Gibbs Die Casting: Flexible and Easy

A company like Gibbs Die Casting, headquartered in Henderson, KY, has certainly seen a lot of changes since its founding in 1965. One major change has been in the way they communicate with their employees. “Originally we had CCTV that ran through our campus – at one point in time we had seven buildings on our campus – and the CCTV system did the job back in the day. But as equipment died, we wanted to replace it,” says Christopher Haire, Director of Information Technology. The next step was digital signage. “We were already doing a lot of emails and other electronic ways of communicating, so this was sort of a natural progression.”

Haire is certainly a man who leverages modern technology. When we spoke with him, he was on the factory floor, ducking into a vacant office to tell us about how Gibbs is using AxisTV digital signage software. “Ease of use is how they got us,” he says. “The people here don’t have a lot of programming experience, but they do have a lot of PowerPoint experience.”

Transitioning to AxisTV was a simple process for Haire and his team. “This software works well with multiple browsers,” he explains. “I use a lot of technology. I can use my iPad, Chrome, Safari, all with no problems.” He also appreciates the user-friendly interface. “It has better control, and I really like the tabs feature. You can find things easier. I also like the dashboard you get on it. And the upgrade was simple, too. The support person who helped us was great.”

At a manufacturing plant, most messages necessarily relate to on-site issues. “Safety is one of our main concerns. We really preach safety first.” They also use the digital signage system to display HR announcements, action notice alerts, customer events and a feed from a local TV station. “Another thing we use it for is weather and radar – if we have a big storm, we can use the system to alert the employees.”

Nine displays are up at the Henderson campus, sending targeted information to employees and visitors. “We also have a sister company that connects through VPN and when they discovered that we have digital signage, they wanted it as well. They have their own media players and run four displays off of our server.” He also says that there are plans to roll out AxisTV to branches in Hungary, Brazil and China. Having a distributed information network appeals to Haire. “You can tailor it so that things that are relevant for one group go out to them but not to other groups.”

He also leverages the screensaver option to turn every dormant computer into a digital sign. “Getting communications out to those desktops really helps us out,” he says. “The screensaver option lets us turn 250 monitors into screens as well. This helps us get to people wherever they might be. There is so much content that it takes 60 minutes for the playlist to cycle through, so we want to catch people whenever and wherever we can.”

While he has had positive comments from his audience, the main thing for Haire is that there aren’t any problems. “The content is always changing, and we have to approve six to eight slides a day. If this system were hard to use, I’d be hearing from them. They just go boom, boom, boom and they’re done.”

Ultimately, it’s the simplicity that he most appreciates. “Visix has easy to use software – that’s the number one selling point right there for me. It accepts lots of different types of media and lots of different types of content can be created and scheduled. It works with all kinds of devices and browsers and makes it easy to find things – all this helps our people create the content they want to and get it out there.”