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With budgets squeezed from every angle and pressure to achieve ever-greater efficiencies, how can manufacturers get a clear picture of productivity gaps across their factories that enable digital adoption? ?

As manufacturing faces the triple pressure of rising energy costs, supply chain challenges, and a widening skills gap across the sector, efficiency gains, both large and small, are critical.

This sector is no stranger to evolution. From the first mobile assembly lines to the advent of Industry 4.0, the manufacturing floor has become a more complex world where manufacturers rely on equipment, teams, systems, and processes had to be adapted.

Addressing current manufacturing challenges

Staying competitive in the face of extreme challenges is no small feat.

In recent years, the sector has faced major recruitment challenges as young people pursue careers in other industries. Many are turning their backs on what are considered “traditional” industries and pursuing careers in technology, recognizing the role technology plays in creating world-class manufacturing facilities. Is not …

The industry certainly has work to do to show the tech-hungry talent pool the opportunities that a career in manufacturing presents, and at the micro level, adopt Industry 4.0 and communicate it to the outside world. Individual manufacturing industries that are in business have a much better chance. Attract the talent they need.

The double whammy of COVID-19 and Brexit has created significant supply chain problems for many manufacturers. Some products have become almost unobtainable, with significant price increases and longer delivery times. All of these have a direct impact on your bottom line. line.

In addition to this, most manufacturers are feeling the pinch due to the unprecedented rise in energy prices facing the sector. This perfect storm means that efficiency and overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) are more firmly in the spotlight.

Industry 4.0 Thousand Years Old

The advent of Industry 4.0 promised incredible benefits. The truth is that these lofty promises have not been realized for many manufacturers for several reasons. First, there are many differing views on what Industry 4.0 is. Second, the digital revolution is as complex as the industrial revolution that preceded it. And third, digitization comes at a price.

FourJaw says one of the first steps in this journey is to examine the resources (both equipment and people) that companies already have at their disposal and ask themselves whether those resources are being used in the most efficient way. I believe it is.

As information is collected and analyzed more holistically and shared more widely, we often see systems operating in silos on the factory floor. Where information is collected, it is often done in a time and resource consuming manner. While many manufacturers rely on people to gather information, the reality is that data can be collected using cost-effective technology, allowing the team’s skills to be used in other areas much more effectively and efficiently. can be expanded.

By spending less time on low-skilled tasks, resources are freed up so that the right people can do the best work for their skill sets. It also allows administrators to be more proactive. Collecting the right data in the most cost-effective way is critical. Without it, gaps and inefficiencies are not always apparent. Using accurate real-time data as a starting point, managers can quickly identify these gaps and implement processes that drive production efficiency and immense cost savings.

Collecting relevant shop floor data

Most of the manufacturing industries we talk about estimate machine utilization at 50% to 60%. However, after implementing “plug and play” manufacturing analytics software, data shows that real-world utilization averages between 20% and 30%.

For many companies, the first instinct is to invest in new equipment to increase efficiency. In many cases, with the right information in hand, simply leveraging the capabilities of existing machines can significantly improve overall equipment effectiveness (OEE) without investing in new kits.

Many manufacturers are unaware that this type of “plug and play” monitoring exists or how quick, easy, and cost-effective it can be to implement it throughout their manufacturing facility, thus reducing this potential. remains unexplored. Allows you to address overall site productivity instead of focusing on one specific pain point.

A clear understanding of your production landscape helps you use all your resources (machinery, staff skills, energy and time) efficiently and cost-effectively. Industry 4.0 is complex, but machine monitoring is not. Understanding your site’s performance is a critical first step in achieving all-important efficiency gains.

To learn more about what Industry 4.0 is and what it means for your business, download and read FourJaw’s free “No Bull Industry 4.0” guide.

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