Defining the Scope of Smart Manufacturing and Industry 4.0
Smart manufacturing technologies are changing the game in the industry. New innovations and industry 4.0 are creating a more efficient and productive factory with better data reporting, giving manufacturers an easier time using real data to make informed decisions.
Read on to learn more about the technologies and scope of smart manufacturing and how it can be used to grow businesses exponentially to stay ahead of competitors and streamline processes.
What is Smart Manufacturing?
Smart manufacturing is a term used to describe the digitization of the manufacturing processes, including supply chains, production, logistics and distribution, sales, and stocking. It’s made up of many unique technologies and solutions that each play a role in the production process.
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Smart manufacturing utilizes the internet of things and industry 4.0 to connect these technologies, equipment, and software. Afterward, these technologies work together to record, report, and analyze streams of data using AI, machine learning, and automation to make more accurate predictions and decisions.
This connectivity and collaboration between machines helps to streamline supply chains, inventory management, and distribution. Connecting operations and helping manufacturers stay on the cutting edge of technology while becoming more efficient, productive, and competitive in their industry.
The Technologies that Make Up Smart Manufacturing and Industry 4.0
As mentioned above, smart manufacturing is made up of many different types of modern technologies.
Here are a few of the most common smart manufacturing technologies and how they help manufacturers optimize and streamline their operations.
AI and Machine Learning
AI and machine learning in smart manufacturing work together to gather more data and make data analysis faster and more accurate. Advanced AI and machine learning is more able now to also make simple decisions based on the analyzed data, decisions like predictive maintenance to anticipate upcoming needs.
Automation in manufacturing streamlines repetitive processes by giving them to robots who can perform them faster, more efficiently, and more accurately. This also allows humans to focus on tasks that require more critical thinking.
Cloud storage in manufacturing means not having to store critical data on-site, saving you space, money, and improving the overall security of the data. Cloud usage in manufacturing can also link multiple locations, combine datasets, and help you get a better overview of your business.
Smart Manufacturing Can Reach into Every Part of a Business
When we say that smart manufacturing technology makes your business more transparent, we mean it. With these new innovations implemented, you’ll get a better idea of how each part of your operation is performing, down to the smallest details, because it becomes noted in the data that’s being tracked by an array of sensors set up across your entire operation.
Is a machine slowing down and lowering production? If so, the data collected by the sensors inside will help you see the slowdown, identify the cause, order parts, and schedule maintenance before it gets bad enough to truly affect output. In this example, not only does this maintain steady production, it saves money by decreasing potential downtime before it happens.
With the right technology, this becomes standard across your entire business, including the factory floor, shipping, supply chains, production, logistics and distribution, sales, stocking, and supply. With a clearer view of your business, smart technology helps you adjust on the fly based on real data in all corners of your operation.
How Does Smart Manufacturing Help Manufacturers Grow?
Smart manufacturing helps manufacturers grow by giving them the tools and technology needed to outpace their competition and understand where within their operation they can improve, streamline, and optimize.
With the data collected by the connected sensors across a factory floor, businesses that use smart technology have a better understanding of what’s working, what’s not, and what can be improved. This advantage over those who aren’t gathering this data is immense and can be used to stay multiple steps ahead of the competition.
What Comes Next in Smart Manufacturing?
The future of smart manufacturing is being written every day as new technologies are created and digital innovation experts continue to find exciting ways to utilize them within supply chains, on factory floors, and everywhere else that they can.
If you want to learn more about smart manufacturing and what it can do for your business, take a look at one of our latest videos on the benefits of smart technology or read our new eBook on creating a more modern and efficient supply chain.