Understanding the building blocks of a smart factory
To improve operations and strengthen their bottom line, manufacturing firms are adopting digital technologies to make their shop floors smarter. COVID-19 has only accelerated this transformation. Building a smart factory requires firms to consider their operating model, current maturity state and business process architecture. Below are the different operational characteristics required for a smart factory:
- Interconnected and autonomous operations
- Homogenous ecosystem of original equipment manufacturers, suppliers and partners
- Intelligence at the edge and cloud
- Adaptive manufacturing
- ‘Design and manufacture anywhere’ capabilities
These characteristics require flexible integration architecture built on an industrial internet of things platform, supported by a polyglot data fabric construct, an active intelligent services capability with self-service, model management and security features.
A think big-start small-scale rapidly approach can help firms implement a smart factory.