Tobacco Asia

Volume 20, Number 1

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56 tobaccoasia / Issue 1, 2016 March / April) bacco bundles at the arrival site. In the cigarette rolling and packing workshop, the few equipment operators present simply click the material feed- ing button on the manufacturing execution system (MES) terminal at the machine stand, and the au- tomatic guided vehicle (AGV) module in the lo- gistics system of the elevated depot automatically sends the material needed for production to the machine stand from the elevated depot quickly and efficiently. Such effective and orderly work processes simply can't be deployed without pow- erful computer terminals running the processes of the so-called "One Web for All" system, a brilliant example of how deployment of IT can elevate the manufacturing process to spectacular heights. As a core production factory of Hongta Group, the Yuxi Cigarette Factory has turned itself into a first-rate, second-to-none cigarette manufacturing facility. To oversee the proper integration of new technologies into the manufacturing process, the Yuxi Cigarette Factory has established a manage- ment board specifically in charge of this develop- ment under the direct leadership of the cigarette factory director who personally made sure that the deployment was given absolute priority. Strategically, the Yuxi Cigarette Factory in- tends to become an advanced cigarette making model factory unique anywhere in the world. To achieve this, it needs to persistently maintain its status as a manufacturing enterprise of high-qual- ity products. To ensure fulfillment of its strategic targets, the factory has formulated a three-stage plan for development from a "digital cigarette factory" to a "smart cigarette factory" and then to a "lean smart cigarette factory". By doing so, the goal is to achieve breakthroughs at key points at every stage, in steps and at different levels, by gradually implementing IT deployment across the business, integrating information systems and automated production schedules, facilitating busi- ness processes, improve decision making by the management, and streamlining of production and operation. Integration is the Future In 2009, Hongta Group, vying to be Yunnan Province's most forward-looking tobacco product manufactuer at the time, established an informa- tion management section to gradually bring the separately operated networks and information systems scattered in the different workshops and departments under the control of a single informa- tion management system, ensuring that manage- ment, planning, designing, development, opera- tions, and maintenance are unified under the same umbrella. At the same time, Hongta Group has defined the relevant business processes in accor- dance with newly issued standard operating proce- dures for its production factories. The application of information technology will inevitably bring about great changes in the way people communicate and cooperate. Following the example of Yuxi Cigarette Factory, many compa- nies in Yunnan province have tried to apply simi- lar working mechanisms for innovation including the idea of forming more "cross-functional" teams to remove departmental barriers, strengthen effec- tive operations, modernize working processes, keep promoting the precision and efficiency of business processes, streamline coordination of business within their enterprises, and make the leading lines smoother and more effective. Since the degree of market dynamics has kept strength- ening, that geographical advantages and industrial boundaries have been minimized. Local tobacco manufacturers have tired hard to strengthened cooperation within the entire business chain with suppliers, interested parties, and their customers, developing an atmosphere of openness, together- ness, mutual benefit and achieve win-win results. Lower consumption of energy and higher ef- ficiency are also two of the benefits brought about by IT integration into the production stream. The use of a new generation of information tech- nologies embodied by the internet, the internet of things (IoT) and cloud computing is bringing about great opportunities for the tobacco industry to revitalize their own production facilities, but of no less importance, the entire manufacturing sec- tor in the province. Today, both information technology and the manufacturing industry are undergoing this pro- cess. In-depth integration between IT and manu- facturing capacities will not only lead to changes in the management and operation of enterprises, but will also, more significantly, change their way of thinking, as well as the general behavior of people. Smart manufacturing will result in fundamental changes in the industry. Oriented toward the fu- ture, the tobacco industry has always managed to adapt itself to the trends of development and ben- efit from favorable opportunities to realize greater business success thanks to constant innovation and development that never stops. Another manufacturing workshop

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