Too often, manufacturing and Industry 4.0 are described only in terms of greenfield deployments. Unrealistic and expensive descriptions of shiny new factories outfitted with the latest industrial-internet-of-things (IIoT) technologies to deliver transformational insights are not the reality for most businesses.

For most, the truth is rather different, with manufacturers keen to realize the same value in their existing facilities with existing equipment and retrofitted sensors. Our study found that by combining IIoT/remote sensors, machine learning, and analytics as part of a comprehensive maintenance strategy, manufacturers can extend and enhance the life of their expensive assets for years to come.

Most manufacturers simply cannot afford to refresh all of their machines just because something new comes along. They need to work with the existing investments with the plan to add sensors to gain additional value from their machinery without the cost of replacing it.

Eighty-one percent of decision makers say extending the life of their equipment would save them money. The use of IIoT sensors is critical to meeting this goal, as these sensors provide data on the way in which machines are being used. The efficiency gained through proactive maintenance can help the near half (46%) of respondents’ firms in our study that retire their equipment prematurely.

Currently, more than a quarter of decision makers say their organizations are using a data-driven approach to machine maintenance through predictive maintenance practices. Eighty-

five percent of respondents agree that IIoT/remote sensors will be widely used in equipment service within five years. This shift to data-driven machine maintenance is critical to achieving better insights through data. Decision makers must ask themselves if their firms have the technology and staff in place to gather and act on the insights from their data.

Manufacturers are getting serious about the importance of becoming data-driven and are willing to dedicate the time and money to do it, with half of leaders in this study reporting an increase in maintenance-related programs/technology budgets in 2020. Seventy-seven percent of decision makers agree that using emerging technologies in combination with data insights maximizes the success of their digital initiatives, justifying the increase in funding. Even more compelling: 79% of respondents say using emerging technologies and data insights puts them ahead of the competition.

For more information, continue reading our informational infographic below!


Written by Jeff Kosiorek
Vice President and CMO for Advanced Technology Services, Inc.

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