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Manufacturing Analytics

Latest News, Product Innovations, Fairs and much more




LANTEK LINK is the magazine of Lantek Sheet Metal Solutions

COVER Anonymous
















Lantek as a member of FMA’s Software Technology Council


Oxiplant - Lantek integrates the entire business process of the company





Data-based decisions

Manufacturing Analytics

LANTEK MARKETING TEAM Patricia Ruiz de Sabando Diana Sánchez Editors Juan José Colás Marketing Director

Lantek Synergy, the advanced vision of the production chain

SUBSCRIPTIONS Marketing Department

“Touch & Play” state-of-the-art technological innovation

Lantek Services Lantek Hint: Lantek Flex3d 5x

Chris Kuehl Managing Director, Armada Corporate Intelligence

Customer Analytics

Lantek, the Digital Transformation of sheet metal companies in Düsseldorf. Next Trade Shows




Data-based decisions

ompanies in our industry are more conscious everyday about their need to digitally transform. However, they are facing the challenge of how it is to be adopted in their organization. The same questions are present: Is my company ready and sufficiently mature to make the necessary changes for digital transformation? What are the initial barriers and challenges we will face? Will we access quality data and will these data allow us to identify patterns that lead to better decision-making? According to a report from Forbes Insights and consulting firm Ernst & Young, based on feedback from 1,500 executives from large corporations worldwide, 66% of companies with a well-defined analytics strategy improve their operation margins and profits by more than 15%. Regardless of the degree of digitalization of a plant, it is imperative to have data on each of its processes to have a clear vision that enables better decision-making. For the data to be useful, it will be necessary to count on a well-defined selection criterion and quality data. Data Analytics will then be critical to enable future-looking decision-making processes. In this process, aided by specific software and other technology tools, management will be able to make the best decisions at all times in terms of production schedules, maintenance, processes, inventory management, and prevention of potential scenarios that could delay production and hence correct these issues. There is no excuse for our industry, and every company in it, not to adopt the digital transformation and take a step forward.

Juan JosĂŠ ColĂĄs


main topic Manufacturing Analytics BUSINESS VALUES CEOs ask themselves questions about how to improve their businesses. Why should I use Manufacturing Analytics in my company? Is it because it is a trend in the industry, and it is very cool to have it? Or, is it because of the ability to discover patterns and trends within our historical data and progress from reactive to proactive decision-making? The Lantek MES (Manufacturing Execution System) is still the backbone of the manufacturing process. It is the shop-floor, the manufacturing and the enterprise-wide processes, and the continuous improvement, that really drives efficiency. Data Analytics will make these dramatically more effective than before, but will definitely not replace them. An extended-MES enriched with data insights is the actual answer to the improvement of the manufacturing processes in the new Industry 4.0 paradigm. This is provided by Lantek Synergy. It is not what you know, it is what you do with what you know. Data Analytics helps you to know and understand much more much faster. Data Analytics combines powerful, fully automated discovery and analysis technologies that let manufacturers use enterprise data to improve all facets of their operations, such as: ordering parts and components, setting production schedules, predicting machine maintenance, forecasting inventory needs, discovering processes bottlenecks, maintaining product quality, and at the end of the day, satisfying customers. METHODS In a typical Data Analytics project the workflow can be summarized by the CRISP-DM process (see graphic)

Data Analytics Workflow

Business Understanding. First ask the questions, then look for the data (not the other way around). You need to have a deep understanding of your business. Many consulting companies fail to understand the complexity of customers’ businesses. Lantek knows the way! Data Preparation: Data quality is critical. Most of the time invested (around 60% to 80%) in a Data Analytics project deals with data collection, preparation, profiling, cleaning, and working to prepare a useful table (dataset) used later with Machine Learning. If the data quality is low, then you get -- garbage in and garbage out! Modeling: Machine learning (ML) is the motor that drives data science. Each ML method takes in data, turns it into a Data Model, and generates an answer. ML methods do the part of data science that is the trickiest to explain. That is where the mathematical magic happens.

Data Models assume that the future will behave in a similar way as the past. Unforeseen events, like a world financial crisis or a natural disaster, cannot be integrated in the data model. It is worth mentioning that the data models always make a prediction with a probability associated to it. We are all used to weather forecasting and there the associated probability is always present.

as Business Intelligence, the historical data is visualized with powerful and interactive software tools. Decision makers can identify considerably more about their businesses and translate that knowledge into improved decision making. Dashboards such as the OEE are created in real time as are found in Lantek Synergy Manufacturing Analytics solutions.

Evaluation: At this stage, you’ll assess the value of your models for meeting the business goals and consider the risks when the model probability is low or it classifies with FalsePositives and False-Negatives.

• Diagnostic: Why a problem is happening (Root cause analysis, inference) Identifies the cause(s) of a manufacturing problem, such as why a process has a bottleneck or why the quality is low.

Deployment: When your model is ready to use, you will need a strategy for putting it to work in your business. An often-overlooked issue is that this deployment is only possible with a high company maturity and with workers willing to adopt the new data-driven processes.

• Predictive: What is likely to happen (Forecasting) With predictive analytics, there is a look into the future. Predicted Machine Maintenance, Inventory prediction, Demand forecasting are typical applications.


• Prescriptive: What do I need to do (Automation) Automated manufacturing systems need to make real-time decisions based on data and take fully automated actions, creating an autonomous cyber-physical system.

Data Analytics Types and its use in Manufacturing Analytics: • Descriptive: What is happening (Visualization) With descriptive analytics, also well known


solutions Lantek Synergy, the advanced vision of the production chain

Lantek Synergy is our new Advanced Manufacturing product. It includes: a multicompany and multi-plant approach, a sectional view of the entire production chain, from suppliers to the end customer, and five separate modules, the implementation of which will represent a full digital transformation according to 4.0 industry standards. The first Lantek Synergy module, Manufacturing Analytics, will allow our clients to manage production data in real time, capturing, analyzing and viewing the most relevant data in the production chain. It will also analyze and view all available historical data, with all the advantages

of our most advanced BI (Business Intelligence) module. For this purpose and with the goal to improve efficiency and usability, the Manufacturing Analytics module will focus on three main “dashboards�: 1. OEE (Overall Equipment Effectiveness): From a global vision of a corporation, integrated by several companies and production plants, to the detailed performance of each work center and each machine. We can present at any time, the level of efficiency of the entire corporation for a specific period of time, as

Customize the view of all of your company’s production KPI with Lantek Synergy Manufacturing Analytics

a general KPI (Key Performance Indicator) or itemized in each of its metrics (availability, performance and quality). 2. Machine Conditioning: We will be able to view, in real time, the status of each work center of the corporation, showing the status and the reasons for that status. Additionally, it will generate alerts according to specific quality parameters, analyzing and viewing consolidated data, by a specific period of time, by plant, or by machine model and technology. This module analyzes and views for each work center, the current status and the historical status based on schedules, offering information on different capacities and produced parts.

• MES: Correct and incorrect parts, stock, productivity, performance... by supplier, by material, by dates, by amount, by work center, etc. • CAD/CAM: Number of nested processes, percentage of waste, percentage of use of materials, … by supplier, by material, by dates, by amounts, etc. All this information can be analyzed (in each module, based on permissions) either as consolidated data or itemized into different levels, by plant, by customer, by material, etc. and for the desired time periods, live and from any device.

3. Inventory: It enables the analysis, both globally and detailed, by plant or warehouse, of basic KPIs for correct stock management, such as WIP (Work In Process), stock status by material, quantity of leftover material, scrap metal, and all of it in real time. Or, it may analyze by desired time period, with an alert functionality based on the values defined by the customer.

We have developed a solution with a powerful BI engine, which from any web client, with a simple and “responsive” interface and together with our role and permissions management, will not only allow each profile in a company to access its relevant information when necessary, but also to activate email notifications or alerts for desired events: unplanned stop, stock break, production error, OEE < X %, etc.

Furthermore, in a generic manner, Manufacturing Analytics will enable the incorporation of the basic BI (Business Intelligence) module associated with each of the main Lantek products (Integra, Manager, Flex3d, or Expert) so that according to each user’s access permissions, the most relevant data and KPIs can be analyzed for:

Also, if you want to connect our BI modules with another BI or ERP solution, Lantek has integration “gateways” with the main standards and products in the market.

• CRM: Active operations, customers, contacts,… by type, by dates, by amounts, etc. • E R P : I n v o i c i n g , e s t i m a t e s , o rd e r s , purchases,… by dates, by amount, by plant, etc.

With Lantek Synergy Manufacturing Analytics you can customize the view of your company’s production KPI. Define and assign access roles and permissions. Enable and configure messaging and alert modules and share information as desired to enable the most efficient decision-making process in each situation, with the appropriate data.



Chris Kuehl Managing Director, Armada Corporate Intelligence

The impact of digitization in the industry’s economy Technological advances in manufacturing are undoubtedly shifting the economic landscape and shaping the future of our industry. Lantek USA had the unique opportunity to interview Dr. Chris Kuehl, Economic Analyst for the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, to take a closer look at how technology has impacted our industry’s economy and what it means for the future of manufacturers, particularly in the United States. Are you aware of any statistics regarding the average savings of factories who have Digitized? Are the impacts of Digitization being monitored? If so, what trends are you seeing? I am not aware of any specific statistics or studies out yet. I do not know of any concentrated effort to monitor at this point. I know it has been a topic of conversation with how appropriate digitization will be. At this point it is anecdotal evidence being it is still a very new concept for the industry. Regarding the Artificial Intelligence aspects of Industry 4.0 and the sheet metal fabrication industry, there are likely welcomed benefits like Big Data predictions, but there are also fears that robots will replace jobs. Do you see any trends of jobs lost to robotics? I think what is happening right now is a lot of very basic manufacturing jobs have been replaced by automation and robotics. With material handling systems and things of that nature we have seen unskilled jobs replaced. The skilled worker jobs have been more of a collaboration using robotics. This does mean there have probably been fewer hires with one or two people working with robotics instead of three or four without robotics. Most robotics that companies have applied to their shop floors are rudimentary right now. What we are seeing right now is the replacement of more mechanical and human activities where people may have used machines on repetitive tasks. In summation, it has probably had little impact on the skilled workers; but, the unskilled workers have been replaced more so by robots in the repetitive tasks.

It seems that, in America at least, Millennials were discouraged from learning a Trade and instead sent off to college for a “higher” education. Could you explain how this is impacting sheet metal fabricators as well as employment now and in the near future? There has been a trend for the last 20-30 years that people were being expected to go to college and learn a white collar profession with not much thought into a career path. This is changing in the sense that there are new jobs in the sector that we no longer have facilities to train for. There are too few community colleges and trade schools which has led to a chronic shortage in manufacturing. This is something that is reversible by getting into the heads of students, parents, teachers, and counselors that there is a future in manufacturing. More than anything else, there is a perception that we are no longer going to be a manufacturing nation. This is wrong; we will always be a manufacturing nation and will continue to grow as one in the future.

We will always be a manufacturing nation and will grow as one in the future

The impact of digitization is monitored Do you see the learning of a Trade, and potentially not being buried in Student Loan debt, coming back in favor? Yes, I think it is starting to. We are now seeing students think: “What exactly am I going to do for a living and what is the most practical way to go through this?” There is no secure way with a Bachelor’s degree now to get a job out of college like in the past. We are now seeing manufacturing become a more sophisticated job with higher pay scales. The reason students go to college now is to set themselves up for a job after college, even if they may not be fully vested in what they studied. Given the current economic trends and technological advances, would you say we can see manufacturing returning stateside for years to come? Yes, I think so. We are seeing a dramatic shift away from thinking manufacturing overseas is cheaper. Three factors contribute to this: 1) these countries are no longer low wage, low cost countries we have thought them to be, 2) transportation costs, which have always been high, continue to grow, so having to move product across the ocean or by rail is adding to the overall price, and 3) the use of automation and robotics is making companies more competitive in the United States. Where manufacturers used to have to be as labor intensive as competitors, they do not anymore. I think the main factor now for manufacturers is, “How close can we stay to our market or should we seek other places that are extremely cheap but distant from our customer?



Victor de la Iglesia OEM Channel of Lantek

“Touch & Play” state-of-the-art technological innovation

In its effort to boost new technologies and as the leader in the international CAD/CAM market, Lantek has developed “Touch&Play” a Lantek Inside module that encompasses more than 30 years of experience from Lantek in the sheet metal processing industry and features new augmented reality technologies.

development of new technologies, adding “Touch&Play” functionality to this versatile product. With “Touch&Play,” reusing leftover material with a complex geometry, something which was previously complicated, now becomes trivial thanks to the new augmented reality system.

Although Lantek Inside is not a new product, Lantek has been working on it for over 4 years, it offers machinery manufacturers a software solution to include in their controls, with significant advantages. These include the ability to edit machined parts right at the machine, generate newly machined parts, add or remove parts, etc. This gives the end operator more versatility to maximize the use of the materials and execution times, thus reducing the response time, because changes can be made at the machine without having to go back to the office to make these adjustments. Additionally, as all the information about the parts to be cut is in the software, printing of further documentation is unnecessary. The direct connection between the office software and the plant software allows the operators to have the information on the work to perform as soon as the work is generated.

A camera installed in the machine will show a live image of the leftover material to use; and, by means of an intuitive interface, the desired parts may be positioned on the sheet. The system shows the parts virtually positioned on the actual sheet, which allows the operator to avoid holes or damaged areas.

As if all of these advantages were not enough, Lantek has gone one step further in the

The system provides the option to import parts from previous machining processes, optimizing the user’s response to the common production needs to redo damaged or lost parts by using any previously generated small leftover pieces of material without intermediate procedures, such as sheet alignment and measuring, thus significantly streamlining production processes. Thanks to this new functionality, Lantek Inside has become a powerful ally in reducing costs and improving efficiency. Lantek has positioned itself once again as a spearhead in global technological innovation.



Javier Román Key Account Manager Roberto Uriarte Head of Software Development

Customer Analytics Although everyone recognizes the importance of analyzing actual and potential customers, in reality many companies are not yet efficiently using the data available to them. At Lantek, with over 30 years of experience in the global market and more than 19,000 customers, our history has shown us that it is imperative not only to know our customers’ behavior and potential, but also to be able to forecast market needs early enough to appropriately address them. Our customers’ have two ways to do that. Up until recently, they not only needed human intelligence to maximize added value; but, they also needed to register all of their customers’ data and operations, perform market segmentations or group them by regions, industries and time-frames (seasons) days or hours, as applicable, and had analysis tools to interactively improve the management of their goals. KPIs such as CLV (Customer Lifetime Value), Customer Equity, or Customer Retention help them segment and analyze their client base, as well as identify opportunities or improve their campaigns. The other way to do it is centered in the use of Machine Learning technology that is enabling them, thanks to the self-learning capability of new solutions, to find patterns and predict the behavior of their existing or prospective customers. In this manner, they can forecast necessary Stock and inventory, anticipating and optimizing purchases, or perform Smart Quoting, automating offers and calculating margins based on the smart customer classification (defining probabilities, typifying customers, and even classifying competitors, etc.)

Furthermore, Customer Analytics will enable them to forecast demand, which will allow them to optimize the need for resources, both human and material (work centers or warehouses); and, will offer the possibility to perform an automatic segmentation of their customers based on Clustering algorithms. Not only from the point of view of demand, but from the perspective of portfolio maintenance, the use of Customer Analytics gives users the opportunity to improve abandonment rates, predicting, which customers or groups of customers have a greater risk, and giving us the possibility to carry out preventive commercial actions. In any scenario, the first step a company must take is to involve its management team in the process. The success from a good customer analysis not only depends on having the right tools, but also on two key factors: creating a cross-culture focused on client-based strategic decisions and requiring excellence in detail when analyzing customers. A good customer analysis will enable companies to connect sales and the operations plan (S&OP) to the operations/execution plan, which is one of the biggest challenges for a manufacturer.


news Lantek as a member of FMA’s Software Technology Council benefits of software solutions and automation. “We are pleased to have Adria join our Software Technology Council,” states Ashly Lantz, Education Products Specialist for FMA. “Adria offers valuable insights into the digitization of manufacturing. This topic is top of mind for our members, so we look forward to her support in the coming year.” Haines has robust experience in the CAD/ CAM market. With an educational background in Computer Science from the University of Cincinnati, Haines began her career developing and supporting CAD/CAM software. She went on to serve as an Application Engineer, demonstrating and implementing CAD/ CAM Interoperability projects to Fortune 500 manufacturers, before landing in her favorite role – crafting solutions for customers.

Lantek is proud to announce the appointment of Lantek USA Director, Adria Haines, to the Fabricators & Manufacturer’s Association, International (FMA) Software Technology Council. As one of only nine members on the council, Haines brings 20 years of expertise in CAD/CAM and manufacturing solutions software. FMA’s Software Technology Council is comprised of volunteer leaders that provide FMA members and the industry unbiased information about the

“I’m a problem-solver by nature,” stated Haines. “Once I began working closely with clients in real-world manufacturing, I was hooked. To see the impact my work has in saving time and money for manufacturers is truly satisfying.” In 2009, Lantek selected Haines to assemble a US team as part of their mission to help sheet metal companies digitize their processes with the most innovative software products and services. She has been key in the launch of Advanced Solutions, Lantek’s new offering for the Digital Transformation of Sheet Metal companies. “Today I am helping my clients learn Industry 4.0 technologies and how to achieve their digitization goals. I am honored to be chosen for the FMA Software Council and hope that my knowledge of CAD/CAM, Nesting, Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES), ERP and Integrated Smart Factory will be an asset to their mission,” added Haines.


partners Oxiplant - Lantek integrates the entire business process of the company Oxiplant is a company headquartered in the Tabaza Industrial Park, near the city of Avilés, Asturias, Spain. Its facilities have a surface area of 6,500 square meters (about 70,000 square feet) and are perfectly equipped to move and handle large metal sheets. Oxiplant has already been relying on Lantek for some time as a technology partner for the advanced management of its production process, including cutting, transforming, and marketing metal products from industrial sheets to metal profiles and pipes. The efficiency, precision, and control of the entire process is critical for this company and therefore, 7 of its most important machines are controlled by various Lantek solutions, such as Lantek Expert, Lantek Workshop, or Lantek Integra. Oxiplant Director, Ignacio García Uría, points out that one of the main reasons why they chose Lantek was “the possibility of integrating the entire business process in one single tool, from the supply phase to the delivery of the

product, including purchasing, production, and inventory management.” García Uría states that Lantek’s solutions have been very well received by the over 40 employees of the company, “As with any other change, at the beginning it was a bit hard because of the need to adapt to the new systems, but once this was achieved, the response became very good and the changes are currently being 100% utilized.” He described Lantek’s software as “completely useful” both for management and for follow-up. Lantek’s solutions have enabled Oxiplant to improve its advanced manufacturing processes in cutting, transforming, marketing metal products, and integrating the entire management in a single tool, which provides better control and higher performance. This innovative option translates into a better end result which is a great benefit for the customers of this Asturian company.



If you are interested in any of these services, send us your contact info to and one of our sales representatives will be pleased to give you all the information you need.

Lantek Hint

Lantek Flex3d 5x

Did you know that when you select contour points to modify vectors, Lantek Flex3d 5x will automatically select all points in the contour if you select the first point by right-clicking on it?

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facts Lantek, the Digital Transformation of sheet metal companies in Düsseldorf

Lantek attended as exhibitor Schweissen & Schneiden 2017 Trade Show, which was held from 25th to 29th of September in Düsseldorf (Germany). Lantek presented there the portfolio of Solutions Lantek for the Sheet Metal Industry.

Next Trade Shows FABTECH 2017






Chicago USA

Stuttgart GERMANY

Madrid SPAIN

Albers Commercial Kitchen Services

Success along the Digital Path “In June 2014, our company went from pencil and paper to Lantek and a new Fiber Optic Laser. What an incredible journey it’s been as both the software and laser have allowed us to achieve triple digit growth within the same facility footprint over a short period of time!” Tom Westby

Executive Vice President

We know the way |

Lantek Link - October 2017  

Lantek´s External Magazine

Lantek Link - October 2017  

Lantek´s External Magazine