Advances in the tech world have affected many sectors. Manufacturing is no exception – in fact, it’s seen some of its biggest transformations in the last couple of decades. And it seems like we’re barely scratching the surface of what’s possible in some specific areas, like those based on artificial intelligence. Digital transformation in manufacturing has spilled over into other areas as well – suppliers and customers interacting with the industrial sector have also benefited significantly.
How the Manufacturing Industry Is Reshaping
Various developments have occurred in just the last few years, let alone the last decade, that have driven the manufacturing sector forward faster than ever before. New technologies have arrived to the market, including machine learning which alone has transformed many areas of our lives. Then we have IoT and Industry 4.0, and a strong push for analyzing data in more detail. Companies have been adapting their services and business models very fast in order to meet their needs in an evolving market.
Future Challenges the Sector Faces
At this point, there are several factors that can be pointed out as holding the industry back, and being clear bottlenecks. IT departments have found themselves buried under their new workloads in some cases, needing to adapt to many new developments and solutions. There are also some ethical questions on the horizon, like the rapid replacement of human jobs with automated solutions. Budget limitations are now more critical than ever before, and this has required companies to change their approach in different ways.
How Digital Solutions Are Changing the Landscape
It’s not hard to find examples of changes on the industrial front that have been driven by technological advancements. There has been a stronger focus on identifying comprehensive B2B eCommerce solutions and integrating them deeply into the company’s infrastructure. Big data is also an ever-present force at this point, allowing companies to unlock their full potential in terms of data collection and analysis. We also have examples of companies drastically boosting their productivity without having to invest in any new human resources. Companies can now predict future market developments with greater precision, allowing them to optimize their production and focus on areas with a strong potential.
The Most Important Digital Trends in Manufacturing Today
- Machine Learning
Machine learning is now present in many sectors, not just the industrial one. From finance to healthcare and entertainment, we can easily see its impact. Machines can now work with large datasets that have been analyzed in depth, optimizing their workflows and improving the overall productivity of assembly lines. Machine learning is also beneficial for humans, as it can be trained on a number of datasets that could lead to optimization opportunities. Physical allocation of working space, waiting times, and more can now be optimized to an extreme level of precision.
- Industry 4.0
Industry 4.0 refers to a modern approach to industrial processes that involves digital solutions on a deep level. Its name comes from the fact that many see it as the “fourth” industrial revolution, and it’s heavily based on optimizing processes in ways that their parameters can be adjusted in real time, based on fresh data. Machines can now communicate with each other and modify their behavior according to the current state of the factory as a whole.
Some use the terms Industry 4.0 and IoT (Internet of Things) interchangeably, though that’s not correct. IoT refers to the growing number of devices connected to the internet, including ones found on the consumer market. In factory settings, this is commonly used to bring machines together on the same network, improving the overall efficiency of the plant and ensuring that every factor involved in daily work is optimized as much as possible.
- B2B eCommerce
The B2B eCommerce sector has been going through lots of new developments. Modern platforms can streamline the traditional purchasing process to a large degree, including customized checkout workflows, pricing, personalization, and more. At the same time, they can keep running various complex analytical tasks to constantly optimize their performance.
A lot has already happened in the manufacturing sector as a result of the tighter integration of technological solutions. Companies can now use their data better than ever before. Complex analytical systems can parse large volumes of information and optimize corresponding processes, while systems and platforms that rely on each other’s data can now be connected seamlessly. Error rates in processes have been decreasing due to this strong approach to optimization. And we’re already seeing a lot of focus on innovating and integrating modern solutions as soon as they gain traction on the market. Companies are now able to respond to customer demands better than ever before, and can make on-the-fly adjustments to their production to meet the changing needs of the market.
Preparing Your Organization for Digital Transformations in Manufacturing
It’s important to be prepared for the coming changes and to know what to expect. Manufacturers are now practically forced to innovate if they want to stay relevant, and adapting modern technologies is key to that. Using the right CRM and eCommerce solutions can lead to significant improvements in the way of optimization and customer satisfaction. Popular platforms like OroCRM and OroCommerce have become prevalent in many areas, allowing companies to harness the true potential of their operations. One major advantage of Oro’s solutions is the seamless integration they offer for a number of different systems and platforms that are commonly found in this sector.
Adopting modern trends in the industrial sector can lead to significant improvements in efficiency and the ability to deliver relevant results. The sooner you start with this, the better – the market is moving faster than ever before, and only those who prioritize the adoption of these solutions are going to see their businesses survive in the future. A lot has happened in just the last two years alone, so it’s safe to assume that the landscape is going to be practically unrecognizable a decade from now – and those who’ve stayed in touch with current trends are going to be the ones to survive that transformation.