Find out more about Industry 4.0
There is a lot of talk about the concept and implementation of principles in line with Industry 4.0. Sometimes the terms Digitization or Future Industry are used interchangeably. Where to start, what tools to use, how to prepare your organization to go “dry leg” through the current of changes, and at the end how to measure whether we have succeeded. In this short article, I will try to answer at least some of the above questions.
We start by finding out where we are here and now. Perhaps without even knowing it (I trust that we do), we have already implemented assumptions, whether at the level of production or at the level of communication. ADMA is the ideal tool for our digital readiness. Methodology tested, objective and approved by the European Union Commission. Within the framework of the research itself, 7 areas are examined. Those are:
The result is a Research Report showing the current status, what steps need to be taken to start the transformation and where to seek help in this area.
With the above data, we can plan where and what tools to use to start the digitization process. We start from places that are furthest from the Industry 4.0 concept. At this stage, a group of experts (and we have such experts at SONIQ ANALYTICS), together with the client, decide in which areas we will start working on digital transformation. The choice of the starting point is important as it will affect other areas and activities within digitization.
An important element of the activity is the establishment of a team of Industry 4.0 Leaders. The purpose of establishing this body is to coordinate all activities related to the digitization of the enterprise. It should be a person or persons who, firstly, have basic knowledge about the company itself and, secondly, general knowledge about Industry 4.0. SONIQ ANALYTICS and our team of experts can help. Choosing an external company as people helping in digital transformation means full objectivity in consulting and high competence. The role of the Leader is a full-time job. Unfortunately, in most companies in the SME sector, this task is entrusted to people who also have other tasks in the company (production manager, maintenance manager, IT specialist). This creates a series of complications leading to discouragement and, consequently, the abandonment of the digital transformation project.
Preparing a company for digitization is a difficult and long-term task. The most important thing is education. Not only the “top”, that is the management staff, but most of all the “bottom” employees. It depends on them whether the process itself will be successful and how quickly it will be completed. They are the most important link in introducing changes. Information should flow from them whether what we are doing makes sense and is going in the right direction. That is why it is so important to communicate with the entire crew and work out ways to implement rationalization ideas.
After activities related to digital transformation in the previously selected areas, it is necessary to verify the indicators included in the forecasts. Therefore, it is necessary to undergo the digital readiness test again. Of course, the process should take place only after the implementation of all proposed tools (systems, machines, integration).
Comparing the data from before the start of digitization with those after implementation will allow to determine to what extent the changes were well planned and to what extent the forecasts proved correct. These activities will allow to verify and determine to what extent subsequent activities in the next areas of Industry 4.0 will be consistent with the forecasts.
To sum up, the most important thing in the process of achieving a company model in accordance with the principles of Industry 4.0 is education, both on the part of the Management Board and regular employees (the latter probably more). The next step is to find out where we are – the ADMA study. Appointment of Lidera / Liderów Przemysłu 4.0. Audit data analysis. Planning the steps of change, starting from the areas that are the most neglected or the most important for the company, and control of indicators in a given area and communication with people affected by these changes (listening to what they say).
It is also important to be aware that the entire process is lengthy and requires patience. The whole process will certainly consume a certain cost, but good planning of the subsequent stages of the change will allow you to control the entire process in such a way that introducing changes in a given area should bring either a reduction in costs or an increase in profits. Let the changes earn for the next changes.