the generation of Work Orders in On Key. The Asset Care Centre received an increasing number of queries from the markets regarding incorrectly generated work Orders in On Key, or that service orders are not being generated in SAP®. Incorrectly generated Work Orders affects the efficiency and accuracy with which the Field Service Engineers (FSE) can execute their work resulting in losses to the OEM and their clients.

Pragma Intervention

We used the DMAIC problem-solving process. Define – we identified a problem with the replacement or cancellation of spare parts in SAP® during the YMAGR process. Measuring the data revealed specific reliability team members’ asset care plans that were most affected. During a workshop, we used the fishbone diagram methodology to determine root causes and (Action) developed a process on how the reliability team should handle the information from the YMAGR process.

We discovered that the reliability team did not always act on the spare part cancellation notification, resulting in the asset care plan not being generated onto a Work Order. Secondly, replacement information interfaces from SAP® to On Key and a script automatically replaces the spare parts on the asset care plans daily. However, the replacement script does not work if the original part and replacement part is configured on the asset care plan. Improvements included the clean-up of the database removing all cancelled spares from asset care plans and updating asset care plans where the original and replacement spare is configured. Control – we presented training to the reliability team and introduced weekly master data checks between SAP® and On Key, ensuring that cancelled spares were removed. We also introduced a check on the asset care plans to indicate original and replacement parts.

“An increase in master data quality between SAP® and On Key reduced the number of incorrect spares on generated Work Orders and increased FSE execution efficiency.”

Value Add

  • An increase in master data quality between SAP® and On Key.
  • A reduction in incorrect spares generated on Work Orders.
  • A reduction in Service Order errors.
  • Increased FSE execution efficiency.
  • Increased trust between client and OEM.

Tools and Technology

  • On Key EAMS
  • Structured Problem Solving
  • SQL
  • Fishbone Diagram