AML Oceanographic continually engineers and develops new prototypes for their customers. In 1995, they pioneered time-of-flight sound velocity technology. And in 2008 they launched the market’s first and only field swappable sound velocity sensor.
On top of their innovative strides, AML regularly creates custom builds and modifications to their product line. If a client has a specific requirement for sensing equipment, it’s the responsibility of AML to tailor products to meet these unique demands. Director of Strategic Development, Dustin Olender, was tasked with implementing the right software to fit the bill.
Established in 1974, AML Oceanographic designs and manufactures instrumentation and deployment systems for hydrographic surveying, environmental monitoring, and other subsea applications. With customers in over 100 countries and across dozens of industries, their custom engineering and deployment support continues to set them apart from the competition. AML Oceanographic is headquartered in British Columbia, Canada.
Previously, AML was using a Jive wiki-based file system to share and discuss process documentation.
With increasing customizations and communication channels, simply transferring their documents to a digital platform wasn’t enough. Creating and controlling assembly procedures in Jive remained a time consuming process. With a wide variety of evolving assemblies, drafting new procedures is a daily task that requires significant resources and planning.
Adding and formatting photos within Jive proved to be a burden. Because Jive does not have a built-in image editor, authors were required to use third party software tools to add arrows and other markups to a photo before importing into Jive. Based on internal timing studies, editing a step in Jive took 3.5 times as long as making the same edit in Dozuki.
The engineers and technical writers at AML Oceanographic were spending valuable time tampering with formatting options, getting their images or diagram to upload correctly, or editing a procedure. As a company that is constantly writing new SOPs for custom products, an inefficient authoring process results in hundreds of hours of wasted time.
Independent assessments concluded that the average authoring time was 2.3 times faster with Dozuki, reducing authoring time by 56.5%.
Director of Strategic Development, AML Oceanographic
Reducing process waste is a constant focus for the teams at AML. Distributing hundreds of unique and rapidly evolving, custom processes to production floor employees presented a major standardization challenge. “We are always thinking about motion waste,” Olender says, “The predominant checklist section in Dozuki makes it easy to make sure the proper tools and parts are in place before processes are started. This helps eliminate motion waste and speeds up our production.”
Most importantly, AML recognized that the real value of Dozuki goes beyond waste reduction. At AML, SOPs are typically drafted by engineers, and the production team is responsible for revisions and finalizing the documents. With so many people involved in the authoring process, transparency is crucial.
When editing a document in Dozuki, changes are recorded and automatically sent to designated approval team(s). “Before, revisions were undocumented and implemented without much dissemination,” says Olender, “Now updated SOPs are properly broadcasted so everyone is in the know.” Communication and standardization at AML has been helped thanks to user groups in Dozuki, giving specific user types the appropriate level of access to SOPs. Employees on the production floor can make comments or suggestions within each step, recording valuable feedback and notifying the proper personnel, streamlining the entire process.