Spacecubed member Project 412 is a startup that believes in automating the right things, for the right price, that deliver the right outcomes.
Their initial concept was developed after speaking with several businesses through the CORE Innovation Hub, highlighting a need to provide autonomous light vehicles to the mining industry. Although there was enthusiasm for autonomous technology, they identified that there was some initial work that companies needed to do to understand if they were ready for automation.
“We discovered that small and medium enterprises needed a simple way to assess their business. Through this customer development process, we created Kaiketsu,” said Project 412 Projects and Concepts Lead Hilary Goh.
“Compared to the traditional method of consultants studying and observing members of an organisation over several days and weeks, Kaiketsu allows for self-assessment, business case generation and an automation roadmap within a day.”
Kaiketsu (Japanese for “solve” or “solution”) is a SAAS web-based tool that is designed to be part of an iterative change management system and can be applied to any industry where automation is desired.
The software redefines assets in terms of how they improve the productivity of the workforce, giving a competitive advantage over approaches that simply try to sweat assets, while ignoring the human interactions that fundamentally make them valuable.
A key step of the Kaiketsu process is a site wide activity assessment that maps employee’s roles to the largest database of occupational data in the world (O*NET) and allows management to target roles where the highest opportunity for automation exists.
From there, Kaiketsu builds a relationship map of each task, its effectiveness and frequency to build a cost/complexity matrix. This ensures any automation solution is most encompassing, effective and provides the best return on investment.
“For example, a large portion of a mine surveying task might be classed as ‘Information Gathering’, so drone technology may be considered to decrease the time and cost of gathering data,” said Hilary.
In summary, using Kaiketsu software will help identify how much of a task is automatable, which should the business focus on first, and how much of a task is automatable with current off the shelf solutions. The cost allocation components then allow a business to understand the value of automating that component on an equivalent cost basis minus productivity.
The end result will include an overview of the impact of partial or complete automation, equivalent human cost impact of automation, task evaluation of task effectiveness, highlight areas of automation focus and create a technology roadmap as well as interrelationship mapping of each task.
For project owners automating repeatable tasks, Kaiketsu allows mine site workers more time to focus on synthesising data and finding improvements, which adds value to a business. For businesses providing autonomous technology, Kaiketsu is a way to describe how their products can benefit miners.
“Kaiketsu can also identify tasks or components of a task that should not be automated, as doing so would have a negative impact on the business,” said Hilary.