By Julia Ponzini, SAP Customer Marketing

Technology is a driving force in today’s business market. With the lines between business and technology already blurred, organizations need to reinvent traditional organizational structures and management operations.

With its roots in the mining of underground resources, one company, Japan-based Mitsui Kinzoku (Mitsui Mining & Smelting), understands the importance of innovative technology to respond to changes in its external environment.

Preserving the Natural Environment

For about 150 years, Mitsui Mining & Smelting has fostered the earth’s natural resources. Through the mining and smelting of nonferrous metals, Mitsui has continued to provide materials and products essential to many industries by giving added value to these materials through processing and assembly.

The preservation of the natural environment is a top priority for Mitsui. Working in line with this policy, the company initiated various initiatives to preserve the environment, conserve energy, and reduce CO2 emissions in all aspects of its business. With the goal of passing on this sustainable society to the next generation, Mitsui was looking to make continued contributions by further developing its manufacturing processes.

Paving the Way for Future Generations

Looking to the future, Mitsui Mining & Smelting understood its conventional system could not keep up with rapidly evolving external environments. The company needed to digitize its production process and recognize, share, develop, and utilize the knowledge and skills of its employees regarding operations and processes in order to thrive for another 150 years.

Mitsui Mining & Smelting was looking for a reliable technology to solve these problems. Selected for just this requirement and for understanding the most advanced SAP solutions, Mitsui partnered with QUNIE, a consulting firm and member of NTT DATA, a trusted global innovator of IT and business services headquartered in Tokyo.

QUNIE took on the responsibility of understanding current business conditions and defining business requirements. QUNIE has identified the quality control items needed to determine shipping schedules and the manufacturing processes needed to meet customer requirements.

With the help of QUNIE and SAP technology, Mitsui Mining & Smelting reinvented its existing process – typically performed by skilled workers – now an automated system for manufacturing using SAP Leonardo technology.

Years of Learning in Just a Few Days

This digital transformation has accelerated skill acquisition. It had taken years of experience, and now it’s down to just a few days or a few weeks. Not only did this new automated system improve production efficiency, it produced the following benefits:

  • Achieved quick traceability possible by changing from paper base to database
  • Fostered accurate and fast communication between production managers and process operators
  • Allowed anyone to acquire the abilities of skilled workers

The net of it all is that this next-generation digital platform sees better management of people and processes and is expected to be implemented at overseas plants as well.

To learn more about Mitsui Mining & Smelting solution, check out their SAP Innovation Awards 2020 Pitch Deck.