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Human Values in Industry Digitalization

Future of Manufacturing to fuel economic growth

logo_2B1stSince 2010, some developed countries released Future of manufacturing programs in order to relocate at home industrial activities with the goal to fuel a sustainable growth and create jobs.

Each one of these countries branded its Future of manufacturing in its own way:

 – France – Usine du Futur or Industrie du Futur

GDP_nominal_per_capita_world_map_IMF_figures_for_year_2005 – Germany – Industrie 4.0

 – Japon – Abenomics

 – Netherlands – Smart Factory

 – South Korea – Creative Economy

 – UK – Future of Manufacturing

 – USA – Industry Renaissance

In reaction to developed countries some emerging nations have decided to launch their own program as well:

 – China – Smart Automation 2.0

 – India – Make in India (not to be confused with Made in India)

The fourth Industrial Revolution – Industrie 4.0

The common point between these Future of manufacturing programs is to integrate in various degrees the digital technologies to prepare ground for the fourth industrial revolution.

Just to remind, the first industrial revolution was born of the first textiles machines and the steam power.

The second industrial revolution resulted from the combination of the petroleum, electricity and first mass production lines on early 20th Century.

The third industrial revolution came out from the computarization of the machines on the years 1960s and continues still today with the robotisation and the automation.

On the technological side, the Future of manufacturing concepts introduce a new dimension with the digitalization.

Four_Industrial_Revolutions_ Industry 4.0Based on the Cyber Physical Systems (CPS), the digitalization adds a new dimension to the robotisation and automation as we know it, in connecting the systems together through networks or collaborative platforms.

In reference to the big data, the digitalization opens the way to the internet of the things (IoT), the collaborative innovation for a new industrial era, the Fourth Industrial Revolution also called Industry 4.0.

To clarify the difference between automation and digitalization, it just needs to compare the computer of your office, as powerful it can be, and the fact that this computer should be connected to internet to access networks.

This concept to connect industrial systems through collaborative platforms and internet networks, makes the difference between automation, as advanced it can be, and digitalization as basic it can be. It is a new dimension.

People pose with laptops in front of projection of Facebook logo in this picture illustration taken in ZenicaAutomation finds its place within a machine or a factory, while digitalization involves an entire industrial sector far before the manufacturing process itself and far after.

To simplify, the Future of manufacturing with its collaborative platform is nothing more than a « Facebook » for the industry with its « wall » by which the connected systems are able to interact together wherever they are from the first design phase to delivery to customer.

Human Values in Industry Digilatization

The second as the third industrial revolution have been easy going for everybody even though nobody is contesting their overall benefits for our society.

From this sometime painful history, the question of the human values in the digitalization industry such as proposed by the Future of manufacturing concepts finds its legitimacy.

To attempt answering this question, better to analyze some key facts.

First Human Value – Culture

In comparing the programs proposed by different countries to implement the Future of manufacturing concepts, we can see how much the culture is a major differentiator while digitalization technologies might be the same.

Korea-Creative-Economy_Germany-Industrie-4.0_USA-Industry-RenaissanceTake some examples:

 – Germany is planning to deploy the digitalization technologies in the most comprehensive way from one end to the other. Its Industrie 4.0 program, by reference to the Fourth Industrial Revolution, will be based on massive investments in educating and training people at all levels. Human being is the core of the plan.

 – South Korea and its Creative Economy is giving priority to creation, innovation in order to work differently. The start-up specialized in video games are for example, motivated to expand their network management and collaborative players behaviors expertise to the industry. Man must invent new social organization schemes. 

 – USA aim at building competitive advantage from their cheap energy to restore their domestic industry. With their Industry Renaissance program, they ambition to align two different worlds: the process industry and the manufacturing industry. The digitalization will be their common language to move forward together in the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

These three examples show how the culture of these countries guides their respective vision from a same Future of manufacturing concept and giving the man a different role.

Second Human Value – Customer is King

On the social networks, the queries are posted and answered without filters.

By each one of his request, the client is driving industry through a collaborative platform and is involving directly all the potential actors of the value chain to meet the requests.

The suppliers and sub-suppliers acquire the visibility of the end client request through the collaborative platforms.

In doing so, they can anticipate on market demand and make easy investment decisions.

From a supply driven market, the Future of manufacturing and its industry digitalization pave the way to a demand drive market where the client is the center of all industrial processes.   

Third Human Value – Suppliers become Key Players

When Toyota invented Kanban in the years 1950s, they established the link Customer – Supplier as the fundamental rule of the industrial interactions.

Customer-Supplier-Supply-Chain-KanbanThis invention facilitated the development of the out-sourcing with its endless supply chains as a consequence.

This business fragmentation along the supply chain contributed to reduce the costs but eliminated all free space for innovation.

According to various studies, about 40% of innovation projects cannot be developed by lack of corresponding partners while the financing is not an issue.

With the industry digitalization and its collaborative platforms, all the key players (design, manufacturers, suppliers, wholesalers, service providers) interact at the same level.

They are free to propose their solutions or to form alliances with partners depending on their own competence, own ambition, in order to meet posted market demands.

Each player can interact on the network instead of working in the supply chain line.

The suppliers become key players to influence the end client decision regardless their position in the supply chain.

Fourth Human Value – Services

In 2008 the subprimes crisis highlighted that industry intensive countries such as China, Germany, or South Korea, dumped the chock much better than services intensive countries.

Considering that one job created in industry is generating four jobs in services with a large scale of qualifications, the social impact of the industry on the economy becomes easy to evaluate.

Industry Digitalization offers Man Key Player Role

At the difference from automation, the digitalization changes the game of industry relationships from the conventional Customer – Supplier link to networking.

Future-of-Manufacturing_Digital-Engineering-Platform_Into_Oil&Gas-Petrochemical_IndustryThe unidirectional supply chain is replaced by collaborative platforms where all players interact together and can invent new solutions all the times to meet end client demands.

Innovation and costs reduction come along together in the industrial processes from design to delivery.

The industry and services can team up together to create value with the support of search institutions and universities.

The Governments may start to dream about sustainable growth creating jobs.

Within these organizations, each employee can extend his own network inside and outside to play a key role at any time.

Through the collaborative platforms they can find more opportunities for their company as well as for themselves.

The business relationships in network take over the hierarchical relationships.

Through the industry digitalization, each person can become a key player. 

For more information about Future of Manufacturing in Oil & Gas and Petrochemicals

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