Impacts and Challenges of Industry 4.0

Industry 4.0 is not just about investing in new technology and tools to make process improvements, change the manufacturing execution or boost productivity and efficiency, it’s about revolutionizing the way your entire business operates and grows in all the value chain.

Robotics, Big Data, artificial intelligence, cognitive technologies, nanotechnology and Internet of Things. Along with 3D printing, augmented reality and other digital innovations to create a smart factory for your company.

1.What are the impacts of Industry 4.0?

The impacts of the Fourth Industrial Revolution can be felt at multiple levels: in ecosystems, at the organizational as well as individual (client) level:

– Ecosystems. In addition to the change in which horizontal and vertical systems operate, Industry 4.0 affects all the people who are part of the supply chain: suppliers, customers, board of directors, partner programs, among others. 

– Organizations. The ability to adjust and learn from data in real time can make organizations more responsive, efficient and productive. It also enables the organization to reduce its productivity risks, have preventive maintenance and smart manufacture in products.

– Individuals: Industry 4.0 can mean different things to everyone. For example, for employees it may mean changes in their inventory management, optimized processes and smart machines that are actual autonomous robots. While for customers it could mean digitally transformed processes and greater customization in products and services that better meet their needs.

2.What are the challenges of Industry 4.0?

Finding the right Industry 4.0 fit. The true challenge is that it isn’t always clear for companies which innovation initiative to adopt. Fourth Industrial Revolution offers a variety of options which carry high complexity risks due to the little experience we have in the implementation processes. That is why it is decisive for companies to make an exhaustive analysis and have a ROI calculator to make this great investment a success.

And for those companies that have already selected Industry 4.0, there are still barriers to  overcome. A real world example would be: How will companies build paths to select, justify and leverage the functionalities available to them?

From a technology perspective, increased connectivity and cloud computing mean that issues like cyber physical systems and data ownership must be addressed. Companies must choose projects that are consistent with their business process, identify what the benefits of these technologies are and create the infrastructure to be able to incorporate them successfully.

Here are the main Industry 4.0 challenges you may face in the not so distant future:

● New business models — the definition of a new strategy

● Rethinking your organization and processes to maximise new outcomes

● Understanding your business case

● Conducting successful pilots

● Helping your organization to understand where action is needed

● Change management, something that is too often overlooked

● Examination of company culture

● The genuine interconnection of all departments

● Recruiting and developing new talent

The Internet of Things (IoT) will connect machines and systems and allow seamless data transmission across all departments of a workplace, opening up opportunities for entirely new business models in manufacturing, computing, and many other industries.

Benefits of Industry 4.0:

Similar to digital transformation, the benefits of Industry 4.0 will ultimately help a business become smarter and more efficient. Here are the key benefits of the new industrial revolution…

● Enhanced productivity through optimisation and automation

● Real-time data for real-time supply chains in a real-time economy

● Greater business continuity through advanced maintenance and monitoring possibilities

● Higher quality products as a result of real-time monitoring, IoT-enabled quality improvement and cobots

● Better working conditions and superior sustainability

● Personalisation opportunities that will earn the trust and loyalty the modern consumer

With an understanding of what you have to gain from harnessing the power of Industry 4.0, taking the actions required to realise it will be all the more easier.

It’s true that Industry 4.0 comes with its fair share of challenges, but by facing them head on it’s clear to see that you have everything to gain.