Shifting from a focus on mass production to customized production
Evolving dynamics in the manufacturing industry have reshaped the structure and methods upon which factories operate—shifting from a focus on mass production to customized production. With consumers today intently focused on the personalization component of companies, products, and experiences, today’s factories are driven to implement technologies that are tailored to delivering products specifically manufactured to meet the needs of individual consumers and their unique preferences, personas, and demands.
By 2020, 50 percent of the Global 2000 companies will rely on their ability to create digital experiences, services, and products for dictating the future path of their business’ success, according to IDC. These digital experiences are aligned with the following technology innovations and are primed to become more prevalent in the manufacturing industry.
IoT connectivity among devices and manufacturing equipment in industrial transformation has made up more than $178 billion in 2016 and acts as a business differentiator, providing a leg up on the competition. With IoT implemented in factories, it’s possible to virtually monitor processes, products, and assets—providing business transparency and optimization. Deeper insights into the data regarding manufacturing operations and equipment allow workers and employers to automate processes and foresee possible issues, preventing problems before they occur and therefore maintaining operational efficiency. Likewise, IoT can provide real-time feedback and alert companies of defects and point out where potential issues and problems might lie. By placing factory machinery and other equipment online, some of the responsibilities of making operational decisions are moved into the hands of technology—therefore freeing up employees to utilize their manpower on more critical business tasks.
With this industrial shift from mass production to mass customization comes the ability for manufacturers to address customer demand and cater to the people who drive their business. Customers require intuitive products that are easy to interact with, so this also contributes to the pressure on factories to deliver goods that are software enabled and IoT connected. Instead of making long-term commitments to acquiring permanent equipment, manufacturers are taking advantage of the trend of pay-per-use business models for software, machines, equipment and digital services. Machine-to-machine (M2M) communication through IoT-enabled machinery increases automation of tasks and reduces the need for factory workers to manually resolve equipment failures, as machines can predict maintenance issues before they occur and remotely monitor assets. Overall, the impact of IoT and M2M communication has the potential to create such a powerful transition in the way that factories operate, transforming the entire mindset and operational structure of the manufacturing industry.
With solutions such as AR/VR, cognitive computing, and IoT, we can enhance your service capability and help you help your customers—morphing a typical experience into an excellent experience. Our solutions are well suited for agriculture, automotive, chemical and oil refining, consumer goods, food and beverage, steel, mining and more.
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