Husky's digitized process saves time

April 3, 2019
Husky has introduced a new process for building molds and tooling components that it says will dramatically reduce the time.

Husky Injection Molding Systems has introduced a new process for building molds and tooling components that it says will dramatically reduce the time it takes to develop and deliver these products to its customers. It could potentially be used for other hardware.

As part of the new process, called the Next Generation Operating Model (NGOM), Husky will use a mix of real-world engineering and virtual reality.

Customers from multiple locations can design and customize hardware components through a web interface, and what they create is sent to a digital factory where it is manufactured through an automated process. These virtual and physical environments work together to allow the company to continuously improve its products. This is done by connectivity through the NGOM processes, where information flows upstream and downstream to all users so that Husky’s subject-matter experts can fine-tune the process to improve product quality and speed.

Wesley Grove, Husky’s VP of operations, NGOM, said the company’s new business model streamlines hardware ordering, manufacturing and delivery from what historically had taken several weeks down to a few days or even a few hours.

“NGOM combines breakthrough process development, a foundation of data and information flow and Industry 4.0 technologies to drive speed and efficiencies in delivering our products and services,” Grove said.

New connectivity technologies between Husky and its customers, combined with digitalized processes, enable improved quality in production, he said.

Husky introduced its NGOM technology with two of its business model partners in February at the company’s European headquarters in Dudelange, Luxembourg, after pilot testing it last year. Husky partnered with the Luxembourg government’s departments of economy and labor, and with software provider Siemens AG, Munich, to develop the NGOM.

“Siemens is a leader in Industry 4.0 solutions and has a global footprint like Husky. They have been a key partner, with others, in developing the NGOM solution,” Grove said.

Husky’s European headquarters in Luxembourg and its North American headquarters in Bolton, Ontario, have been the focus of NGOM deployment so far, but the business model is a global initiative involving all business units, according to Grove. The company has 40 sales and service offices, employs approximately 4,000 people worldwide and supports customers in 100 countries. In addition to sites in Canada and Luxembourg, Husky’s main manufacturing facilities are in the U.S., Switzerland, China, India and the Czech Republic.

“We have moved from proof of concept into the industrialization phase and are expanding the program throughout all functions and business units within Husky,” Grove said.

As Husky continues to develop NGOM, it will help the company compete in the global market.

“Continuing changes in global consumer behavior, such as the growing demand for customized products, are changing the way everyone in the industry is providing products and services,” Grove said. “Customers are looking for maximum flexibility in testing the market and then scaling rapidly to production. We feel that NGOM provides us the capability to serve our customers faster and with better quality and see this combination as a very good recipe for growth.”

John Galt, Husky’s president and CEO, said during the NGOM introduction, “The world is experiencing an accelerated pace of digitalization, and it is influencing every aspect of our lives. Husky recognizes this shift, and we have been actively working to embrace digitalization for some time.

“The NGOM program revolutionizes the way we do business, offering enhanced capabilities designed to deliver solutions with unmatched speed and flexibility, reduced overall cost, and a heightened, more accessible experience. Having an end-to-end fully digitalized architecture allows us to leverage our global capability and quickly scale to new opportunities, so that we can enable our customers to be more competitive and effectively respond to continuously changing consumer buying trends,” Galt said.

Bruce Adams, senior staff reporter

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Husky Injection Molding Systems Ltd.  

Bolton, Ontario, 905-951-5000,