Digital transformation in manufacturing industry
The manufacturing industry has been embarking on digital transformation since Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0 which focuses on automation of traditional manufacturing and industrial practices, using modern smart technology. IoT and large-scale M2M (machine-to-machine communication) are integrated to increase automation, improve communication and self-monitoring, and develop smart machines that can diagnose and analyse issues without the need for human interaction. All of us are in the middle of a digital revolution and transformation and participation in this transformational journey is no longer optional.
What is Digital Transformation?
We are now increasingly depending on smart machines that can monitor, analyse and diagnose without much human intervention. Further, business decision-making is based on data insights and the transition from manual to autonomous processes.
Transformative technologies that are enabling this revolution are,
- Big data
- Artificial intelligence (AI)
- Machine Learning (ML)
- Internet of Things (IoT)
At every stage of the manufacturing process, these technologies facilitate communication among various arms of the organization thus enabling data-based decisions and collaboration among various teams and business units. A number of organizations are building expertise and providing services to support manufacturing companies embarking on this journey of digital transformation.
Digital Transformation in Manufacturing Industry
In manufacturing industry, change is constant. Manufacturing enterprises are regularly tasked to adapt to technological advances in addition to political and economic shifts. In this competitive and ever evolving environment, manufacturers must keep up with the rapid advancement of technology by adapting to digital transformation.
The following are some ways in which digital transformation is benefitting the manufacturing industry:
- 1. Redefining and simplifying processes
- 2. Reducing errors and eliminating waste
- 3. Improving internal collaboration
- 4. Data driven decision making
- 5. Reducing costs and lead-times
- 6. Meeting the customer's needs
- 7. Growing business
1. Refining Processes
There is an incredible amount of focus on process refinement in manufacturing since it is largely a process-driven industry by combining, elimination and collaborating. Digital transformation makes this possible.
Automating processes is an important step in that direction. As a result, manual errors can be reduced, production inefficiencies can be automatically detected, new ideas can be tested more economically, and workers can be more efficiently employed.
Digitally-enabled tools like disruption analytics, KPI monitoring, and other tools help improve processes in real-time. As a result, manufacturers can identify bottlenecks, opportunities and improve processes quickly.
As machines are developed and deployed, machine learning enables them to be programmed with instructions and intelligence for self-monitoring and potentially refining processes continuously.
2. Increasing revenue & reducing costs
PwC reports global revenues will increase by $493 billion and costs will fall by $421 billion by 2020 based on a survey of more than 2,000 participants from 26 countries.
The many opportunities brought about by digital transformation are responsible for these figures. By digitizing and integrating vertical and horizontal value chains, organizations can implement processes and products that are cohesive.
The development of digital products with analytical capabilities and the integration of new methods of data collection and analysis can help manufacturers better understand and respond to customers' needs.
By utilizing disruptive digital business models, performance and cost can be optimized throughout the organization. A reduction in costs and a growth in revenues are the results of all these factors.
3. Meeting the customer's needs
According to a Harvard Business Review study of 75,000 people, reducing customer effort is one of the most important factors in building customer loyalty.
In the quest for product information, getting customer service, or meeting their needs more quickly, customers value the path of least effort. Here's where innovation's speed comes into play. Manufacturing companies must create software-enabled and connected products first!
This can only be achieved with a digital factory design in which development, production, and other cycles are seamlessly integrated without being siloed as in traditional processes. All of these cycles can now operate in tandem and innovate at a much faster pace, thanks to digitization.
"Smart factories" are capable of making product decisions, such as design, material selection, scheduling, and pricing. A personalized product would be created and the overall customer experience would be enhanced exponentially.
How digitization will be beneficial for the manufacturing industry?
As digitization transforms manufacturing, the first thing we are seeing is speed. Digitalization increases productivity substantially, enabling projects to move faster and manufacturers to meet more aggressive deadlines.
- Improved accuracy & speed
- Everyone has real-time access to the same data, thus ensuring transparency
- Tracking every step of the process is easy
- There is no manual document work, which means there is no wasted time
- It improves your overall performance and collaboration
- It is easy to create the perfect production plan. No more overproduction.
- And many more....
Industry 4.0: From digital transformation to intelligent manufacturing
As we move towards industry 4.0, digitization doesn't mean the end of digital transformation. Instead, it marks the beginning. Digitalization of processes leads to the development of additional technologies such as machine learning, artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things (IoT), digital twins, and a comprehensive, complete product lifecycle.
As one can infer from these details, digital transformation is vital for manufacturers to stay competitive and relevant in the present competitive environment.
NeuroGaint helps manufacturers to embrace digital transformation successfully and grow their business. To understand the why and how, please get in touch with us.