Customer Stories: WineWorks – IIoT Technologies Deliver Maintenance Efficiencies at NZ’s Largest Independent Wine Bottling Company

When WineWorks partnered with Facteon to begin its Industrial IoT (IIoT) maintenance journey in 2018, it was utilising an in-house designed maintenance system. The WineWorks team was looking to take a more structured and proactive approach to maintenance.

WineWorks operates nine bottling lines across its three sites in Marlborough, Hawkes Bay and Auckland, New Zealand. The WineWorks team was looking to implement a single maintenance solution to streamline maintenance activities across its facilities.

WineWorks Yesterday: The Business Challenges

A key business challenge facing WineWorks surrounded the organisation of historical data across three sites. This analysis serves as the foundation of future maintenance planning. For the WineWorks team, there was significant value in better understanding historical trends, particularly at a cross-facility level.

“We recognised the need to perform maintenance in a more structured way. It also served as a necessary exercise in reflecting on the ways in which we had previously performed maintenance across our facilities. Each site had different processes and systems. So, we could see what worked well and where we could improve”, says Chris Brady, Engineering Manager at WineWorks Hawkes Bay.

After setting the foundation for future maintenance, the WineWorks team was equipped to benefit from improved visibility of site performance, the sharing of knowledge between sites and access to common spare parts for maintenance.

Wayne Bester, Engineering Manager at WineWorks Marlborough, speaks to the disconnect between the three sites: “While we always endeavor to share maintenance best practice, it’s inevitable that such knowledge sharing isn’t always a top priority, particularly during peak periods in which our focus is on meeting customer demand. The adoption of an IIoT software system specifically designed for maintenance allowed us to streamline processes”.

The streamlining of maintenance processes went hand in hand with reviewing historical data. The WineWorks team had an opportunity to review best practice and to better understand how maintenance is performed across the three facilities. A significant advantage is that immediate cost savings were identified. Common spare parts used across the facilities are now stored at a single location for centralised distribution.

WineWorks Today: Streamlined & Smart Maintenance

Following the implementation of an IIoT maintenance solution, WineWorks has complete confidence in the service it is providing. It also means that the WineWorks production teams are well supported. They can now access accurate spare parts availability data in real-time. The team is also able to schedule preventative maintenance.

Chris elaborates: “The move to preventative maintenance was significant for a business which previously performed maintenance based on past trends. Despite WineWorks not regularly experiencing unexpected breakdowns, the team can now have greater confidence that all maintenance tasks have been completed on time. As a contract bottling company, the preventative maintenance element is particularly valuable as we can schedule maintenance during quieter periods”.

The shift to preventative maintenance has now allowed managers on the factory floor to focus on high value tasks, rather than trouble shooting and manual analysis of past trends.

For WineWorks, predictive maintenance serves as an interim step towards preventative maintenance. This incremental approach is key to WineWorks’ success on its IIoT maintenance journey. 

Another significant advantage has been visibility at a cross-site level. As a service provider to many of New Zealand’s wineries, continuous improvement is central to WineWorks retaining its position as a market leader. The connectivity across sites allows for ease of maintenance, sharing of common spare parts to reduce inventory levels and knowledge sharing.

Furthermore, a central element is the ability to trust that all maintenance tasks have been completed on time and logged accurately. As many manufacturers will know, coordinating shifts poses challenges in regard to ensuring the accurate handover of information at the end of each shift. For that reason, the recording of maintenance tasks in real-time within a modern IIoT system ensures the information is available without delay across any device.

“Concerns around data inaccuracy can occur when you have people manually entering data into a system or transcribing it. This concern is magnified when you have one person recording the data on a clipboard and another entering in into a digitised system”, says Wayne.

WineWorks Tomorrow: Industry 4.0 as a Design Standard

“Our long-term vision is to provide sustainable, cost-focused and safety-driven service that wine producers can trust to take their products to the world. For that reason, the world-class equipment we operate and the service we offer must be supported by Industry 4.0 and IIoT technologies”, says Chris. WineWorks has now implemented Industry 4.0 as a design standard.

The WineWorks team is continuously working to modernise their machinery and processes to ensure the delivery of a cost-effective and high-quality service. Backed by improved visibility over machinery performance and maintenance, WineWorks is now able to focus on achieving incremental improvements across its three facilities.

At their core, IIoT technologies make every process smarter. The WineWorks team has achieved unmatched visibility through the selective deployment of robust and secure IIoT software and hardware across multiple sites.

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Reinaldo  Silva

Reinaldo Silva

Head of Digital Manufacturing & Automation

Reinaldo leads Facteon's digital manufacturing and automation team that is responsible for the development and implementation of our portfolio of digital products along with the delivery of robotics and automation projects for manufacturing industries. He works closely with our Principal Engineer and our R&D team on the development and validation of our Portfolio Extension roadmap that combines digital and engineering concepts and the application of emerging technologies, such as computer vision and AI, to solve complex manufacturing challenges.