What Is Digital Transformation in Manufacturing?

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With the stiff competition among giant manufacturers, business owners have had to up their game to remain competitive. Among the many changes that manufacturers have had to embrace is digital transformation. Companies are digitizing most of their processes in a bid to be more productive and remain afloat in a rather competitive business environment. But, what exactly is digital transformation in the manufacturing industry? Again, how does digital transformation benefit manufacturing companies?

Here, we provide answers to these questions and also let you know the benefits and importance of digital transformation. Additionally, you get to know the top digital transformation trends in manufacturing that you can implement in your industrial manufacturing plant. With such information, you can make informed decisions on how to make your manufacturing company more competitive and curve your niche in the world of manufacturing.

What is digital transformation in manufacturing?

Digital transformation is the integration of digital processes in the manufacturing industry to boost productivity and enhance business growth. With digital transformation, manufacturers can increase efficiency while also reducing the cost of operation. When properly implemented, digital transformation in industrial manufacturing can improve the quality of products, and this makes your company remain competitive.

To yield the best results, you may want to consider getting managed IT support from a company you can trust. You can contract an IT company to help you manage all your IT services on your behalf, while also checking on your company's security. This not only lets you concentrate on other important business operations but will also ensure that you get the best and latest IT services in the market.

For digital transformation to be more effective and yield more positive outcomes, manufacturers may have to embrace adaptive Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP). The application of Enterprise Resource Planning alongside the implementation of new technologies such as the IoT in business, makes the manufacturing processes more effective. Similarly, ERP serves to automate most operations in an attempt to reduce human intervention as much as possible. As a result, human errors are eliminated and this improves the quality of products, making you attract customer loyalty within your target market.

Importance of Digitalization in the Manufacturing Industry

The pace at which manufacturing industries are embracing digitalization in their business processes is astounding. According to the International Data Corporation, 75% of manufacturers will have embraced digital strategies by 2025 in an attempt to improve production levels and also expand their market shares. While this will boost productivity and reduce human errors, it will also enhance the relationship between employers and employees, as manufacturers strive to digitize their employee experiences. Hence, the importance of digital transformation cannot be overlooked. With digital transformation, manufacturers can identify business trends and consequently work towards improving their product development strategies.

Not only will manufacturers improve their inventory levels and demand cycles, but they will also improve on their overall management skills and decision-making processes. As a manager, you can track down important business operations for the efficient running of various operations.

Additionally, you can rely on digital transformation to make important decisions regarding the future of your company. This is facilitated by the digital tools including cloud computing and IoT in managing their operations and improving on the overall efficiency of the shop floors. With digital transformation, manufacturers will not only drive their sales but will also enhance their relationship with other stakeholders, within the supply chain.

As such, business continuity is safeguarded even when crisis arise. A digitized platform ensures that business operations will not be heavily affected by unforeseen incidences that may halt production and other processes within the supply chain. Therefore, with digital transformation, manufacturers can enhance their planning strategies and communication levels as they rely on real-time data to make important business decisions.

Benefits of Digital Transformation in Manufacturing

Digital transformation affects about every aspect of your company. This includes the company's culture, which alters the ways most operations are handled. As a result, customer experiences are also improved as companies strive to offer the best to enable them to remain competitive.

When companies embrace digital transformation, they stand to reap massive benefits that not only improve productivity but also make the management of business processes easy and more effective. Some of the benefits you stand to gain include:

Automation of Business Processes

With digital transformation, companies automate manufacturing and other business processes through the Internet of Things, making it easier to manage and control most operations. Both data entry and reporting are also automated and this makes it easier to track various business operations. As such, you can easily adapt to change as you strive to remain afloat in the competitive manufacturing world.

Enhanced Decision-Making

You can thus make informed decisions based on available data and improve production as deemed appropriate.

Improved Data Visibility

Digital transformation in industrial manufacturing plays an integral role in enhancing data visibility in real-time. This enables managers to realize when it is appropriate to make changes to make operations more efficient and effective.

Improved Customer Satisfaction

As companies strive to be more customer-centric, they become more innovative. With digital transformation, you can change the way you relate with your customers and serve them better. As reported by Gartner, customer experience forms the basis for the new battlefront in marketing. Digital transformation makes this possible by incorporating current trends in communication and the supply chain.

Digital Transformation Examples in Manufacturing

There are various digital transformation examples in manufacturing that you can borrow from. Some of the most common digital transformation examples in manufacturing include:

  • Temperature and humidity regulation
  • Operating machines in real-time. This allows industries to implement both predictive and preventive maintenance
  • Spraying vehicles
  • Managing logistics

In a case scenario, the General Electrics manufacturing Plant in New York specializes in making batteries for power plants and cell phone towers. GE has implemented the IoT in its manufacturing plant where approximately 10,000 sensors are spread throughout the manufacturing plant to control various operations. As a result, the company can monitor aspects such as humidity and temperature and regulate them as required. This digitization in the manufacturing industry not only improves efficiency in production but also ensures that the cost of operation is reduced.

Top Digital Transformation Trends in Manufacturing

Some of the top Digital transformation trends in manufacturing include:

  • IoT
  • Big Data Analytics
  • Machine learning and artificial intelligence
  • Smart manufacturing
  • Augmented reality
  • 3D printing
  • Industrial Robots
  • Cloud computing

With digital transformation gaining traction, manufacturers have a better chance of becoming more productive and effective in their processes. All these digital transformation trends are aimed at helping manufacturers become more efficient and also cut production costs, while also improving customer experience.

Need more insight on digital transformation in manufacturing? Techendo can help

For more information on digital transformation in manufacturing, Techendo is your perfect partner. Contact us today and talk to our tech experts as you plan to take your business to the next level.

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