Welcome to Manufacturing in 2020.
Without wishing to be dramatic, it is only those companies who grasp the future, and the technologies that make it possible, that will succeed.
To understand how some of the best companies in the UK are actually doing that, we have pulled together a real brains trust of manufacturers. They all have different ideas about the issues and opportunities posed by digital transformation, but from their responses one can draw some very clear messages.
The first is that adoption is not an option, it is an imperative. It is how companies take the next step, and when, that is now important. The experts featured in this report offer very clear guidelines to those manufacturers thinking about how to take that next vital step in their digital transformation.
A recurring theme in this report is that these new technologies enable manufacturers to not only say they put the customer at the heart of everything they do, but to make it a reality.
By connecting data that flows from the manufacturing plant with data flowing from customer activities, all of which is then mediated through connected technologies, crunched in the Cloud and fed back into manufacturers’ systems, a wholly virtuous data loop is formed that enables manufacturers to achieve unprecedented levels of customer service. The insight this technology delivers is a powerful tool in ensuring the smoothest possible delivery of products and services.
It is also important to recognise that technological advances allow for constant evolution of manufacturing systems. To what extent will artificial intelligence (AI) begin to inform manufacturers’ decision making? It is obvious that the power that is being developed by the programmers, and woven into existing products through upgrades, will create intriguing new opportunities. Software that breaks down traditional silos means that we are getting closer to that Holy Grail in any business – a single version of the truth.