A firefighter stands in front of a burning house, knowing she needs to get to a second-floor bedroom, where a child waits to be rescued. Everything between the place where she currently stands and the outcome she must achieve is a data point.

The distance between the sidewalk and the front door.

The temperature inside the home.

The amount of smoke choking the stairwell.

The space between the second-floor windows and the frozen ground waiting below.

It really is all data. It’s all information on a map that can help predict the likelihood that the firefighter will arrive at her destination, which is a safe child placed in his parents’ arms. The more data the firefighter has, and the more reliable the data, the better her odds are of being able to plan for and achieve her goal.

Accurate Data a Necessity of Predictive Planning

Regardless of the industry or profession, that’s all predictive planning is: The ability to make informed predictions about achievable future outcomes using advanced data analytics. Predictive planning might be a buzzword right now, but it is the rare buzzword based on a fundamental truth.

Whether you fight fires or manufacture medical devices, you need to have all the data you can get.

And that data needs to be accurate and delivered in real-time.

Unfortunately, discrete manufacturers often lack the data they need to deploy anything resembling predictive planning. Their data is trapped in multiple incompatible systems and machines. Or they gather lots of data but have no way of using it. Or they lack the data needed to submit accurate bids. Too many discrete manufacturers don’t have an accurate read on machine utilization rates, and/or what’s driving those rates. They don’t have a good—or even okay—feel for setup, downtimes, run rates, and a host of other critical manufacturing analytics.

Their shop floor might be metaphorically burning, and although managers have the will to rush in and save the building and anyone in it, the missing data means a diminished ability to predict and create a positive outcome. Plant managers and owners often do not know how to solve a problem simply because they don’t have the real-time, data-driven insight to turn a smoldering fire into a blazing success.

What they don’t know is that access to data can make even the boldest plans a reality.

AMF Focuses on Predictive Planning To Drive Success

All Metals Fabricating, a discrete manufacturer in Texas, has a plan to become the best and most automated contracted discrete manufacturer in the world by 2030. As far as predictive planning goes, it is an audacious goal—and one that requires a significant amount of data-driven, real-time insight.

And getting the data they need by implementing Alora by Data Inventions on their shop floor has pushed All Metals Fabricating toward their predicted goal.

"Initially, it was all the data monitoring that was the big appeal,” said Lance Thrailkill, the company’s CEO. “Then we got into the dashboards and analytics, and I realized real-time insight goes hand in hand with what we’re doing here.”

What Lance and his team are doing is implementing a plan to become the best in the world, and they can predict their outcome because they now have the data they need. Their map has filled in, making the likelihood that they reach their predicted destination even more certain—and that isn’t hype.

Access to data-driven, real-time insight has helped the company improve its machine utilization rates by as much as 152%.

Get the Tools You Need for Predictive Planning

Predictive planning is an old idea. Whether you rescue people or build things, you need to have a goal and a strategy to achieve that goal. That strategy is infinitely more likely to work when discrete manufacturers have the data they need.

Alora by Data Inventions delivers that data.

From traditional KPIs like machine utilization rates and shop floor efficiency to specialized KPIs designed to measure unique aspects of your plant’s performance, Alora by Data Inventions gives discrete manufacturers the data they need to plan for and achieve big things.

Like being the best contracted discrete manufacturer in the world.

Don’t let a fire of bad data or no data consume your plant’s ability to use predictive planning as a key strategic tool. Start populating your map with the information you need, and your shop floor will be able to predict and create a future you could once barely imagine.