Steam, electricity and mass production: the three major upheavals that shaped modern industry. Today, a fourth wave is flooding our factories: Industry 4.0. Here, automation and data exchange come together in entirely new ways, shaping production systems that enable smart, data-driven and decentralized decision-making and further minimizing human interaction with processes. As countless examples already show, the opportunities to improve efficiency, lower costs and even provide new services are enormous. But what can it mean for your business?
How we got to now
While individual ‘smart machines’ driven by PLCs have existed for many years, the emergence of cheap data storage, hardware, cloud technologies, interconnectivity and ever-increasing computing power has pushed manufacturing process digitization to new heights. The result is the ‘smart factory’, where physical systems and software solutions communicate with operators and each other and make data-driven decisions – sometimes without any human intervention at all.
Turning data into value
In other words, the essence of Industry 4.0 is the use of data-derived insights to make better decisions and thus create business value. The whole process, from sensors to value, looks like this:
While a lot of big companies are already familiar with the applications and advantages of Industry 4.0, SMEs are starting to discover the benefits as well. To meet the demand for personalized products and services and to be able to compete with big players, SMEs must also embrace the logic of data and insights to steer processes. But the best is yet to come for them: companies like SAP and Microsoft are pushing forward to make Industry 4.0 attainable for players of all industries and sizes. delaware is more than happy to guide you.
How we can help you
Why choose delaware?