According to an Information Services Group report, some manufacturers were fast to react to the onset of the pandemic with one-off cost-cutting initiatives.
ISG EMEA lead, Smart Manufacturing Christian Decker said: “A more sustainable approach is to include digital initiatives as a portfolio of investments, and let the cost optimisation self-fund innovation, with limited additional cash outlay required. This approach will spur the continued evolution of digital technologies to sustain competitive operations.”
He said that smart manufacturing spans the value chain including smart products, production and services, from the shop floor to enterprise resource planning solutions and the cloud.
“Smart factories leverage new technologies and exploit captured data from products, machines and processes to increase efficiency.”
Decker said: “IoT devices have helped organisations preserve revenue streams during this pandemic. As a result, enterprises in a post-COVID world will likely demand more smart manufacturing products and solutions. For example, collaborative robots and IT systems that help reduce on-site plant-floor employees address human resources deficits during social distancing requirements. The future is here, but only the savviest businesses will bring it to its full potential.”