The future of manufacturing revolves around a connected factory where all devices and elements are able to communicate, facilitating enhanced visibility into each process. The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) makes this vision possible through sensors and devices interconnected with machine software and applications.
The implementation of data analytics is a vital element of the connected factory. Within smart manufacturing, technology enables machines, people and sensors to share information seamlessly and automatically across the shop floor. Connected equipment produces vast amounts of data, and with edge connectivity and computing, this data can be analyzed and understood in transformative ways.
Real-time information allows for enhanced decision-making and process improvements, as well as full insight into troubleshooting assessments and predictive maintenance.
In this article, we take a deeper look at the benefits of data analytics for manufacturing and its impact on the industry as a whole.
What is manufacturing analytics?
An essential aspect of Industry 4.0, manufacturing analytics refers to the use of operational, systems and machine data to improve the functions of a manufacturing company. This data can enhance productivity and performance, ensure product quality, optimize decision-making and lower costs.
Real-time, connected data collection is changing the manufacturing industry, reducing human error and allowing for faster decision-making and process changes. In today’s globalized, competitive marketplace, the ability to leverage technology solutions can mean the difference between success and irrelevancy. With greater visibility into key metrics, companies can more easily stay aligned with their business goals.
What manufacturing analytics can do for you
When we create a constant stream of collected and shared data, we enable greater agility, efficiency and flexibility.
Predictive maintenance and heightened productivity
In modern manufacturing, people and machines operate side by side — and business success requires each machine and process to work according to plan. One error can throw off your entire production, negatively impacting your bottom line. With the right analytics tools, you’ll receive constant notifications and remote monitoring to ensure uninterrupted performance.
With predictive maintenance, IoT-enabled sensors and edge technology will tell your team if there’s an issue before it impacts productivity, helping your workers transition from finders to fixers. Reporting dashboards — informed by real-time analytics — allow you to review asset and process status in one centralized location. With the right tools, you’ll enhance your production systems and achieve maximum productivity.
Consumer expectations have evolved in recent years, and demand is higher than ever before. It’s essential that manufacturing companies can produce high-profit yields and optimize supply chain management. Data analytics make it possible.
With immediate insights, you can forecast customer demand and future trends based on market changes, seasonality and more. Intelligent tools will sift through data, analyze key results and figures, and provide invaluable reporting to improve your services and output. You’ll have a deeper understanding of how long each job takes, how much it costs and the materials needed, allowing for better estimates and planning.
The customer service benefits are just as essential. When you better know your consumer, you can respond to their changing needs, enhance relationships and strategically adjust processes to meet heightened expectations.
With advanced analytics tools, you can easily identify opportunities to lower costs. Swarm intelligence (a common form of the IoT) is the result of various, unconnected devices sharing data. It’s typically integrated into factories to help with production scheduling, reduce bottlenecks and boost efficiencies. Your factory can leverage this technology to cut costs through predictive maintenance, improved safety and efficiency — and uncover net-new revenue from value-added services.
Data can also uncover areas primed for automation. Implementing automation can reduce waste and improve productivity, leading in turn to cost savings and higher satisfaction rates. Ultimately, real-time insights provide complete visibility into your factory processes, revealing crucial cost-saving areas you may be unaware of.
Future-proof your factory.
The right data tools can transform your manufacturing company. At Insight, we’ll help you upgrade existing processes, scale operations, improve customer interactions and more. Becoming a factory of the future is a major undertaking, but our technical expertise and deep industry knowledge will guide you each step of the way.
Together, we’ll bring innovation to your factory floor and optimize your business outcomes.