29 August

IIoT: How to Fix Failures

Industry 4.0 is about more than just networking, it’s about getting better process outcomes.

If you live and breathe the manufacturing industry, you have spent the last couple of years bombarded by use cases and sales pitches for Industrial IOT products claiming to support your Industry 4.0 revolution, perhaps with AI and other whizbang technologies. With all of the marketing materials being produced with these buzzwords, it’s easy to think that Industry 4.0 has arrived and is within reach.

“What is Industry 4.0? The concept originated in Germany, and describes how initially steam power, and later electric power and mass production assembly techniques enabled the first industrial revolution (from Industry 1.0 to Industry 2.0). Industry 3.0 will incorporate robotics and computers, paving the way for Industry 4.0, which will network everything into a self-learning, self-correcting, system.”

The data disagrees. In mid-2017, Cisco produced a report of survey results indicating that companies considered 76% of their IOT initiatives failures, and a majority said that IOT initiatives looked good on paper, but turned out to be more complex than expected. In early July, Gartner published its first ever 2018 Magic Quadrant for Industrial IOT, which included companies that provide IOT platforms that work in multiple verticals, such as transportation, manufacturing, utilities, and natural resources. The punchline is that no company crossed Gartner’s bar for execution – indicating an opinion that the products listed weren’t living up to expectations.

As the CEO of a company in this space, I spend a lot of time working with operations and manufacturing leaders across many types of organizations in the manufacturing vertical. These teams exist in various stages of disillusion about Industry 4.0 initiatives, spanning from still seeking the magic technology that will make their biggest headaches go away to shunning anything with a dashboard.

The gap between reality and the marketing is in sequencing: first we must build a solid data foundation, second, we must identify and understand the key business metrics we want to drive, and only then can we actually start the transformation of the process through advanced technologies.

 

This article was originally sourced from Forbes

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