Digital Plant Maturity Model

8 March 2024
Information Technology

The digital plant maturity model (DPMM) provides a high-level characterization of a digital plant. It takes readers through five maturity levels from a predominantly paper-based facility to a vision of the future, a fully automated, adaptive, collaborative, self-optimizing, and autonomous plant that is fully integrated into the end-to-end, internal and external value chain.

To utilize the model, BioPhorum also published A best practice guide to using the BioPhorum digital plant maturity model and assessment tool. With this tool, users can assess their facilities, understand where they are on the journey to digitization and understand what is required to become increasingly digitally mature. Use of this tool increases consistency between assessments and has enabled BioPhorum members to benchmark their facilities against each other.

We spoke to Jeanette Motzer, Senior Director, MES and Business Technologies at BioMarin, about using the DPMM when implementing a manufacturing execution system (MES).

How did you use the DPMM?

When we were developing the business case for implementing an MES, we used the DPMM to facilitate discussions on the overall benefits that the new system would bring to BioMarin. It helped to provide a high-level external viewpoint to support the development of the business case and ultimately gain sponsorship and support from leadership.

The DPMM was leveraged during the development of the business case, to provide solid external benchmarking and industry best practice and to show how the implementation of MES would fit into the holistic integration of our technology vision. We used the five DPMM maturity levels to show where BioMarin was at the time as well as the digital technology path we were recommending. This provided an additional level of confidence to leadership It gave leadership knowledge and confidence in our proposals.

Why did you want to implement an MES?

We wanted to transform our Manufacturing Operations, from manual operations and manual data sharing to a more automated model, supporting our manufacturing operations, ultimately facilitating provision of products for our patients. We have systems deployed across the manufacturing space: ERP, lab, equipment management, and automation systems, which all require data from Manufacturing, so the next logical step was the implementation of a manufacturing execution technology. Besides the manufacturing and quality benefits, an MES would allow data from manufacturing to become integrated with all the other functions that need it, such as ERP.

How helpful was the DPMM?

Using the DPMM gave BioMarin more confidence that the technology vision related to MES was supported by industry. In that sense, the DPMM helped facilitate the MES project approval that was ultimately granted, and we are now reaping the benefits of an implemented MES.

I think the DPMM could serve many needs because it’s understandable at a high level but contains more detailed information if you want to dive into it. I used it at a high level to show our leadership that the main path we’re going down made sense and that other companies were doing the same. You can also get more detailed information out of the DPMM, to support more specific needs on types of systems or areas of application. Overall, it reduces the work and research that individual companies might have to do, as the DPMM has been developed by a knowledgeable cross-functional group of people.

BioMarin will continue to advance its technologies. But, like many other organizations, we want to think holistically about where our systems are going, make sure they are fit-for-purpose, that they’re connected appropriately, have an integrated data model, etc. So, I see the DPMM being more useful to BioMarin as we continue this journey.

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