Manufacturing is constantly evolving. Industry has quickly adopted new technologies from power generation and electrification to automation and the digital age. As a result of all these innovations, manufacturing efficiency became possible.
Manufacturing has been part of IoT (Internet of Things) for a handful of years now. Many companies have embedded sensor-based technology into their devices for decades, but they had not realized its potential until now.
Manufacturing was amongst the first industries to adopt robots and automated processes. Machines that signaled a machine malfunction had sensors which identified and addressed the problem before it stopped working. Therefore, this prevented downtime.
Today, IoT and new data processing technologies and the availability of analytic forecasting models make it possible to take advantage of this sensor technology throughout the manufacturing value chain.
A clear example of this is building modern fighter jets almost entirely from outsourced parts. A major manufacturer of these jets has a digital supply chain that is supported by advanced predictive analytics. It coordinates three main partners, nine countries and 40,000 individual parts.
They also have thousands of suppliers, which allows them to build one jet per hour. This is a drastic improvement on the old process which used to take months or even years.
Analytics and IoT add value to the industry in terms of manufacturing efficiency and growth. Throughout its history, manufacturing has been an integral part of the Internet of Things (IoT) in many ways.
Use IoT Analytics to Achieve Manufacturing Efficiency
If correctly implemented, there can be drastic growth opportunities. Next, we will minutely discuss the way in which IoT analytics is having an impact on manufacturing.
- Making smarter products: connectivity between individuals and machines creates opportunities for the production of smarter products and services. In addition, manufacturers gain access to essential information on product performance in the marketplace, consumer information, and options they should consider.
Analyzing consumer data, for example, can provide auto manufacturers with valuable information about future products. For instance, it may help them choose what options they should include in a performance or sports package. Manufacturing companies can benefit from analytics because they will be able to analyze signals between devices and data to assist in proactive management of product defects and warranty issues.
- Maintaining relationships with clients: manufacturers can also benefit from increased visibility after selling a product. IoT data can give insights into brand loyalty that can be used to create new services. No longer is the sale of an automobile a sign of a broken relationship with the dealer or manufacturer. Thanks to IoT, automakers can be more visible to customers after they have purchased a product, since they receive crucial data about products’ performance through sensors.
This data gives way to a much better understanding of customers’ interactions with cars as well as what can be done to improve relationships with dealers, consumers, and third parties. Even retaining a small number of customers could easily result in significant revenue growth for manufacturers. The auto industry is still learning about the essential importance of identifying new business models.
- Driving innovation in engineering: the cycle time to create, design and manufacture new products is decreasing, since it used to take five years to create a new automobile model.
To summarize, IoT in manufacturing is all about creating smarter products, maintaining relationships with customers and accelerating innovation.
In the modern era, the process is much faster. Thanks to the reduction in cycle time and the intelligence gained about the product and its performance, manufacturers can bring quick and better products to the market.