Interview with Dr. Johannes Eickmanns, Bayer Material Science AG / Germany
Bayer Material Science AG
Dr. Johannes Eickmanns
Department Head Change Management Production and
Prior to the Global ManuChem Strategies 2014, we spoke to Dr. Johannes Eickmans, Department
Head Change Management Production and Technology, Bayer Material Science AG / Germany
In your opinion: What are the main
optimization of chemical production
and what are the specific challenges
related to your company?
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: There are no
new challenges in general, apart from
one exception: the stronger focus on
challenges are the cost of raw materials,
the European legislation and the public
perception of the risk and benefits of
chemical production. At BMS we have
challenges in optimizing our turnaround
management: We are extending the
cycle to 4 - 5 years (2% turnaround
losses p.a.). And of course we have to
make sure that the plant runs reliably in
Looking to volatility in commodity
markets, which role plays operations
management, specifically S&OP and
plant capacity management?
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: For a specific
planning it is important that the plants are
available when they are scheduled to
important. Another fact is that a worldwide class unit with only one line cannot
adapt to changing demand as easily as
unit with multiple lines, where single lines
can be shut off. In general, new
investments in capacity expansions have
to be based on good market forecasts
and they are long-term decisions.
Normally it takes time for the market to
absorb the new capacity.
Do you use and / or plan to implement
new technologies like MES, Big Data
& Cloud Technologies?
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: BMS has
implemented MES in most of its units
and we are continuously updating the
systems. We operate in commercial
systems and in addition have systems
build by our technology provider Bayer
Technology Services. Currently we don’t
use “Big Data & Cloud technologies” on
a large scale. One Big Data aspect is the
analysis of production data history with
neuronal networks to detect hidden
causes for improvement.
Cloud technology is a dazzling term and
we would have to better define it. Of
course we have a globally connected IT
infrastructure which we may call “private
Do you use mobile technologies to
optimize operator management and
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: No. In most
cases we do not have a WLAN in our
units and mobile equipment which is
explosion-poof is either too expensive or
not available. An additional requirement
is the connectivity of the mobile devices
with Meridium or SAP.
Which role plays the topic critical
infrastructures in relation to cyber
security in your plant?
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: For years this
is an important topic and we have
measures in place to protect our
productions systems, for example
multistage firewalls to separate the
internet from office PCs, a firewall
between SAP or PI an the DCS systems.
USB ports are blocked and a strict
access right management. We operate in
emergency power systems. Another
important topic is that all people in the
unit are aware of the importance of cyber
security. Therefore special online
awareness trainings are conducted.
According to your presentation
“Implementation of a Global System
for Production Loss Accounting”,
could you briefly introduce us to the
project and what is important about
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: It is important
to have an accurate production loss
accounting system. This is essential for 5
reasons: 1. to know where the big losses
occur, 2. to know the root course of the
improvement measures and experience
exchange, 4. to set realistic improvement
targets and 5. to control the progress.
This means in summary to increase the
OEE. Easy visual and analytic access to
the data is important for a living system.
How different will the Chemical
Operations/Manufacturing of the year
2020 be from today’s ones?
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: In the
chemical industry the conti production is
higly-automated. Today’s Operations is
basically performed from a central
control room using advanced process
Which question would you like to ask
ManuCHEM Strategies 2014?
Dr. Johannes Eickmans: I would be
interested in how production loss is
counted in other companies. Which
software are they using and which KPIs
do they define?
Thanks a lot for this interview!
Interview Partner: Peter Haack and Dr.
After studying physics Dr. J. Eickmans worked
as a post-doc for 2 years at Yale University,
USA before joining the Central Research
Department at Bayer in 1987. From 1994 –
1997 he worked in product development at
AGFA-GEVAERT, Belgium. From 2001 to
2010 Dr. Eickmans held a Principal position at
Bayer Business Consulting. His main areas of
consulting have been projects in production, e.
g. maintenance strategy, continuous process
improvement, cost cutting, personnel efficiency
and benchmarking studies. Since 2010 he was
responsible at Bayer MaterialScience as Head
of Global Operational Excellence. Now he is
Head of Change Management for Industrial
Global ManuChem Strategies brings together
industry leaders to discuss the current state of
the industry, the impact of new regulations and
the challenge to increase efficiency in chemical
operations and technical assets.
Information about the event and
we.CONECT can be found at:
Managing Director / Product Management &
Phone: +49 (0)30 52 10 70 3 – 44
Fax: +49 (0)30 52 10 70 3 – 30
we.CONECT Global Leaders GmbH
10178 Berlin, Germany