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The power of interactive data visualization

28. March 2022

Interactive data visualization can be described as an innovative playground where users can visualize data in a graphic or illustrative format. Visualized content is comprehended faster and easier than text and numbers. It simplifies the presentation of data, which makes it possible to understand and process information overload in one view. This article discusses how interactive data visualization can improve functions and procedures for industrial facilities.  

 

Improved collaboration and information sharing 

Silo-planning is a common scenario for industrial operations, which makes it challenging to secure information sharing throughout the organization. The different silos depend on each other, and it is therefore crucial that they have access to the same key information. On top of working in silos, and even remote, they may use various systems that do not talk to each other. This makes it close to impossible to secure information sharing across roles and disciplines. One silo may own a specific activity relying on several sub-activities that functions and resources in other silos are responsible for. These various tasks must often occur in a certain order. If one sub-activity can not happen as planned, it affects the entire chain of activities that different silos are responsible for. If a matter is reported in an independent system that is not linked to other operational planning systems it may cause various assumptions and serious misunderstandings. This is not something that happens now and then. For industrial operations, a plan is often outdated while it is being prepared due to unforeseen events such as rapid weather changes, missing personnel, delays, stops etc. Statistics from Visavi's solution show that there are dozens if not hundreds of changes in these assumptions - every day.  

So how to drag the information out of the silos and immediately share it with the entire organization without interfering with daily tasks? Using interactive visualization to gather data from every level in an organization encourages employees to share and collaborate, which makes both physical and digital meetings more efficient. If new information is visualized and available for everyone constantly, some meetings may not even be necessarily anymore. A shared live visualization where data from all systems used in the various silos are gathered secures shared situational awareness when it is used by the entire organization. This way everyone sees how various changes affect their work instantly. Interactive data visualization supports a human centric user-experience, which creates transparency, as it ensures everyone is aware of what’s going on; and it promotes collaboration, as it invites everyone to participate. 

Still_20220310_3Visavi promotes collaboration and secures efficient status and ad-hoc meetings. This visualization of live data ensures that everyone knows and understand what is going on at all times. 

 

Improved safety 

At industrial assets, certain jobs can often not be done at the same place at the same time due to safety risks. You may not want someone to do heavy lifting where an external contractor is doing other maintenance work at the same time. With constant pressure on securing efficient production, optimizing resource usage, and reaching the company’s HSSE goals, it is difficult to handle ad-hoc situations without knowing the consequences. When relying on plans in multiple systems, there is a high risk of area conflicts and dangerous situations, as the different plans are updated based on various information sources. Imagine being able to see, share and notify if there are safety risks involved in a plan before executing it. Imagine being able to react quickly without feeling anxious that some information has been overlooked, not communicated or understood correctly. This can easily be the reality if all the various plans are gathered and visualized in one interactive surface used by everyone.  

 

Improved decision-making processes  

Frequent change in plans requires efficient re-prioritization and re-scheduling – meaning regular assessments and decisions. With lots of data coming from different sources it is challenging to have complete control and be comfortable with all decisions. There is a high risk of overseeing important information that is critical to be aware of when scheduling and prioritizing maintenance work and operational activities. With the right technology, one can visualize all kinds of data including real-time data to create a complete overview of operations including all activities and actors.  Interactive data visualization allows us to see and play with lots of information in a user-friendly way. In other words, it enables everyone to see and interact with the big picture. This improves the decision-making speed, as decision-makers can immediately see how to prioritize to optimize resource usage safely. When all the needed information is gathered in one tool, interactive data visualization also promotes smarter decisions, as the user can easily view and test different scenarios. The final approver can then compare several proposals and comfortably decide how to proceed based on that. When the various scenarios or plans clearly illustrate how, where and when resources are being used, the decision maker have the power to secure optimized resource usage in a safe manner, meaning smarter decisions for the business, the people, and the globe. 

 

Still_20220310_8Visavi allows you to visualize different alternatives as scenarios and then proceed with the best plan based on resource-usage and safety matters. 

 

Simplifying everyone’s working day  

Visavi simplifies daily operations for everyone by gathering and visualizing all data from existing systems, as discussed above. The solution is sharing information in a human-centric way. According to customers, no class-room training is necessary in order to learn Visavi and no skills is required so it is safe to say that the solution fits all. If you miss a meeting, are working remote or travelling, you’ll still have 100% control over what is going on because all the information you need is visualized in the system - always updated and available for everyone everywhere.  

 

Want to see how it works for your company? Book a 15 minutes live demo with us here and we’ll show you how. 

 

Hilde Bull-Engelstad