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Kardex Portal: Secure and efficient service solution

In today's industry 4.0 age, optimized utilization of warehouse systems requires reliable networking of machine production and manufacturing processes. The Kardex Group has recognized this trend towards progressive digitalization and since 2018 has been offering its customers the "Kardex Portal" supported by symmedia SP/1 software, which ensures the permanent availability of intralogistics processes.

The Kardex Group is divided into two divisions: Kardex Remstar and Kardex Mlog. The Kardex Group is headquartered in Zurich (Switzerland). In 2017, the company employed around 1,650 people and generated annual revenues of EUR 376.1 million. Kardex Remstar is a leading manufacturer of automated storage and retrieval systems. They operate in a heterogeneous industry environment and serve customers from a wide variety of industries. Kardex Mlog is a leading supplier in its field of integrated material flow systems and high-bay warehouses.

Despite the heterogeneous industry environment, the Kardex Group has a uniform goal: to increase productivity through increased efficiency in work processes. In order to achieve this goal, Kardex Remstar first introduced the "Kardex Portal" in 2018, which is supported by symmedia SP/1 software.

After an initial pilot phase with another industry 4.0 solution provider, Kardex switched to symmedia at the beginning of 2018. After only six months, Kardex can now offer its customers the Kardex portal worldwide. "Only symmedia offers the full range of remote access for service, monitoring and data analysis, both for new and old warehouse systems. That's why we chose symmedia," says Pascal Waldvogel, Digital Transformation Manager at Kardex Remstar.

The Kardex portal focuses on two areas: "Remote Assistance" and "Remote Analytics".

Remote Assistance

The portal enables monitoring of Kardex storage systems worldwide and predictive maintenance. If service is required, the operator can request technical assistance from Kardex either directly at the system or via an app. If the Kardex technician wishes to connect to a storage system, this can only be done with this invitation from the operator and only if the operator, service manager or logistics manager once again confirms access. Kardex technicians can now instruct people at the facility remotely on site and carry out remote diagnostics or maintenance.

Thanks to an automatic monitoring function, Kardex Service can also be notified directly and proactively of any problems with warehouse systems. This ensures fast response times and high equipment availability.

Remote Analytics

The Kardex Portal App provides customers with all device data on status and performance at any time and from any location. For this purpose, the system data is retrieved in the field at periodic intervals, processed and forwarded to the app. The system status messages can be set individually for each customer as required. With the extensive analysis options, service calls, plant utilization and the cycles run can be clearly visualized. Early fault detection and greater planning reliability thus mean optimized utilization of Kardex systems.

The Project

At the beginning of the project, the requirement was clear: as many machines as possible should be networked and connected to the Internet in order to design smart service processes through digitization. This requirement was met by symmedia. symmedia was very flexible right from the start and supported the project very intensively and in every respect: from the concept, through a test phase, to the roll-out.

The product launch of the service solution was at LogiMAT 2019 in Stuttgart in February and was very well received by the visitors.

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