Hexagon Brings Product-as-a-Service Model to Metrology
New offering delivers access to metrology equipment, maintenance, and certifications, eliminating the need for huge capital investments.
November 23, 2020
As consumers, we can buy razors, toothbrushes, and exercise equipment as a subscription service. The model is also taking off in the industrial space as companies like Rolls-Royce have transformed the way companies procure and maintain aircraft engines with power-by-the-hour service agreements.
Now Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division is getting into the act, bringing its version of a product-as-a-service business model to high-end metrology equipment. Called The Works, the two-pronged program helps companies of all sizes gain immediate access to CMM technologies without significant financial investment or risk while also offering an subscription program that covers annual certifications, preventative maintenance, software updates, and unlimited technical support. The latter is aimed at reducing downtime and allowing manufacturers to spend more time on process improvement.
Traditionally, the biggest hurdles for manufacturers looking to invest in metrology equipment are cost as well as the potential for disruption as the new equipment is installed and implemented. Introducing a new system requires investment in training and the onboarding of staff, which takes time away from core design and production responsibilities. It also requires careful planning for how the equipment will be used over the next decade.
The manufacturing industry tends to lag other industries in terms of adopting the latest consumer trends, however, the as-a-service model is gaining traction as people get more accustomed to it in their personal lives and because of the changes brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. “The pandemic has increased the willingness of manufacturers to adopt practices that were once considered to be at least somewhat taboo, such as using equipment that isn’t owned outright,” notes Milan Kocic, director of business development, support services for Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division in North America. “Businesses that can’t make capital investments are now much more open to the convenience and cost effectiveness of subscription equipment and services that can quickly make them more efficient and better able to remain competitive in an uncertain economic climate.”
With The Works program, smaller firms can gain access the latest technology without having to outlay hundreds of thousands of dollars on a system, Kocic says. With larger companies, a subscription service enables them to turn fleets of CMM systems into a controlled cost rather than having to make significant capital outlays each year, resulting in a simpler way to manage financials.
The Works is a five-year program that lets manufacturers use their choice of the latest Hexagon metrology equipment, which they either own at the end of the term or trade in for different CMM technology. All equipment and related services are included in the subscription, and the offering helps manufacturers manage costs while keeping certifications and maintenance up to date. MyCare, included with The Works, is also available as a separate service for companies that outright purchase Hexagon metrology equipment. It delivers equipment, system certification, software maintenance, and basic annual equipment maintenance services while also providing access to a rewards program offering discounts on key services. All CMMs offered in the program include the PULSE monitoring system, which uses a network of sensors to record potential crashes, temperature varations, and other parameters, in addition to integration with the SFx Asset Management software, to make it easier to analyze equipment utilization and maintenance planning.
The initiatives, and in particular, the MyCare maintenance service option, will serve as models for future Hexagon programs aimed at providing a more proactive experience for customers, Kocic says. Traditionally when a CMM breaks, the manufacturer has to wait days for a service visit, which creates downtime that significantly impacts productivity. “MyCare changes all of that because we reach out to the customer to communicate service reminders, schedule and provide fast and reliable maintenance, and make using and maintaining CMM systems as easy as possible,” he explains. “The last thing on a customer’s list of things to worry about is calling to schedule annual services so taking that off their list can save a lot of valuable time.”
For a look at how Hexagon’s Compass CMM technology enables faster inspections without loss of accuracy, check out this video.