How IT professionals at thyssenkrupp are driving its customers forward
thyssenkrupp has successfully set a course for the future by systematically digitalizing all areas of its business and focusing its efforts on the green transformation. The group of companies is driving its customers forward when it comes to digitalization by harnessing the broad tech expertise of its own IT experts.
Digitizing and connecting production systems
Customer requirements are becoming increasingly demanding as a result of global competition. Regardless of whether we’re talking about the steel industry, the automotive sector, logistics or plant engineering. Digitized production and processes have become indispensable for thyssenkrupp. “Without digitized production systems, automatic data collection or the analysis of data in the cloud, we would be unable to meet our customers' growing demands,” explains Roland Kerbleder. As Head of Operations, he has been responsible for overseeing the advancement of digitalization in production at thyssenkrupp Presta, the technology leader in steering technology, since 2013.
The steering specialists use a powerful “Manufacturing Execution System” (MES) to collect information on a continuous basis. The system controls and monitors the production processes in real time. All the data that is collected is sent to a cloud and stored there. This means it can be accessed at any time - from anywhere in the world regardless of the plant you work at. And this allows thyssenkrupp Presta to meet its customers’ high quality and speed requirements at all times.
Big Data and fully networked value chains
thyssenkrupp Steel Europe AG also relies on fully networked production and Big Data. Over 500,000 sensors monitor each step of steel production and store huge volumes of data in the central cloud platform “TERA”. This way customers can track each production step and their deliveries in real time. They can even make adjustments: The customer can adjust material properties or specify when their steel will be rolled just hours before work is due to commence. By digitizing the process, the IT professionals from thyssenkrupp are giving its customers the power process and use steel in ever more efficient ways.
IT as a business enabler
IT infrastructure is a fundamental part of digital production. The same can be said for thyssenkrupp Bilstein. “If the network crashes, networked production will come to a halt” explains Dr. Peter Fischer, Head of Infrastructure, Security & Digitalization at the shock absorber specialist. One of the greatest challenges for Peter and his team involves ensuring that systems are working stably so that safe production can be guaranteed. The other great challenge involves further developing IT infrastructure and production using modern technologies such as cloud computing, PaaS (Platform as a service), and SaaS (Software as a service).
After all, functioning IT is no longer just a necessary standard on the international stage. It is becoming a gamechanger. Dr. Peter Fischer also shares this view: “We are developing our IT away from the classic (internal) service provider towards a business enabler that generates real value for our specialist departments” – and for customers directly.
Protecting networked systems with powerful cybersecurity
Increasing requirements have a real impact on what happens from day to day in cybersecurity, too: The number of cyberattacks worldwide continues to rise. In Germany alone, cybercrime costs companies billions in damages each year. Hackers target networked production systems as well as the entire IT infrastructure of industrial companies.
It is cyber professionals like Daniel Sauder whose job it is to prevent hackers from succeeding. The cyber professional has been responsible for “Offensive Security and Security Enablement” at Solution Centre for Cyber Security at thyssenkrupp since 2021. Two disciplines fall into Daniel’s remit: penetration testing and vulnerability management. When it comes to penetration testing, or “pen testing” for short, cyber professionals manually test their own systems for security vulnerabilities. Vulnerability management, on the other hand, is concerned with identifying and remedying vulnerabilities that have been identified in cyber infrastructure. And Daniel can rely on his excellently trained, top-motivated team for this.
Modern software for intelligent chassis systems
Cibi Kaliamoorthy can also rely on her team. As Head of System Integration at thyssenkrupp Bilstein, she uses modern software to make intelligent chassis systems a reality. At a time when chassis are getting smarter and more powerful, the role that software developers like Cibi play is becoming enormously important. After all, software, electronics, and algorithms have long been seen as being just as important as mechanical chassis components. The software developer and her team develop bespoke software solutions for several well-known companies in the automotive world: “All our projects are very future-oriented, modern, extremely diverse, and each has its own specific requirements. We work closely with our clients to find creative and fitting solutions for their requirements.”
Reducing CO2 emissions using digital supply chains
The same goes for thyssenkrupp Material Services, one of the world’s largest independent material traders, which works closely with its customers as it transitions more and more from a pure materials seller to a service provider and supply chain manager. As it undergoes this transition, thyssenkrupp Materials Services is focusing its efforts on automation, digitalization and artificial intelligence in particular. Their goal is to operate climate neutrally as early as 2030. In addition to this ambition, the materials experts also want to help their customers to be greener – using modern and digitized supply chain management. After all, we will only be able to reduce CO2 emissions in a drastic and sustainable way by working together.
The thyssenkrupp Materials Services team must act with foresight to create an efficient and flexible supply chain. Digitalization and transparent data handling make this possible. They monitor and analyse a variety of factors such as freight capacities, their utilisation, and costs continuously and in real time. They even look at severe weather, traffic jams or changes in demand as part of this continuous monitoring. These factors play a decisive role when determining whether improvements can be made to transport routes or the length of time spent in warehouses.
Are you interested in shaping the future of digitalization at thyssenkrupp? Then don’t pass up on this opportunity to level up on your own career and find the right IT job for you!