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How Will Smart Manufacturing Benefit Me?

smart-mean-to-me.jpgWith all the buzz about big data, the Industrial Internet of Things, Industry 4.0 and other advanced manufacturing topics within the industrial community these days, it wouldn’t be surprising if you’ve been asking yourself, “How will smart manufacturing benefit me?”

Well, that depends to a certain extent on whether you’re a supplier or a manufacturer.

As a supplier, the question “How will smart manufacturing benefit me?” leads directly to the value chain, the steps involved in bringing a product from conception to distribution — including procurement of raw materials, manufacturing functions and marketing activities. When smart manufacturing is implemented, the value chain path becomes more informed and fluid, allowing for better demand dynamics throughout the entire chain. Or, as Jim Davis, vice provost of information technology at UCLA, puts it, smart manufacturing makes it possible to approach new levels of precision in new ways with data, information, analytics and modeling.[1]

On the flip side, manufacturers benefit from lower costs resulting from smart manufacturing’s ability to scale IT infrastructure and software access, as it:

  • Facilitates the implementation and reuse of real-time software systems and metrics.
  • Provides trusted value chain data and interoperability.
  • Manages security in networked enterprises.

For both suppliers and manufacturers, smart manufacturing results in more efficient and effective communications, setting the stage for greater product transparency, trackability and traceability. It also allows for the use of models to predict needs and mitigate product variations between suppliers and manufacturers. Via cloud technology, both parties can access a digital certificate of analysis that can lead to an increase in production, quality, visibility and optimization across the value chain.[2]

And that’s not all. There are many more possible answers to the question, “How will smart manufacturing benefit me?”

For one, your company’s productivity will improve, leading to cost savings beyond those provided by smart manufacturing’s scalability. Second, you can invest those savings into product development, leading to innovation and higher-quality products. Third, you’ll attract a younger, more tech-savvy workforce to your business, helping to fill the manufacturing skills gap. And fourth, your energy efficiency will increase.[1]

Smart manufacturing translates into smart factories, which have specific benefits of their own — for example, a leaner process resulting from optimum savings on order management costs, a substantial decrease in material handling costs, the lowest inventory holding cost and the highest availability. Smart factories also provide maximum flexibility, better predictability and more agility.[2]

Finally, you can answer the question, “How will smart manufacturing benefit me?” by visiting the Smart Manufacturing Experience 2020, June 2-4 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh. During three full days of immersive learning, you’ll be able to meet face-to-face with engineers, product designers and managers. Not only will you get inspiration and education about emerging technologies, you’ll find out how to upskill your workforce, improve quality, and, ultimately, advance the future of manufacturing.

Register Now

[1] “Benefits of Using Smart Manufacturing in the Value Chain,” Ellen McKewen, CMTC,
[2] “Benefits of Using Smart Manufacturing in the Value Chain,” Ellen McKewen, CMTC,
[3] “The Benefits of Smart Manufacturing,” Cheryl Beebe, Fishman,
[4] “Smart Manufacturing and Its Benefits on Manufacturing Industry,” Infinite Uptime, Aug. 21, 2018,