• Gustav Coetzee

Industry 4.0: IoT key to building agile factories of the future.

The global marketplace is rapidly changing, and the ability to adapt is a defining factor in determining which manufacturers will survive and which will succeed. As rising costs, supply chain issues, skills gaps, and the evolution of Industry 4.0, manufacturers must look to intelligent cloud and intelligent edge solutions to build smart, agile factories.

According to a new manufacturing survey, industrial IoT adoption and interest has increased significantly in the last two years. Roughly 41% of manufacturing executives polled said their businesses were already "mostly digital", while a further 84% confirmed they are currently implementing and/or developing digital manufacturing strategies.

Below are some pivotal ways that IoT can help manufacturers drive agility, increase uptime, optimize overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), and improve product quality and efficiency.

Drive operational equipment efficiency (OEE)

For most manufacturers, improving OEE is a top priority. Manufacturers are seeking new ways to collect and use real-time data in order to drive continuous improvement, better business decisions, and cost reductions. To identify efficiencies and improve plant performance they want to utilize intelligent planning, predictive maintenance, and production flow visibility throughout the manufacturing plant.

Developed by Core Focus partner Aligné, Aligné Supply Chain provides the building blocks to simplify and accelerate custom solutions for industrial use cases. The solution helps users to monitor and troubleshoot machine connectivity and provides visibility into asset status and health, all in real-time, leading to increased asset efficiency and uptime.

Improve product quality and production efficiency

Another priority that can be achieved through IoT is to improve product quality and production performance. IoT helps minimize turnaround times and bring goods into consumers' hands quicker by capturing and applying actionable intelligence data. IoT informs fast design changes to enhance product quality and yield using cognitive services and artificial intelligence (AI). IoT also aids producers in reducing operational costs by improving productivity and energy usage, as well as reducing scrap and rework costs.

IoT can also improve supply chain resilience and profitability by improving supply chain design and implementation. IoT helps to build autonomous supply chains that bring goods to market faster by using sensors, networks, and intelligent systems.

Increase uptime and availability

Another important goal is to keep production lines running smoothly. Manufacturers can use the IoT to gain real-time insights that can help them prevent system failures, improve worker safety, and boost production. IoT helps manufacturers track asset health and predict, diagnose, and solve issues before they impact production when combined with machine learning. IoT may also enable in streamlining system management in order to increase efficiency. IoT may also be used to empower technicians with knowledge and resources to boost productivity & quality when combined with Governance, Compliance & Quality Management Systems.


Predictive insights are provided by solutions like Aligné Supply Chain, which allow manufacturers to predict and resolve equipment maintenance and replacement needs in order to avoid costly failures and keep production running at full capacity.

Smart manufacturing with IoT improves outcomes and is a key differentiator in attaining a more resilient and sustainable future. To learn more about how Core Focus and our Supply Chain Management & Digital Transformation services and solutions that can help you accelerate your journey to Industry 4.0, I encourage you to contact us here.

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