Manufacturing Trends For 2018
2018 is going to be a big year for customers, suppliers and partners. The reason for this is because of the great agility, speed and scale they work with nowadays. The 5 trends beneath will accelerate for sure into every part of the production operations. According to a recent survey by the IQMS 92% of the manufacturers say product quality is the key to success in the eyes of their customers. 56% of the manufacturers find their customers most frequently demand short notice production capabilities as a value-added service. 50% find their success through ability to meet on-time deliveries consistently.
Studies have found that to handle the challenges from every day. You must be like Amazon or Facebook. Accurate, fast, real-time feedback 24/7 on any device, anytime delivered over a state-of-the-art interface is the new normal. Expect manufacturing trends for 2018 to focus on meeting and exceeding those challenges with the best product quality possible to drive the most efficient path to higher growth.
1. 2018 is going to be an essential year in manufacturing software usability.
In the next 12 months, every manufacturing software provider will make significant improvements in their user interface designs to retain existing clients and attracting new ones. The software providers who choose to make this priority will win more deals than competitors and have a quicker onramp to delivering new features than competitors. For manufacturers the year is coming you’ve been waiting for; the trend for manufacturing apps is to become more usable, flexible and configurable to your needs.
2. Despite the fear that robots will take over jobs, boring jobs will be given to robots, manual tasks freeing up engineering and production teams’ time for more cognitive, valuable tasks.
The reality of robotics is that the most repetitive, manually-intensive jobs scale from an automation perspective. These jobs are known for their boring nature. Giving them to robotics systems will make room free for valuable thinking and allows employees to make greater contributions than manual labor allows.
3. Growing technologies like collaborative robots, 3D printing, virtual reality and voice-activation assistants will be piloted next year with broad adoption by 2021.
The collection of these technologies is riding a wave of hype today, with business cases being defined and piloted. Piloting will continue with broad adoption of these technologies driven by business cases in three years. This notion may thrill or horrify you, but the business model—on-demand printing of customized products—has significant advantages over traditional retailing models. If you can quickly and cheaply replace a broken cabinet handle by printing it at home (or scanning what you want and e-mailing those specs to a print shop), you don’t have to travel to a store and stores don’t need to keep a lot of supply on the hand.
Shoe designs could be encoded as digital templates that could be manipulated and printed to perfectly fit any customers feet. Inventories would shrink, along with transportation, handling and storage costs. (Retail shops might even disappear if orders can be fulfilled directly by manufacturers who deliver to their customers’ homes.) And if supply lines are less dependent upon manufacturing centers abroad, they’re also less vulnerable to interrupt. In conventional manufacturing, every increase in design complexity costs money and time. With additive manufacturing, it’s as easy to print a simple tube as it is to print, say, a double helix wrapped in a spiral staircase draped by a spider web. High-resolution printers can even make products with gears and hinges.
4. Internet of Things (IoT) hype on having a sensor on almost everything on a shop floor will give away to unique use cases where millions of dollars of savings are attained, and higher accuracy levels are achieved.
The greatest IoT wins will be in distribution-centric and distribution manufacturing-based businesses that rely on quick moving inventories and tightly synchronized product introductions. These strategies will show the value of IoT from a purely performance-based standpoint. Time-to-market and supply chain risk mitigation will be the pragmatic uses cases dominating this area in 2018.
5. Manufacturing intelligence will emerge as the system of record, providing a wealth of data, to drive more efficient production operations.
Capturing data to the machine level and having that to reside in a company-wide system of record will revolutionize the level of insights possible for troubleshooting production bottlenecks and quality problems. From the shop floor to the floor, new insights gained using manufacturing intelligence will also change how OEE is perceived as a metric. Greater insights into just how a manufacturing site is performing and what steps can be taken to optimize its workflows will be known for the first time.