FIOT – A Digital Transformation Strategy

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Digital Transformation
of the Manufacturing Plant

How to turn your production plant's data into information that will help you make prompt decisions? This is what digital transformation is all about. At FOXON, we call it the FIOT.

A Decision That Every Production Plant Must Make

FIOT projects aim to launch a plant's digital transformation. This is a step-by-step process that involves:

  • Analysing the company's problems, needs and wishes
  • Collecting data from production systems
  • Creating one place to go to for a single version of the truth
  • Integrating data from various IT/OT systems
  • Storing data in a database
  • Visualising data for the needs of different departments from across the company
  • Reporting data with an all-in-one reporting tool

FIOT = Factory Internet of Things

The FIOT represents the ecosystem of a digitally transformed factory, as developed by the company FOXON.

Such comprehensive factory digitalisation benefits maintenance, production, quality, energy and the entire management. Condition monitoring (CM) enables the plant to monitor trends in the development of the quantities measured and identify imminent machine faults before they can impact on a machine's operation. Long-term automated OEE monitoring helps make production processes more effective and efficient. Systematic energy consumption monitoring allows the factory to optimise consumption and reduce the carbon footprint.

Putting all of this data together and understanding it in context enables staff to obtain a full picture of what is happening in the plant.

We invite you to draw inspiration from projects implemented by FOXON.

The Key to a Successful Digital Transformation

1. Collect data from machines and standardise it

Start from the bottom. A production line's control systems contain plenty of useful data. All you need to do is access it. You can then gain information about your production (e.g. OEE, cycle time, downtime and quality) as well as technological data (e.g. temperatures, pressure, energy consumption, vibrations and flow rates).

In addition, all of this data needs to be standardised, which means converted into the universal OPC/MQTT communication protocol, stored in one database and sorted in such a way that it can be used in higher-level systems.

In the FIOT, we collect data from many different shop-floor-level systems, for instance PLCs, CNCs, IoT sensors and robots from various manufacturers. We can also monitor the quality of PROFIBUS and PROFINET networks.

The FIOT is not a software application but know-how as to how to choose applications from the technologies available that will be the best for you.

2. What to do with the data next? Integrate it with other OT and IT systems

The data, prepared as described above, can then be provided for many employees and systems from across the plant. It is stored in one central datahub, the UNS, which makes this data available for other systems.

The data can be useful for:

  • Maintenance staff in the area of condition monitoring
  • Production and quality in the area of OEE monitoring
  • Facility managers in the area of facility monitoring
  • Every user of ERP, MES, SCADA and SAP systems

The FIOT ensures that users rely on the same data source. A big advantage is that all data is provided online and real-time, so you do not have to wait for days or weeks for data to be analysed, as before.

3. Turn the data into valuable information. For everyone

Collecting data is not enough. You have to see it. Not only at the level of the management but also across the enterprise.

And, if you want to be able to make sense of the data fast, you need to look at it using handy reporting tools, for example the Power BI.

These tools feature user-friendly graphs and visualisations. You can see historical as well as nearly real-time, online data, so generating reports is no longer a matter of hours or days.

The idea behind FIOT projects is to put production and technological data together so that you can obtain the full picture, enabling you to make decisions faster and more effectively, whether you are a manager or a maintenance engineer.

Before you get started with digitalisation

Write down
your problems

Talk to your colleagues about what problems they have, what prevents them from doing their jobs and what needs to be improved.

Are you short of accurate production data? Do you need to reduce downtime and energy consumption? Does turning production data into reports for your meetings take too long?

what your future
should look like

What should your ideal working day look like? How is it different from the current situation?

Solving the most pressing problem is not enough because another one is going to emerge. Data acquisition and digitalisation are long-term tasks. In the future, you will definitely have to include additional machines, IT systems and people in your data collection.

Find a partner
that will help you
create your
project's architecture

Only when you know what you need can you look for a way to achieve it. The right systems integrator will help you create your project's architecture in such a way that it will address your problems.

Such a partner will know how to prepare a long-term strategy for you and how to choose technologies that will fit your purpose.


  • We have experience. As a systems integrator, we have years of experience with analysis, solution design, delivering data collection / processing / integration systems, and data storage, visualisation and reporting.
  • We are innovative. We provide manufacturing companies with modern industrial digital solutions and products that enable them to interconnect, digitalise and optimise their production processes.
  • We are not a distributor but an integrator. We do not only sell technologies but offer technical expertise and real customisable, scalable solutions that work.
  • We solve your problems. Our goal is to understand your problems, possibilities and potential. Only then can we take your needs into consideration and turn them into the right solution for you.

Where has the FIOT been implemented?

loga reference fiot new

Start Small, 
Think Big

The first step is an introductory meeting in which you will tell us how and why you would like to collect data and how you think about your digital transformation.

We will advise you on to how to get started, what your strategy should look like so that it is a success, and what we can help you with.

If we meet and discuss the above, we can then plan further steps.


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    OTHER ARTICLES - 09/06/2023

    Listen to an interview with Jaromír Peterka about how to take digital transformation in a manufacturing plant to the good end and how to get the right people involved from the start. You can also read the interview here. The questions were asked by Ondřej Musil.

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