The Smart Of Manufacturing

Amidst sluggish economic growth, increasing productivity and lowering manufacturing costs have become critical for manufacturers all over the world. Manufacturing companies are witnessing intense competition, and are looking to better optimize resources and reduce costs. Manufacturers are actively focusing on adopting newer strategies to overcome the challenges of growth.

In order to grow an enterprise (and through that, the economy), there must be an increase in production. This production can be a direct result of enterprises investing in more labour/ capital/ productivity. With the ability to invest heavily in the first two proving costly, productivity is increasingly becoming the primary lever for manufacturers worldwide to build a sustainable model that drives growth.

In the first industrial revolution, at the end of the 18th century, the first steam engine and hydro power loom revolutionised production. The late 19th century saw the revolution of electrical engineering and mass production. In the mid-1970s electronics and IT made sure that production became increasingly simplified with production assisted controls.

We believe that the world is at the verge of the fourth industrial revolution. A revolution that has Smart Manufacturing as the foundation.


So what is Smart Manufacturing anyway?

Smart manufacturing is a broad category of manufacturing with the goal of optimizing concept generation, production, and product transaction. While manufacturing can be defined as the multi-phase process of creating a product out of raw materials, smart manufacturing employs computer control and high levels of adaptability. It takes advantage of advanced information, proactive and autonomic analytics capabilities and manufacturing technologies to create an intelligent and self-healing environment that address a dynamic and global market.

Companies that have embraced smart manufacturing create an environment where all available information ─ from within the plant floor and from along the supply chain ─ is captured in real-time, made visible and turned into actionable insights.

This blurs the boundaries between departments and process like plant operations, supply chain, product design and demand management and also enables virtual tracking of capital assets, processes, resources and products. Smart manufacturing gives enterprises full visibility, which in turn supports streamlining business processes and optimizing supply and demand. You see? The productivity lever is being continuously put to work.


Early adopters who have at least partially implemented smart manufacturing initiatives have documented measurable results:

aerospace engineering design  82% reported increased efficiency
aerospace engineering design  49% reported fewer product defects
aerospace engineering design  45% reported customer satisfaction gains
If it seems so straightforward and there is the promise of growth, why aren't all manufacturing units and enterprises adapting the 'smarter way of manufacturing?' Well, there are costs. Broadly categorized into three holes in the bucket.

Capital costs: This one's a biggie. Enterprises are under a perception (rightly so) that putting the smart in their manufacturing is an expensive affair that requires huge infrastructure investments.

Human resources: Finding tech savvy talent that can collaborate with not just their human colleagues but also with their machines and work on outcomes.

Having an implementation plan: The area where majority of failures lie. Enterprises have tried to introduce smarter ways of working in short bursts without a clear agenda for the long run. This results in HQ brushing these 'initiatives' under the 'don't invest' carpet for the next 5 years.

With these costs turning sportive smart manufactures away, there are many flag bearers that are still keeping the dream of a smarter tomorrow alive. The 'factory of the future' is no longer a buzzword, several experts in the field of Digital engineering and smart manufacturing are offering services that help enterprises address these costs and move towards an optimized manufacturing model that is not just collaborative but is increasingly agile, automated and innovative.

With the global smart manufacturing market size expected to grow to $300 billion in 2023, there is a growing demand for expertise backed by the know-how. The biggest piece of the pie is bound to be had by the manufacturers that are replacing the 'art of manufacturing' with the 'smart of manufacturing.'



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