Gluten-free bread manufacturer goes paperless with TilliT

See how Lifestyle Bakery started its smart manufacturing journey by using TilliT to improve operational efficiency, reduce downtime, and guide operators on the shop floor.

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Client:

Lifestyle Bakery is a gluten-free manufacturer of bread and bread-type products based in South Australia and servicing the main retailers around Australia.

Experiencing 20 per cent or more annual growth as a business, Lifestyle Bakery aimed to increase productivity and support management to work more efficiently as the business grew.

Challenge:

Producing 2,000 loaves an hour in their 3,600m2 manufacturing facility, Lifestyle Bakery was entirely paper-based. All quality assurance and other critical operational information were recorded on paper while equipment failures or other non-conformances had to be manually reviewed by operators, disrupting operations for up to an hour.  

Lifestyle Bakery aimed to increase visibility into their efficiencies, processes, and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) while removing the paper from the factory floor. Originally aiming to increase equipment automation, after consulting with TilliT, Lifestyle Bakery realized that digitalizing operations could support rapid growth by improving overall efficiencies with a faster return on investment (ROI). 

Solution: 

Lifestyle Bakery used TilliT to remove paper from its operations, while synchronizing operators’ tasks via a connected digital workflow. TilliT allowed both the management and operations teams to better understand their efficiencies, improve processes, measure downtime in equipment, and respond to issues on the shop floor thanks to enhanced real-time visibility. 

TilliT-Lifestyle-Bakery-shop-floor-2
Concept and installation | Timeline: 3-4 months 

Learning about TilliT through SAGE Group, Lifestyle Bakery was initially searching for an automation solution before digitalizing its operation. However, after an open discussion with the TilliT team, they saw an opportunity to adopt smart manufacturing, with plans to introduce automation in the future.  

"...The speed and cost to implement TilliT [provided] a lot more return of investment at a quicker speed (than automation)."

Lifestyle Bakery General Manager, Damien Puyenbroek

“We could see that the speed and cost to implement TilliT [provided] a lot more return of investment at a quicker speed, so we decided to go with the Industry 4.0 project first,” Lifestyle Bakery General Manager Damien Puyenbroek said. 

Lifestyle Bakery began its digitalization journey by focusing on one packing line, removing paper from all of its manual operator tasks through TilliT. Critical information on the factory floor was transferred from paper into TilliT.  

Every operator task was modelled in TilliT as a digital workflow, representing and documenting the manufacturing process. TilliT takes this workflow and issues activities to the operators, so they don’t have to keep track of everything they need to do at each moment of the process. Just like your Outlook reminds you of an upcoming meeting, TilliT reminds the operator what their next move is 

Tasks are executed via dynamic digital forms that guide the activity, double-check that the process and product quality are at specification, and records critical data that can be used later to analyze trends and use in audits. 

On top of the manual information gathered by operators, TilliT Edge devices with Photoelectric Wireless Sensors were installed on equipment along the manufacturing line to monitor equipment performance. The sensors were paired to Lifestyle Bakery’s online account, giving them a calculation of OEE immediately, with real-time visibility into order progress, stoppages, and line performance.  

“We were quite impressed early on with what the TilliT system could do,” Damien said. 

“It’s probably the only system we’ve been able to find that could link both [equipment performance and QA systems] together into one system.”  

In approximately three months from concept to go-live, TilliT had already removed a significant amount of paper from the factory floor.  

TilliT-Lifestyle-Bakery-shop-floor

Implementation | Timeline: 3-4 months 

Operators on the shop floor quickly learned to utilize the TilliT platform on a desktop, tablet, or smartphone. Through TilliT, operators are given tasks to follow based on the production stage and the work order life cycle. This guides operators to execute the process and gives complete visibility across the factory floor of the holistic end-to-end production.  

"...TilliT's easy because it prompts you instead of having to remember it all."

Lifestyle Bakery Operator, Morgan Penman

Operator Morgan Penman works in the packing section, at the second last spot on the manufacturing line before the product heads out. 

“I find that TilliT’s easy because it prompts you instead of having to remember it all,” Operator Morgan Penman said.  

“It helps the setup of how many gas checks you want done to make sure the temperatures and everything is right. It has a calculation of how many [products] per carton, how many cartons you do – so in the end you have the right number… you’re not accidentally putting the wrong [product] through,” she said.  

“It also has checks for what product you’re doing, so you don’t mix up and you put the wrong ones out.” 

The TilliT team provided ongoing support throughout the implementation process, which included guiding the quality manager to configure TilliT to model Lifestyle Bakery’s manufacturing process.  

“We found the team had a very good implementation strategy… TilliT’s been really easy to work with, the team have been very adaptable,” Damien said.  

The project’s implementation phase took approximately three months, by which point TilliT was fully integrated into the day-to-day operations at Lifestyle Bakery.  

TilliT-Lifestyle-Bakery-Tablet-Dashboard

The result 

Using TilliT, Lifestyle Bakery now has real-time visibility into process efficiencies, down-times, speeds, and non-conformances on the factory floor, moving closer every day toward an utterly digitized operation. Gaining real-time visibility has allowed Lifestyle Bakery to better understand its manufacturing process, including workforce performance, quality metrics, deviation, and downtime.

"...We can review [our QA checks] in a matter of minutes, which then reduces that waste or problem down to tens of loaves, even single loaves, rather than thousands of loaves."

Lifestyle Bakery General Manager, Damien Puyenbroek

The most significant gains for Lifestyle Bakery have come from TilliT as an operator guide, reducing human errors. During operation execution, TilliT double-checks what is being done by the operators, yielding increased productivity via reducing mistakes and waste. 

“If you’re not looking at things in real-time when you’re producing 2,000 loaves an hour, it might take you half an hour or an hour to look at some of these quality checks, and if something goes wrong, then that’s a lot of product that can go to waste,” Damien said.  

“What TilliT has allowed us to do now is that we can review [our QA checks] in a matter of minutes, which then reduces that waste or problem down to tens of loaves, even single loaves, rather than thousands of loaves.” 

In under a year, TilliT has become an integral part of Lifestyle Bakery’s day-to-day operations, according to Technical Manager Nean Pillay.   

“We use TilliT across the business, from the start where we weigh up our product, right to when we dispatch the product,” he said.  

“[The TilliT team] has been excellent for support, we’ve spent a lot of time on the phone and online, discussing the transition to TilliT, and Raf (TilliT CTO and Co-Founder Rafael Amaral) has been excellent in terms of the support he’s provided.”   

The TilliT team is currently working with Lifestyle Bakery to link more processes on the production line back into the software, including in its packing facilities, to enhance operations further.  

“…What we’re finding now is new and different things that we can put into TilliT such as artificial intelligence and looking at the quality of our product to also go into TilliT,” Damien said. 

“It’s going to be a continuous journey, one that we’re certainly excited to continue on.” 

Key improvements: 

  • Increased throughput. 
  • Reduced product waste. 
  • Reduced auditing time. 
  • Positive release QA checks reduced from 30-60 minutes down to just a few minutes. 

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