Zorya-Mashproekt (Gas turbine research & production complex, State Enterprise) is part of the Ukrainian Defense Industries (Ukroboronprom) state corporation and one of the largest manufacturing enterprises in Ukraine. Its core activity is production of gas turbine engines, geared transmission mechanisms, as well as marine and industrial facilities for the energy and gas industry.
The company’s products are used on anti-submarine vessels and dynamically-supported craft (high-speed missile boats and hovercraft). Its output volume more than doubled in physical terms between 2009 and 2012. Nevertheless, the enterprise is seeking geographic expansion for its business in order to explore new markets.
Large international projects and modern customers typically require:
- Preparing technical documentation in English;
- Submitting the documentation and its further maintenance (including change management) in electronic form.
In addition, the enterprise needed to reduce product development time in order to achieve desired goals.
The digital transformation of Zorya-Mashproekt Design Division has covered almost all key business processes. In particular, it is critical to manage product development processes to ensure the introduction of new products.
The most important step taken by the management was a full transition to electronic documentation management including product design, its development and delivery to the customer. This approach now ensures real-time management of a large machine-building enterprise.
Since the company’s goal was to land new large contracts for the production of gas turbine plants, it faced the need to solve a number of technological issues. It was necessary to organize quick transition from paper drawings in Russian to multilingual technical e-documentation for the Design Division of the enterprise employing about 600 design engineers and 150 process engineers. It was essential to set up an electronic document repository, electronic document management, solve IT security issues, and ensure that technical documentation is prepared and published in English.
This project became part of a more global digital transformation initiative of the enterprise management, which concerned more than just the Design Division of the plant.
Electronic document management
The Design Division of the enterprise is one of the largest ones in the company, producing an average of 8,000-10,000 drawings (A4 sheets) per month.
Before launching the project, the Design Division needed an organized workflow. In fact, even the creator of a document was not always aware of which version of the file corresponded to the paper original. Due to the different drawings styles, the general assembly shop had difficulty with them. Despite the electronic engineering process, product specifications had to be uploaded into the ERP system manually. Significant time losses were caused by rebuilding 3D models for the main production instrumentation.
The enterprise created an electronic archive to transition to the electronic technical documentation development, which became the basis for the engineering e-documents management system (EDMS). After piloting a number of specialized solutions, the management decided to implement EDMS into the IT-Enterprise ERP system, which by that time had already been adopted and partially covered some automation tasks. The enterprise standard establishes the status of an electronic original, the procedure for its release, approval, storage and modification.
Preparing documentation in English
Engineering drawings in English can be obtained by designing the product in Russian and translating the final document into English. The enterprise has chosen a solution that saves engineers a lot of time: the IT-Enterprise ERP system has implemented a module for automatic translation of specifications and data. The company has adopted bilingual templates for paperwork using this feature. The end-to-end 3D design has significantly reduced the time required to complete work.
As a result, product development has been accelerated by 30–40%.
Key project factors
Having an integrated ERP system from IT-Enterprise, Zorya-Mashproekt has successfully implemented a large-scale digital transformation project, switched to electronic document management and become more globally competitive.
All product development now takes place in electronic form. The IT-Enterprise system is widely used by design and process engineers for almost all documentation preparation and publishing, along with all archive-related operations. Currently, the client has an established process for managing engineering e-documentation in English. IT-Enterprise has about 10 archives for various purposes, 3 of which are approved documents archives. Once the engineer uploads technical requirements into the system, bilingual specifications and drawings are automatically generated. Therefore, any engineer can easily produce bilingual drawings regardless of their knowledge of English.
Access to electronic documents stored in archives has greatly facilitated the development of new technological processes and instrumentation. This allows switching to paperless technologies with the exception of final assembly operations when the drawings are needed directly on the shop floor.
The electronic archive by IT-Enterprise is the basis for the enterprise’s engineering document management. The system implements reliable storage of e-document versions at all stages and in various statuses (drafts, working and archived documents). Paper files are no longer needed, while TIFF/PDF copies can fully replace tracing paper. Great attention is paid to maintaining a high level of security. Flexible differentiation of documents access rights and processing statistics ensure a proper level of data protection.