A crucial part of a company’s value chain is its operations, which involve all processes related to production or the core of the company’s business activities. This phase highlights the manufacturing stage that typically relies heavily on operating systems to deliver output. The goal is to be able to produce as many units in the shortest time to attain customer satisfaction and increase financial returns.
To ensure efficient operations, companies must have assets and systems that are reliable and can perform their intended functions for a long time. Essentially, this is what a reliability engineer attempts to improve. By having an active role in operations, reliability engineers (REs) deal with increasing the reliability of systems, products, or assets, thereby increasing efficiency in performance and cost.
About Reliability Engineers
With the advancement of information technology (IT), site reliability engineers (SREs) have emerged as critical players in the automation of business operations. Their work premise is on the idea that the use of software systems can help improve operations and infrastructures. As a result, REs work on improving performance, efficiency, capacity planning, and other similar aspects of software involved in services.
Reliability engineering has the potential to immensely increase efficiency as it searches for ways to improve the reliability of systems and production. REs will thus allow other departments such as IT, product development, and the like to focus more on building new services. Some of the tasks that may be associated with REs include refining service center tools or implementing monitoring solutions for servers.
REs must be able to look at a system and understand all the connections that exist within it. As a result, they are not only involved in site reliability and performance but also ensure the prevention of failures from happening or occurring again. Risk management, in particular, plays a pivotal role in reliability engineering. To do this, REs would typically make use of root cause analyses and address the issues accordingly. They also work hand-in-hand with other teams to ensure that the costs of risk may become mitigated. Ultimately, a reliability engineer attempts to optimize performance and improve operations through the use of different tools and technologies.
Reliability Engineers in Industry 4.0
With the emergence of the so-called Industry 4.0 or fourth industrial revolution, the use of technologies such as AI, machine learning, and automation has become more pronounced. Though the technologies in Industry 4.0 are still relatively new, this Gentle Tackle states that the numerous challenges that come with adapting them have coupled with equally enormous potential.
These new technologies and processes present several opportunities for reliability engineers as they are commonly associated with using innovative practices and embracing change in automation. The emphasis on big data is also giving way for the potential to create systems capable of better decision-making.
Though reliability engineering may appear to focus on IT-related work, this is not limited to technological companies. In this day and age, automation is becoming more significant to increase productivity and efficiency in the chain of business operations. Reliability engineers will ensure that critical systems are continually running and delivering quality performance. Likewise, they attempt to solve system issues that may be impeding operations and come up with ways to prevent the same problems from happening in the future.