Article | December 10, 2021
IoT in the manufacturing industry introduces a superior technology that is coming up as a blessing for the industry. Manufacturers are enjoying one-of-a-kind benefits and returns on their reinvestments in IoT. Benefits such as enhanced productivity, work safety, reduced downtime, cost-effective operations, and more such benefits of IoT in manufacturing make it more and more popular with each passing day.
The global IoT market is estimated to reach a value of USD 1,386.06 billion by 2026 from USD 761.4 billion in 2020 at a CAGR of 10.53 percent over the forecast period of 2021-2026. So the whole worldwide market of IoT has a bright future in the following years.
“As technology takes over and enhances many of the processes we used to handle with manual labor, we are freed up to use our minds creatively, which leads to bigger and better leaps in innovation and productivity.”
– Matt Mong, VP Market Innovation and Project Business Evangelist at Adeaca
Let’s check out below some exciting facts about IoT in manufacturing and see how IoT makes a difference in the manufacturing industry.
IoT in Manufacturing: Some Interesting Facts
According to PwC, 91% of industrial/manufacturing enterprises in Germany invest in "digital factories" that use IoT solutions.
According to the International Federation of Robotics (IFR), China employs more industrial robots than any other country (many of which are connected to the internet in some way).
According to IoT Analytics, the industrial sector spent more than $64 billion on IoT in 2018 and expects investment in Industry 4.0 to reach $310 billion by 2023.
According to the Eclipse Foundation, most IoT developers are focused on developing smart agriculture systems (26%), while industrial automation is another big focus area (26%). However, home automation is dwindling in popularity, accounting for just 19% of projects.
How Does IoT Work for the Manufacturing Industry?
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a network of interconnected devices that communicate with one another and with other networks. While IoT-enabled devices are capable of various tasks, they are primarily employed to collect data and carry out specific tasks. The implementation of the Internet of Things in manufacturing is often referred to as the IIoT, or Industrial Internet of Things.
IoT makes use of 'smart' devices to collect, process, and act on data. These intelligent devices are equipped with sensors and other software that enable them to communicate and exchange data inside the network.
IoT-enabled equipment gives crucial real-time data that enables manufacturers or machine operators to make informed decisions. So, how does it function in practice?
Sensors capture data from the system and transfer it to the cloud, where it can be analyzed.
The data is transferred to the quality assurance system.
The data that has been analyzed is forwarded to the end-user.
How the IoT is Improving Manufacturing Business Operations
The Internet of Things (IoT) has numerous benefits for the manufacturing industry. We'll go over some of the significant benefits that the Internet of Things brings to the manufacturing business.
Energy Efficiency Solutions
Energy is a high cost in manufacturing. Unfortunately, the current industrial energy infrastructure can only track excessive energy consumption.
The utility bills include the factory's energy consumption records. But, unfortunately, nobody can break down energy consumption to the device level and find out the underperforming pieces. Some energy usage monitoring tools exist, but they only provide partial data, making system analysis difficult.
IoT can help by giving device-level energy data. The sensors will detect any underperforming devices in the network and alert you so you can take action. As a result, the technology can help you reduce energy waste and find other ways to save it.
Data is required to determine trends and quality of production at a manufacturing facility. It also helps manufacturers plan and anticipates changes. These forecasts can help with inventory management, employment, cost control, and other operational procedures. Thus, IoT technology makes it easier to foresee and optimize customer requirements.
The Internet of Things (IoT) uses sensors to gather data about assets' health and productivity. In addition, it uses advanced analytics to give actionable information. These are presented on an appealing dashboard connected to your smart device. This allows for predictive maintenance to be used in the manufacturing industry.
Superior Product Quality
Every manufacturer is determined to produce a high-quality product at a low cost. Therefore, a minor quality modification can have a significant influence on the manufacturing firm.
Customer happiness, waste reduction, sales, and profit can all benefit from high-quality products. But making high-quality products isn't easy.
The Internet of Things (IoT) can assist you in this endeavor. Poorly set, calibrated, and maintained equipment are some of the main reasons for low-quality products. Worst of all, many small things sometimes go ignored as the final product seems perfect. Quality tests show the product is fine, but your consumers start having problems after a couple of months.
Imagine the resources needed to identify and correct the problem. Sensors in an IoT network detect even minimal tweaks in setup and alert operators. The team might momentarily stop production to address the issue before the production cycle gets complete.
Rapid and Informed Decision-Making
The IoT can dramatically improve organizational decision-making. It unlocks vital data about network equipment performance and delivers it to the right person.
Managers and field operators can use this data to improve plant processes and overall production.
In addition to these significant benefits, IoT in manufacturing can help manufacturers improve their manufacturing operations and construct a unit that meets the vision of the smart factory of 2040. The future beyond IoT would be the icing on the cake for all of us, as technology has always amazed us.
Imagine the day when IoT and AI merge, and the virtual gadgets controlled by IoT are the next major milestone. Then, the ideal combination of robotics, AI, and VR may reduce the manufacturing plant size and cost while increasing the output to a level that is unimaginable and unattainable as of now.
Airbus Improved Production Efficiency with Its Factory of the Future Concept
It's a massive task for a commercial airliner to be assembled. The expense of making a mistake throughout making such a craft can be significant, as there are millions of parts and thousands of assembly phases. Airbus has established a digital manufacturing effort called Factory of the Future to optimize operations and increase production capacity. The company has installed sensors on factory floor tools and machinery and supplied workers with wearable technologies, such as industrial smart glasses, to reduce errors and improve workplace safety. The wearable allowed for a 500% increase in efficiency while eliminating nearly all mistakes in one process named cabin seat marking.
While the benefits of IoT devices have long been a topic of discussion among technology enthusiasts, the incorporation of IoT in manufacturing is creating a new buzz in the industry. The benefits of IoT in manufacturing, such as remote analysis of operations, processes, and products, are assisting manufacturers in establishing a more productive manufacturing unit. As a result of these benefits, IoT use in manufacturing is accelerating. Recognize the IoT's potential and take a step toward incorporating it into your manufacturing operation in 2022.
What is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT)?
IIoT stands for Industrial Internet of Things. It uses data to improve industrial efficiency. To enhance industrial performance, it uses embedded sensors, cloud data, and connected devices.
Why is the IoT changing manufacturing?
Real-time monitoring of machines and accurate reporting for better decisions are possible through IoT. This improves business strategies and project control. Thus, the Internet of Things has a significant impact on the profitability of any manufacturing company.
How does the IoT transform the way we do business?
We can use data collected by IoT devices to improve efficiency and help organizations make better decisions. They tell organizations the truth, not what they hope or believe.
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"name": "How does the IoT transform the way we do business?",
"text": "We can use data collected by IoT devices to improve efficiency and help organizations make better decisions. They tell organizations the truth, not what they hope or believe."
Article | March 29, 2022
The lean manufacturing process is the most time-tested, dependable, and proven method of manufacturing. It has helped numerous notable firms worldwide to reduce production waste and optimize their overall manufacturing operations. Many lean tools, such as 5S lean manufacturing, JIT, and Kanban, have helped manufacturers be more productive and efficient than ever before.
“Lean is a way of thinking, not a list of things to do.”
– Shigeo Shingo, a Japanese Industrial Engineer
In 2014, 29% of manufacturers had implemented lean manufacturing or intended to do so. (Source: MAXIML)
This article highlights lean manufacturing principles and the most commonly used lean tools. We will also look into the three lean manufacturing examples that will help us understand how lean manufacturing techniques may help manufacturing organizations become more successful.
Lean Manufacturing Principles
Value is always determined in terms of the customer's requirements for a particular product. For instance, what is the manufacturing and delivery schedule? What is the cost? What more critical requirements or expectations must be met? This information is vital when it comes to defining value.
The next step after value is to map the "value stream," or all the steps and processes involved in creating a given product, from raw materials to delivery to the client. Value-stream mapping outlines all the steps that move a product or service through a process. Processes might be in design or customer service. The objective is to "map" the movement of material or product through the process on one sheet. The purpose is to identify and eliminate unwanted steps. Some call it process re-engineering. This practice also helps to understand the entire business function.
After removing waste from the value stream, the next step is to ensure there are no interruptions, delays, or bottlenecks. "Sequence the value-creating steps closely so the product or service flows smoothly toward the customer," LEI suggests. This may require breaking down silo thinking and becoming cross-functional across all departments, which can be difficult for lean projects to accomplish. However, studies indicate that this can significantly improve efficiency and productivity, often by up to 50%.
With better flow, the time it takes to get a product to market (or to the customer) can be greatly reduced. As a result, "just in time" manufacturing or delivery becomes simpler. This means that the consumer has the ability to "pull" the product from you at any time (often in weeks instead of months). As a result, the manufacturer or provider and the client save money by not having to build things or store resources in advance.
Developing lean thinking and process optimization part of your organizational culture is the most crucial step. Remember that lean is not a static system that takes continual effort and care to perfect. Lean should be implemented by all employees. Experts claim a process is not fully lean until it has been value-stream mapped a dozen times.
The Most Used Lean Manufacturing Tools
Lean manufacturing employs a variety of lean tools to optimize output and efficiency by making the most use of available resources. Lean manufacturing seeks to improve processes by demanding less work, time, and resources. Specific lean tools may be more suited to one type of business than another. On the other hand, 5S lean manufacturing, Kaizen, Kanban, Value Stream Mapping, and Focus PDCA are among the most useful lean tools.
Three Examples of Lean Manufacturing
Toyota was the first big company to adopt the lean manufacturing process. They have mastered lean manufacturing techniques to minimize defective products that do not meet client expectations. Toyota achieves this goal through two key methods. The first is Jidoka, which means "mechanization with human assistance." While some portions of the operation are automated, humans regularly examine the product's quality. There are extra programs in the system that can shut down the machines if there is a problem.
The second method is called the JIT model. Individual cars can be made as per order using JIT inside the Toyota Production System, but each component must fit precisely the first time due to a lack of alternatives. Therefore, pre-existing production issues cannot be overlooked and resolved quickly.
Computer chip maker Intel implemented lean manufacturing techniques to produce better products with zero defects. This approach has helped to minimize the manufacturing time from three months to ten days. Intel eventually learned that manufacturing low-quality things would not enhance earnings or customer satisfaction. Instead, both parties gain from quality control and waste reduction methods. This is especially true in the electronics business, where products are constantly updated.
John Deere has implemented a lean manufacturing process. Many of their quality control techniques are completely automated, allowing for faster inspection of more parts. This means more products flow out of the door each day, and the consumer gets a better deal. These controls also monitor how each part of their products is made, so they don't overproduce and waste valuable resources.
Being successful with lean manufacturing techniques is a notable achievement for any organization because it involves eliminating redundant efforts, finances, and processes that have hindered your business's growth for an extended period. Recognize your business requirements and select the appropriate lean tool. Ultimately, lean is not just a method; it is an attitude that every manufacturing organization must adopt.
What is the objective of lean manufacturing?
Lean manufacturing aims to improve product quality, cut down on waste, speed up production, and save money.
What are the drawbacks to lean production?
Using lean techniques reduces the error margin. Late supply deliveries can lead to shortages of raw materials and delayed deliveries. This flaw can damage client relationships, drive customers to competitors, and cost you money.
Is lean still applicable today?
Lean manufacturing is relevant now and will be for years to come. So, this might be an exciting opportunity for lean manufacturing to evolve in a new space with new resources.
Article | January 20, 2022
A smart factory that leverages Industry 4.0 concepts to elevate its operations has long been a model for other industries that are still figuring out how to travel the digital manufacturing route. Smart manufacturing technology is all you need to know if you're looking to cash in on this trend.
“Industry 4.0 is not really a revolution. It’s more of an evolution.”
– Christian Kubis
In this article, we'll look at the advantages that many smart factory pioneers are getting from their smart factories. In addition, we will look at the top smart factory examples and understand how they applied the Industry 4.0 idea and excelled in their smart manufacturing adoption.
Industry 4.0 Technology Benefits
Manufacturing Industry 4.0 has several benefits that can alter the operations of manufacturers. Beyond optimization and automation, smart manufacturing Industry 4.0 aims to uncover new business prospects and models by increasing the efficiency, speed, and customer focus of manufacturing and associated industries.
Key benefits of Manufacturing Industry 4.0 in production include:
Improved productivity and efficiency
Increased collaboration and knowledge sharing
Better agility and adaptability
Improved customer experience
Reduced costs and increased profitability
Creates opportunities for innovation
World Smart Factory Case Studies and Lessons to Be Learned
Schneider Electric, France SAS
Schneider Electric's le Vaudreuil plant is a prime example of a smart factory Industry 4.0, having been regarded as one of the most modern manufacturing facilities in the world, utilizing Fourth Industrial Revolution technologies on a large scale. The factory has included cutting-edge digital technology, such as the EcoStruxureTM Augmented Operator Advisor, which enables operators to use augmented reality to accelerate operation and maintenance, resulting in a 2–7% increase in productivity. EcoStruxureTM Resource Advisor's initial deployment saves up to 30% on energy and contributes to long-term improvement.
Johnson & Johnson DePuy Synthes, Ireland
DePuy Synthes' medical device manufacturing plant, which started in 1997, just underwent a multimillion-dollar makeover to better integrate digitalization and Industry 4.0 smart manufacturing. Johnson & Johnson made a big investment in the Internet of Things. By linking equipment, the factory used IoT technology to create digital representations of physical assets (referred to as “digital twins”). These digital twins resulted in sophisticated machine insights. As a result of these insights, the company was able to reduce operating expenditures while simultaneously reducing machine downtime.
Bosch's Wuxi factory's digital transformation uses IIoT and big data. The company integrates its systems to keep track of the whole production process at its facilities. Embedding sensors in production machinery collects data on machine status and cycle time. When data is collected, complicated data analytics tools analyze it in real-time and alert workers to production bottlenecks. This strategy helps forecast equipment failures and allows the organization to arrange maintenance ahead of time. As a consequence, the manufacturer's equipment may run for longer.
The Tesla Gigafactory, Germany
According to Tesla, the Berlin Gigafactory is the world's most advanced high-volume electric vehicle production plant. On a 300-hectare facility in Grünheide, it produces batteries, powertrains, and cars, starting with the Model Y and Model 3. For Tesla, the goal is not merely to make a smart car, but also to construct a smart factory. The plant's photographs reveal an Industry 4.0 smart factory with solar panels on the roof, resulting in a more sustainable production method. On its official website, Tesla claimed to use cutting-edge casting methods and a highly efficient body shop to improve car safety. Tesla's relentless pursuit of manufacturing efficiency has allowed them to revolutionize the car industry.
The SmartFactoryKL was established to pave the way for the future's "intelligent factory." It is the world's first manufacturer-independent Industry 4.0 production facility, demonstrating the value of high-quality, flexible manufacturing and the effectiveness with which it can be deployed. The last four years, SmartFactoryKL has been guided by particular strategic objectives that drive innovation; the aim is to see artificial intelligence integrated into production. Two instances of AI-driven transformations include an "order-to-make' mass customization platform and a remote AI-enabled, intelligent service cloud platform that anticipates maintenance needs before they occur.
Enabling smart manufacturing means using the latest technology to improve processes and products. The aforementioned smart factory examples are industry leaders and are thriving by implementing Industry 4.0 technology. Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) may use these smart factory examples to learn about the adoption process, challenges, and solutions. Industry 4.0 is aimed at improving enterprises and minimizing human effort in general. So adopt the smart factory concept and be productive.
What is the difference between a smart factory and a digital factory?
The digital factory enables the planning of factories using virtual reality and models, whereas the smart factory enables the operation and optimization of factories in real time.
Where does Industry 4.0 come from?
The term "Industry 4.0" was coined in Germany to represent data-driven, AI-powered, networked "smart factories" as the fourth industrial revolution's forerunner.
Article | January 4, 2022
Lead generation for manufacturers has always been tough due to a lack of knowledge about new technology and trends that can help them generate more business leads. There are still a lot of small and mid-sized manufacturing companies that rely on antiquated manufacturer lead generation methods.
In this article, we'll discuss some proven methods for generating leads that can help you increase your company's sales and improve your overall return on investment.
"Don’t think of your lead as "LEADS." Instead, think of them as people who are frustrated because understanding and buying your product is too hard. Your job is to make it easy for them to learn about your product and get started. "
—Andy Pitre, VP of Product, HubSpot
So let's get started.
Factors That Must Be Aligned to Drive New Business Leads
Landing pages are mini-websites embedded into your site. To deliver an experience that speaks directly to the user's intent, marketers use landing pages. Create unique landing pages for every industrial lead generation campaign.
To generate quality leads, you need to have a strong call to action (CTA). CTAs are usually buttons that allow users to submit information, visit a landing page, or download an e-book or white paper.
Your CTA must be compelling. Give your prospects a reason to click and remove any barriers to the click. CTAs should be bold, high-contrast, and easily identifiable.
Without forms, it is impossible to collect leads. Therefore, visitors will be asked to fill out forms that collect their contact information in exchange for an offer.
Every lead contains a transaction. A company provides a valuable service in exchange for a prospect's contact information. You won't get many leads unless you provide value to your potential customers.
This offer comes in the form of an e-book, consultation, coupon code, or whitepaper. To generate more leads, make compelling offers.
The above components can't exist if you don't have a website. If you want to emphasize your business, you need to generate quality leads. Why? Because most of today's B2B buyers are millennials, who are highly tech-savvy and increasingly conduct their supplier research online.
How to Generate Manufacturing Leads: 5 Effective Techniques
Create a Website That Converts
"The lead generation process starts by finding out where our target market ‘lives’ on the web."
– Wayne Davis
Your website should be a trusted source of quality leads. Unfortunately, many companies lose sight of this and develop websites that are cumbersome and difficult to browse, causing a rift between you and your potential customers.
Don't expect people to behave if your site doesn't encourage them to act. Your website should have clear "call to action" buttons and lead capture options that allow visitors to contact you in a simple and pleasant way.
Additionally, there are website optimization tools available, including PageSpeed Insights, Hotjar, Google Optimize, and WAVE. All of the above-mentioned website optimization tools provide complimentary services. So, this is the most accessible and most reliable approach to generating web leads.
Make Descriptive Infographics
Infographics are a great way to provide prospects with helpful information while motivating them to contact you. Most importantly, infographics establish your company as a thought leader and unconsciously identify you with industry authority.
According to recent surveys,
Nearly 41% of respondents indicated that infographics and illustrations are the most effective solutions for achieving their business objectives.
On social media, infographics receive three times the number of shares as other types of content.
Articles that included infographics received 72% more views than standard articles.
A great infographic has a great design. If your organization lacks an in-house graphics team, you can simply locate a freelance designer to create a stunning infographic for you.
Your infographics are ageless pieces of material that can be reused for smart marketing and lead generation manufacturing.
Here's an example of an infographic from Digital Marketing Philippines from 2019 that received over 1,600 shares and is jam-packed with data and text. In this way, you can see how the company may have gotten its leads from these 1600 shares, each of which is a potential customer.
Host an Event
According to Bizzabo,
86% of senior management (Senior Managers, Executives, and Board Members) believe that in-person events are critical to the success of their company.
The majority of B2B marketers (97%) believe in-person events have a significant impact on achieving business goals.
According to Marketing Charts,
68% of B2B marketers agree that in-person events aid in lead generation for manufacturers, while case studies help with lead conversion and acceleration.
Improve manufacturing lead generation through events that can occur both online and offline. Organize any kind of event to attract your target market while collecting contact information. Use live events to interact with consumers in real-time, answering questions, addressing objections, learning about your audience, and guiding prospects through the sales funnel. Consider webinars, workshops, seminars, meetups, and conferences.
Create a Value-Packed Newsletter
"Content is the fuel for your lead generation efforts."
– Dayna Rothman
According to the Content Marketing Institute,
31% of B2B marketers believe email newsletters are the most effective way to nurture leads.
81% of B2B marketers report that email newsletters are their most frequently used form of content marketing.
Create a must-read newsletter that invites interested prospects to engage and remain connected with your company. This enables you to stay top-of-mind with consumers and promote your products and services to move prospects along the sales funnel.
The newsletter can have new blog entries, product or service updates, special deals, upcoming events, and recommended reading from other thought leaders.
Incorporate SEO into Your Marketing Plan
According to Intergrowth,
61% of B2B marketers say SEO and organic traffic generate more leads than any other type of marketing.
Search engine leads convert at a rate of 14.6%, while outbound leads (cold calling, direct mail, etc.) convert at a rate of 1.7%.
Manufacturers are no exception when it comes to the importance of search engine optimization (SEO). As a result, you may generate many leads with the correct marketing approach and a profound grasp of SEO for manufacturers.
When we consider the statistics explained earlier in this article, we can see the benefits of all of the techniques mentioned and how they can help you increase your lead generation and, as a result, your overall business ROI.
Thus, we can refer to the above-mentioned lead generation techniques as sales-driven strategies that will assist you at every lead generation and conversion stage. Improved lead generation for manufacturers enables businesses to reach a vast customer base and generate more high-quality leads.
What is a high-quality lead in manufacturing?
Leads of high quality have an increased propensity to convert into paying consumers. The more qualified your leads are, the more likely they will buy your product or service.
What are the lead generation challenges?
Making accurate data, shaping conversations, and converting qualified leads into sales are some of the significant challenges in manufacturing lead generation.