Customer Service & Quality Assurance
A Practitioner's Perspective on ETA Project Delivery
"The NBE QA group is engaged in early design stages to ensure the most current, and appropriate, advancements are brought to the design and engineering of every NBE project."
It's well known throughout NBE, that every group; every person, has priority influence when it's a matter of better serving our customers and bringing improvement to a project.
But, the NBE quality assurance group is definitely the central point where these improvements and advancements are collected, analyzed, and then applied to NBE processing projects. This is not an after-the-fact, reaction. The NBE QA group is engaged in early design-stages to ensure the most current, and appropriate, advancements are brought to the design and engineering of every NBE project.
On-site Feedback Brings Tactical Advantages to Application Engineering
The skillset of every NBE customer service field technician is specifically chosen and intentionally developed to enable them to also work in a field-level R&D capacity. The NBE application engineering and QA groups rely heavily on feedback from the field to provide high-level input on matters of process design, as well as tactical-level matters; such as third-party component recommendations. This is legitimate data from our field experts in automation and controls, mechanical engineering, and the licensed trades. In fact, some of our field techs are formerly from the operations side. NBE customer service and quality assurance staff contribute to the total process performance of NBE project applications long before they arrive on-site for field start-up.
Customer-side Design Direction: From Senior Management to Operator Insights
Every field start-up, every training session, is an extremely valuable opportunity for our techs to work directly with the machine operators, production supervisors, and, often, the management, at our customers' processing facilities, to gather specific feedback. This feedback, of course, gets documented and is analyzed for continuous improvement purposes. But, it's also likely the feedback is immediately turned into action by the NBE ME group in order to improve the customer's start-up time. Maybe it's a newly designed and fabricated sub-assembly, or an improved materials-of-construction spec. In every case, the customer service and QA team is working with the NBE ME group to ensure the project is delivering optimal process performance for the customer.
Automation Performance Improvements Begin with an Improved Operator Experience
It's the field-level insight of the NBE quality assurance group, and the strength of the NBE controls and automation group, that, together, improve the performance and the operator experience of an NBE project. For example, based on actual operator input, the on-site NBE start-up tech may work with the controls and automation group to make the HMI screen layouts even more accessible and more intuitive for the operators. The intuitive HMI design will simplify the operator interactions, and, in turn, increase input repeatability, and output accuracy. Ultimately, these improvements will lead to process material purchase efficiencies, reduced maintenance, and more accurate data reporting. NBE controls and automation effect virtually every function of an NBE processing project. And, clearly, so does the NBE customer service and quality assurance group.
Communicating Progress, Confirming Performance: Benefits of ETA Project Execution
NBE field start-up deployments are not a last-minute, post-FAT reaction. As a project moves through its design, engineering, and manufacturing stages, it's common that changes occur in the layout, the sequence of operation, the functional specs; and so on. For the benefit of the project, the NBE project management group centralizes, sequences, and monitors the scope, costs, timelines, and changes related to the project. The NBE PM team, and the customer, are always communicating and confirming project progress. At the time of project commissioning, the NBE processing project will be running at optimal uptime, at optimal rate, and with optimal output.
Field Data Guides Production and Performance Objectives Throughout Project Lifecycle
Fabrication and assembly is likely the practice area through which NBE customer service and quality assurance reach most broadly into an NBE project; even before a project leaves the plant. Throughout the manufacturing process, NBE fab and assembly, and CS&QA staff, review field data in order to bring production and performance improvements to the project. Improvements may include hygienic design specifications, higher-performance materials of construction, or engineering for improved maintenance access and changeover safety. But, the CS&QA influence continues through to the last moments before a project departs from the NBE plant. Our testing protocol, and the separate final inspection protocol, complete the fabrication and assembly process. These are proactive steps; we are confirming the customer-verified project is ready for delivery to our field start-up crew at the customer location.