InterforBased in Burnaby, British Columbia, and operating as one of North America’s largest lumber manufacturing producers with $1.4B in revenue, Interfor was seeking a solution that would enable maintenance to be streamlined and downtime minimized in order for key performance indicators to be realized and operating margins to be maximized. Furthermore, with over 3K employees and 17 mills and plants, the organization needed a scalable solution that would allow effective standardization of business-critical equipment—ultimately, Interfor required a system known for its high reliability and its ability to achieve real results.

Business Growth & Multiple Acquisitions Create Unique Challenges

Since 2010, Interfor has engaged in an aggressive acquisition strategy, which has not only expanded operations but also made the business itself more complex. Company leadership realized that processes and procedures related to preventative maintenance and purchasing needed to be significantly overhauled and harmonized in order to prevent unnecessary costs, minimize the risk of repetitive or inaccurate data appearing in the system, and reduce redundant maintenance processes.  Plus, as the company operates in a highly competitive commodity market it was important that Interfor have the opportunity to negotiate between price agreements and contracts with suppliers in order to keep overhead costs controlled and realize targeted profit margins.

DigitalThinker partnered with Interfor and developed a plan to roll out Hexagon EAM while also promoting a significant cultural shift in best practices related to preventative maintenance and other key functions.  It was not enough to simply introduce a new software platform—it was also necessary to ensure all Interfor employees understood why changes were being made and why realizing a culture centered on continuous improvement was key to the company’s overall success.

Implementing Changes & Achieving Real-Time Results

With coaching and training by the team at DigitalThinker, Interfor began using Hexagon EAM to facilitate valuable information sharing as well as the exchanging of key insights into how maintenance could be optimized. They also built upon established processes and aligned facilities that all used similar equipment in their manufacturing work to operate more cross-functionally together.

Additionally, Interfor was able to leverage data analytics that monitored equipment proactively to predict and prevent failure while simultaneously devising a roadmap that was key in realizing a transition to a predictive maintenance system. Hexagon EAM allowed Interfor to examine history related to parts replacement, maintenance schedules, safety requirements and compliance factors, and also past notes input by staff members. Hexagon EAM has ultimately made all of this extensive information accessible in real time—and easily stored.

And the results speak for themselves.  Through the deployment of Hexagon EAM, Interfor has achieved:

  • Quick and rapid deployment spanning 17 facilities
  • Attaining 80% scheduled work vs. break-in work alongside 95% mill availability
  • Reporting that occurs in real time and in support of predictive maintenance plans
  • PM compliance measured on a weekly basis

Looking to What’s Next

Interfor has fully embraced their new culture based on continuous improvement and ongoing transformation. As such, they are eager to be able to leverage Hexagon EAM’s mobile platform in the very near future—and DigitalThinker is excited for the chance to once again help them harness all that this innovative technology has to offer.

Through the mobile application, paper lists will officially be a thing of the past and technicians will be able to access maintenance checklists and specifications right when they need them.  Additionally, as maintenance is performed, it will be recorded automatically into EAM along with supporting photos. This will truly allow maintenance staff members, schedulers, and planners to expeditiously identify the root causes when there are equipment problems—thereby realizing work orders that are increasingly accurate and complete.

DigitalThinker would love to speak with your organization about how we can help you achieve productivity and profitability results just like Interfor.  Reach out today and let’s start talking about how Hexagon EAM can make your business better.

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