Last week at a conference, a couple of my colleagues and I had the opportunity sit and debate the changing world order that will make the “factory of the future”. The three of us are involved in the major opportunities we see in the market and it provides us the real opportunity to engage with companies with transformation plans, and engage with thought leaders. We decided to approach the discussion of the future factory by approaching it from different industries, as well as markets.
Sure enough we ended up aligned on the core to the “factory of the future” will around what two companies labeled “New World of work”. I have mentioned this many times in this blog around “smart operational work”.
We were able group companies who looked at the future thru "new technologies" and how they could apply them, (I seem to visited a number of this type in the last month) vs those companies that we believe will be the leaders with the successful approach of “how they must operation, work” in the new world.
We defined the new world means the next 5 to 10 years with characteristics of:
- Brand loyalty at customer reducing, so “Brand Promise” is key
- Agility to satisfy is key
- Shrinking mid tier market as the larger companies continue to consolidate to address the supply of new products and service markets. (especially in consumer products).
- Dynamic workforce where workers rotate locations/ roles, experience in a role will be less than 2 years.
- Supply chains with limited inventory requires transparent/ agile manufacturing across the sites.
- “Constant Change” in assets, process, people, products is the natural state in the 2020.
The diagram below is an interesting on Agility:
The Sense of time shortening causing the decisions, lifetimes of products and lines and roles getting for ever shorter. The ability to rapidly introduce, change in not just product but also delivery, and supply is key in order to satisfy.
The fact that each of us engaging different industries such as oil and gas / process, to consumer manufacturing saw the core catalyst the leading companies have identified as the transformation in the way their company must react, capture and execute work. Shifting from isolated plants, and people to teams of plants and people that work as an aligned operational team to achieve a goal.
The “New world of Work” is fundamental built on :
- New ways of working with dynamic workers that share, collaborate and are connected but assume experience from the system, they trust the system
- New Processes around agility, new product introduction that leverage the skills and approach of the “digital Native” collaborative worker, combined with new technologies to enable new processes and operational awareness. The ability to see situations early, continue to learn, and act fast to changing conditions is key.
- New technologies provide the opportunity to deliver these new ways of working, with new processes. The likes of leveraging the data, through “big data” to use the past to determine the future in a natural manner. The industrial internet of things (industry 4.0) will enable smart devices providing new levels of embedded autonomy in machines and processes, shifting workers to “exception based” management, but with greater responsibility.
The diagram below shows this shift, which will require different tools and approaches.
So as you look at your plans, are you stepping back and looking at the way you will work, then understanding the profile of operational team, how they will developing the processes to satisfy this work and required agility, and then looking at what technology you can leverage to accelerate the success in a sustainable and evolutionary way. This last comment is key as the natural state of the new world is one of “change” and the systems and culture must be able “master” naturally.