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Oracle of Delphi

GM center troubleshoots IT in plants around the world

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Here is something a little closer to my GM heart! Just call me one of the troops from Europe! :AH-HA_wink:

Ralph Kisiel

Automotive News

June 23, 2008 - 12:01 am ET

DETROIT — On June 10, production of General Motors' hot-selling Chevrolet Malibu threatened to grind to a halt at the Fairfax assembly plant in Kansas City, Kan., because of a computer hardware problem.

Enter GM's Global Command and Control Center.

The center, in Pontiac, Mich., acts as a window into operations at GM's 185 manufacturing plants around the world. It closely monitors factory networks, servers and critical manufacturing software applications.

The center identified and fixed the problem in Fairfax's production information and control system before it escalated.

"I think we lost three or four units but made them up" later in the day, says Kirk Gutmann, GM process information officer for global manufacturing and quality. "We got it resolved before we had any outages, so it was basically transparent to the plant."

By combining the Fairfax plant's resources with those of the center, GM contained the problem in 10 to 15 minutes and resolved it in 45 minutes, Gutmann says.

"It worked. If it hadn't, we would have scrambled a lot more troops from Europe as well as other parts of the globe," he says. "It's a pretty important plant for GM right now."

Thanks to the center, GM has reduced dramatically the number of lost units that result from information technology problems in factories.

The goal is to detect problems earlier, resolve them faster and prevent little problems from escalating into crises that stop production.

The center was globally operational by January. GM has been working progressively with more plants since 2005.

Fewer IT woes at GM

A global information technology monitoring center has helped GM reduce production losses from IT-related problems. The center has

- Significantly cut the number of lost units (vehicles not produced) in the past 2 years

- Reduced by 27% lost manufacturing minutes through May, compared with a year earlier

- Reduced by 46% the mean time to repair IT-related problems through May

Source: GM, EDS

When a manufacturing plant encounters an IT problem, GM has three levels of defense.

First, each plant monitors potential issues with the IT network, applications and infrastructure.

A second level of monitoring exists at three Regional Command Centers in Ruesselsheim, Germany; Sao Caetano, Brazil; and Pontiac. In 2009, a fourth center will open in South Korea.

The highest level of intervention is the Global Command and Control Center, near GM's Pontiac truck assembly plant. The center takes daily "health checks" based on data it receives from servers in every GM factory, says Jerry Fullmer, EDS Corp.'s leader of the center.

GM developed the center with EDS. EDS operates it.

When a problem reaches the global center, the center summons the "top dogs," says Gutmann. They come from such IT suppliers as EDS, Cisco Systems Inc., IBM Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co. and Sun Microsystems Inc.

GM also taps the knowledge of its eight Centers of Expertise, created by the company to maintain manufacturing applications. Each is based in a key plant and is devoted to a specific set of applications.

Link: http://www.autonews.com/article/20080623/ANA03/806230315

Edited by Pontiac Custom-S
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Now if only GM could somehow create and implement a technology, that by using elaborate mind control processes, subliminally convinces everyone who abandoned their products in the 90s and early 2000s to revisit a Chevy showroom, or else they'll completely lose all of the feeling in their genitalia. Maybe through TV and XM radio? :rotflmao:

Actually, all kidding aside, being someone who is interested in computers, technology, supply chain and manufacturing, these kinds of articles are cool.

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