P&G selects Microsoft Cloud to support digital manufacturing

Procter & Gamble Company (P&G) has selected Microsoft Cloud to support digital manufacturing at P&G.
P&G digital transformation
The two companies will co-innovate to accelerate and expand P&G’s digital manufacturing platform and leverage the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) to bring products to consumers faster, increase customer satisfaction and improve productivity to reduce costs, Microsoft said in a news statement.

P&G CIO Vittorio Cretella said: “At P&G, data and technology are at the heart of our business strategy and are helping create superior consumer experiences. This co-innovation agreement will digitize and integrate data to increase quality, efficiency and sustainable use of resources to deliver those superior experiences.”

P&G will use Microsoft Azure Cloud platform to digitize and integrate data from more than 100 manufacturing sites around the world and enhance its AI, machine learning and edge computing services for real-time visibility. This will enable P&G employees to analyze production data and leverage artificial intelligence to make decisions.

P&G selected Microsoft, the second largest Cloud service provider in the world, as its preferred cloud provider to build the future of digital manufacturing based on a four-year history of successfully working together on data and AI.

Judson Althoff, Microsoft’s chief commercial officer, said: “Our partnership will further P&G’s growth and business transformation through digital technology that connects people, assets, workflow and business processes that promote resiliency.”

P&G is already innovating and using Azure IoT Hub and IoT Edge to help manufacturing technicians analyze insights with speed and efficiency, creating improvements in the production of its baby care and paper products with pilot projects happening in Egypt, India, Japan and the United States.

P&G is making advancements in its diaper manufacturing process to reduce manufacturing downtime, minimize scrap and lower maintenance expenses by automatically detecting and resolving the largest causes of line stops and rework using machine learning.

The new IIoT platform uses machine telemetry and high-speed analytics to continuously monitor production lines to provide early detection and prevention of potential issues in the material flow. This improves cycle time, reduces rework losses and ensures quality, while simultaneously improving operator productivity.

In a pilot with Microsoft, P&G can better predict finished paper towel sheet lengths, improving the ability to deliver the right amount of product to the consumer. With the new IIoT platform, P&G can collect data from sensors on the manufacturing line and use technologies like advanced algorithms, machine learning and predictive analytics so it can improve manufacturing efficiencies.

P&G will use Microsoft’s machine learning and data storage platforms to improve energy utilization across its paper machines in Family Care.

P&G teams can analyze large volumes of holistic data sets and pinpoint energy efficiency and machine maintenance opportunities across the manufacturing process. The Azure platform will allow P&G to easily integrate event summary data — such as production runs, downtime, changeovers and more — along with historical data.

Microsoft and P&G have co-created a Digital Enablement Office (DEO) staffed by experts from both organizations. They will deploy the Azure platform, and the DEO also intends to serve as an incubator to create high-priority business scenarios in the areas of product manufacturing and packaging processes that can be implemented across P&G.