Due to travel restrictions, our software engineer Remo is currently commissioning a brew house in Russia from the comfort of his office. In collaboration with ROLEC who supplied the new plant this is happening online. We asked Remo a couple of questions:
Marcel: Who are the members of this online commissioning team?
Remo: The commissioning team consists of two brew masters and a project manager from ROLEC and me. One brew master is on-site in Russia; the other team members are either in the home-office or in their offices in Germany and Switzerland, respectively.
Marcel: What does online commissioning look like? What does a typical workday look like?
Remo: Every morning the team meets at a pre-set time where the tasks for the day are agreed on. We then guide? the on-site brew master through the commissioning process while the other team members are available online to answer any question the brew master might have.
Marcel: Can you imagine to commission plants like this post corona? What are the prerequisites for a successful commissioning?
Remo: For starters, the time difference between locations cannot be too big. In our case, we have a time difference of three hours. What is difficult though, is, that it is not easy to get a feeling for the plant. You do not hear or see what happens if you ask the brew master to initiate a particular action. In addition, the lack of direct contact with the customer makes it challenging to react directly and straightforwardly. To implement handshakes or to identify electrical faults can quickly become a huge challenge.
Having said that, with smaller plants, an online and remote commissioning is definitely worthwhile checking out and therefore travel effort may be reduced. However, I think plants with a certain size and certain complexity should still be commissioned on-site.
The only real advantage is that I can sleep in my own bed! 🙂