Do you really know all the possibilities of Smart Factory in 2017?
Recently, Sylvie Rioux, my associate, and I went to meet with a client to discuss intelligent plant and connected machines. It was a customer open to new technologies and aware of the importance of innovation in industry.
We began by presenting our vision of mill 4.0 and paperless. The customer has gratified us with an interested listening. Then came the question and comment period.
That’s when he told us he had a smart plant for a long time and we were too late.
Whew! What a shock! We thought we were pioneers in Quebec.
Once the blow was taken, we decided to go fishing to find out a little more, from the client’s mouth. He then explained to us what his intelligent factory system consists of. We expected something extraordinary, something super innovative!
Well, no! The technology that is the cornerstone of this customer’s Factory 4.0, which is very sympathetic by the way, is a system that simply counts the units produced by its manufacturing chain and then derives productivity indices from it. The biggest innovation of this system, as I understand it, is that it is compatible with mobile devices… I hope! Is it 2017?
It is perfectly understandable that companies that offer technologies that were innovative 10 or 15 years ago have decided to use the “Smart Factory 4.0” label to revamp their innovative image. We have to keep selling! However, this becomes more problematic when, in the collective imagination, these technologies are the spearhead of an industrial revolution that will enable Quebec manufacturers to remain competitive on the world stage.
It was at this point that I realized the importance of providing Quebec manufacturers with the right information on the real possibilities of the Smart Factory. It’s good to know the productivity rate of a plant, but it’s even better to have systems that tell us what causes productivity declines. Systems capable of predicting future events, even.
Let’s understand each other! I am not saying that it is futile to have a production efficiency calculation system. I’m just saying that we shouldn’t think we’ve reached the pinnacle of Intelligent Plant 4.0 just because we have tablets in our plant that display the rates of return.
Smart Factory is so much more than that!
I invite you to visit our blog regularly. In the coming weeks, you will be able to read concrete examples of all the possibilities of Smart Factory 4.0. On the menu: artificial intelligence, predictive maintenance, augmented reality…
If you haven’t already done so, I invite you to register for one or both of these luncheon conferences (or both) to learn more about the real possibilities of the Smart Factory in 2017:
October 11th at 7:30am, IQ Innovative Manufacturer Tour at DigiHub
October 12th at 7:30am, Andromedia Technologies Conference at the manufacturing lunches.
Download our ebook on Smart Factory here!
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