Data is at the heart of manufacturing. Manufacturers have always used data, from the data contained in designs and drawings translated into job sheets and processes, to the monitoring of production efficiency through time and motion studies.  

However, with the introduction of digital technologies, the use and collection of data has taken on new importance. Data from inside and outside the factory now has real value.  

“Big Data” or “Data Science” can help manufacturers to understand their customers, their tastes and preferences, in order to better fulfil their demands and satisfy their needs. Data is also needed to attract customers and assess the risks from the competition when introducing a new product to market or improving existing ones. Data management tools are  used to take proper insights whilst modelling, planning and decision-making. Data Science is  used to take customer feedback and idea generation.  

More and more manufacturers are applying data and analytics across their processes to optimize their supply chains, improve product scheduling and sales forecasting, reduce costs, develop new propositions and monitor machine usage and reliability.  

In some processing environments, like pharmaceuticals for instance, extreme changes in variability are a fact of life, due to the sheer number and complexity of production activities that influence the yield in these  industries. Advanced data analytics provides manufacturers with a granular approach to diagnosing and correcting process flaws.  

To remain competitive today, manufacturers should look to use smart data to bring the following benefits to their businesses:  

  • Demand forecasting and inventory management – Make an impact with your supplier-manufacturer relations to regulate stocks and the whole supply process.  
  • Predictive analysis – Analyze the present day data to forecast and avoid future problems.  
  • Fault predictions and preventative maintenance – Forecast the failure of your equipment to prevent downtime. 
  • Price optimization – Be sure of your pricing and cost data from internal and external sources to achieve a competitive edge and derive optimized price variants.  
  • Manage your supply chain – Analyze potential risks or delays and calculate the probabilities of problematic issues.  
  • Automation and robotization – Now more popular and affordable than ever before and not to be unsure of, Data Science helps to program and help the smooth functioning of robots to increase quality of products being manufactured.  

HSO works with many well-known enterprise manufacturers to help their data projects come to life. Powered by Microsoft Azure and Dynamics 365, you can optimize your supply chain with real-time visibility into your relationships with customers, partners, and suppliers, improving ROI and reducing time to market.

Learn how we can help you unify data and operations across your company’s value chain – from your factory floor to your customer’s door. 

Contributor:

Director of Manufacturing and Field Service Marketing, HSO

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