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Breakout session 1: Process Automation / Factory Automation

10 Jun 2019
Donegal Digital and DEVISE European project organise a workshop in Letterkenny to sketch out a Process Automation pilot.
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22 (1).jpg
On the 28th of May Donegal Digital partnership, in cooperation with DEVISE project (funded by Interreg Europe programme), organised a workshop in CoLab (LYIT, Letterkenny), to identify concrete opportunities that can be implemented by companies based in the county.

They organise four breakout sessions to discuss different topics: Process Automation / Factory Automation, Digital marketing, Digital training in small businesses and Test new technologies. 

About Process Automation / Factory Automation
This group, including local SMEs and representatives from Enterprise Ireland development agency discussed about sketching out a Process Automation pilot because the results of the previously circulated surveys by DEVISE project indicated high demand for process automation solutions among Donegal companies. The SMEs participating in that group identified the following aspects: 

Needs
  • an online inventory control system 
  • Digital Niche marketing
  • basic consultancy
  • research & development on producing product with different materials, sizes and using different technologies
  • innovation in the process cycle
  • 3D models / print of prototypes or 3D construction-based modelling
  • CNC cutting tools
  • developing sensors
  • VR & AR 

Constraints
: SMEs mentioned facts like:
  • "knowing there is a market for their product/service but not being able to reach that market, so doing things the old way"
  • "no automation of easy access to parts in workshop (have to move items to get at the engine part sought)"
  • "tried other big companies, but Brexit is an issue for them"
  • "lack of technical / digital experience and would need basic consultancy"
  • "unable to retain staff all year round"
  • "doing innovation processes manually"
  • "global market in place but want a footprint in the Irish market"
  • "not being able to stop a process to incorporate a new technology"
  • "lack of funding for demonstration/awareness days" 
  • "challenges of public procurement for SMEs". 

Pilot project/opportunities
:
  • mentoring
  • an online inventory control system
  • attend and display at Trade Shows
  • Online Trading Vouchers
  • companies could apply for agile funding from Enterprise Ireland 
  • using 3D modelling tools to build & animate a 3D model display online to maximise resources and savings
  • using AutoCAD industry standard
  • training on standard tools available / Avail of Skillsnet training opportunities (with 30% funding available)
  • demonstration days, e.g. Digital Catapult Centre in Belfast
  • meet ups 

Donegal County Council Enterprise Ireland IDA Ireland Letterkenny Institute of Technology Udaras Pramerica ERNACT Failte Ireland