The six manufacturing pillars of a digital ecosystem
Most manufacturers recognize that a digital transition is required to remain competitive and drive growth and innovation. A recent survey by the Manufacturing Leadership Council indicates that 91% of manufacturers expect to increase their spending on digital tools. And in fact, 29% of manufacturers anticipate that their spending will “increase significantly” in building out a digital ecosystem in the next few years.
To get a better understanding of exactly what makes up a manufacturing digital ecosystem, we’ve grouped its key properties into the six pillars below. These pillars represent the core functionality of our digital solutions, which offer complete visibility and seamless access to critical data—providing a central view into related use cases, tools, KPIs, and workflows. Not all six pillars may be necessities for your organization now, but because your needs will likely change over time, the pillars are flexible and can branch out as needed or condense if no longer relevant.
Here are the six most common pillars for manufacturers:
Offer personalized or highly configured products with speed and value. Deliver the rich, purchasing experience that customers expect, while integrating sales with operations and production for order accuracy and quality control.
Smart supply chain
Collaborate with partners and supplies across the supply chain for greater visibility. Implement corrective actions based on data-based decisions that deliver ideal final outcomes. Gain real-time views of the end-to-end supply chain and have the agility to quickly reroute shipments to maintain inventory levels.
Command operations, shop floor processes, and scheduling with total visibility. Analyze “what if” scenarios to plan the best use of resources, including labor. Bridge gaps between operations and the back office, creating a clear picture of costs and profitability.
Ensure products reach customers when and where they need them. Confidently manage third-party logistics providers, after-market service contracts, warranties, and depot repair.
Environmental and social governance
Adopt carbon accounting techniques and achieve net-zero emission targets that meet customer expectations and increasingly stringent regulations. Extend the life of materials and assets, improve waste reduction efforts, and reduce energy usage by adopting a circular manufacturing sustainability model.
Improve visibility into labor and resources to help recruit, retain, and engage employees. Strategically put right-skilled workers in the right place and empower every employee to be as productive as possible.