Technologies such as IoT, analytics, and intelligence have dramatically transformed manufacturing, enhancing process efficiencies and unlocking substantial value. It’s on complex shop floors, such as those of automotive, consumer goods, and steel manufacturing that digitalization can truly support manufacturers in optimizing their operations and enhancing the level of automation in their production processes.
However, while many manufacturers recognize the benefits associated with Industry 4.0, few have been able to make the transition to date. Although they may know why they want to change, they don’t really know how and are worried about the return on investment (ROI).
Only 10% of companies in these key sectors have been able to master the cultural, strategic, and operational changes needed to support Industry 4.0.
What do these digital champions have in common? Smart, interconnected systems and visibility into operational performance.
So, what does that look like?
It starts with something as simple as asset tracking. By tracking assets within your factory, you can ensure full and real-time control over your entire facility. Anything that moves within your facility can be digitized, located, and tracked so you always know its exact location and where it is in the production process.
This includes, as an example, job orders, forklifts, raw materials, semi-finished goods, and pallets. Workers too, equipped with different types of TAGs (e.g., badges, bracelets), can be located for safety and theft-prevention reasons.
Real-time digital twin
The next step to optimizing your plant—from floor to back office and even loading docks and parking lots—is being able to see it all using a digital twin of your environment. More than just a dot on a screen, a digital twin provides you with research capabilities, notifications, and analysis of all the relevant data tied to your production process.
With complex production cycles, thousands of materials, goods, semi-finished goods, and parts moving within your facility, and workers crisscrossing your environment, assets might be forgotten, lost, or stolen. In almost every, instance this can end up costing you valuable time, money, and resources.
When you put asset tracking together with a digital twin of your environment, you can:
- Mitigate heavy delays in production, and could even increase your lead times
- Reduce labor hours wasted in manually searching for assets, materials, and goods
- Streamline workflows, giving employees the ability to prioritize important tasks
- Enhance planning and scheduling of processes and people
Using the easy-to-read dashboard, accessed on any mobile device, your team can easily find assets and raw materials, know their production status, and prioritize the jobs in line with planning and orders’ scheduling. Moreover, real-time notifications can be enabled letting you know if materials enter wrong production phases or areas so you can avoid errors and improve lead times.
i-Virtualize’s TRACE Sensors gives your workers and plant managers a digital twin of your factor at their fingertips, empowering them to have full visibility and real-time control over workflows, processes, and all your inventory. See for yourself what TRACE Sensors can do for your business by taking our 60-second RTLS assessment. Tell us about your facility, and we’ll tell you how we can make it better.