The Future of Manufacturing -- What are the New Core Technologies?

This month, Philip J. Gisi published his third book with Productivity Press entitled The Dark Factory and the Future of Manufacturing: A Guide to Operational Efficiency and Competitiveness. His new book provides a view into the future and direction on how to navigate the journey to a more automated, smarter, and continuously learning factory. This book consolidates the major elements of the fourth industrial revolution and describes them in clear terms within the context of integrated manufacturing. It creates awareness and a fundamental understanding of the advanced technologies that are coming together to facilitate highly automated, smarter, agile, and sustainable operations.

When I spoke with Phil this past week, I asked him: "What are some of the newer core technologies in manufacturing and how are they being used?” Here is his complete answer:

Manufacturing is undergoing a significant transformation with the adoption of several newer core technologies such as the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI), Augmented Reality (AR) / Virtual Reality (VR), and Digital Twins. IIoT involves connecting machinery, sensors, and other devices to collect and exchange data. This data can be used for real-time monitoring, predictive maintenance, and improving overall efficiency.  AI is being used in manufacturing for process optimization, quality control, predictive maintenance, and even autonomous decision-making. Machine learning algorithms can analyze vast amounts of data to identify patterns and make predictions to avoid unplanned equipment downtime.  

AR and VR technologies are being used in manufacturing for training, design visualization, and maintenance. These technologies can help improve efficiency, reduce errors, and enhance collaboration while the application of a digital twin, serving as a virtual model of a physical manufacturing asset, process, or system, can enable real-time monitoring, simulation, and optimization, leading to improved performance and reduced downtime. As I stated in my latest book, “Manufacturers must be aware of, understand, and embrace these changes to stay competitive and meet the evolving demands of customers in the modern era. This book enhances the awareness and understanding of these core technologies by explaining what they are and how they are being used in manufacturing."  Clearly, these technologies are reshaping the future of manufacturing and will continue to do so as they evolve within the scope of the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0 for short.

What do you think of Philip's perspective? Are these core technologies now part of your business? If so, have they delivered the expected results?


Lean Six Sigma -- Its Evolving Best Practices and Issues

This past December, Terra Vanzant Stern published the third edition of Lean Six Sigma: International Standards and Global Guidelines. Lean Six Sigma (LSS) is designed to accommodate global challenges and constraints by capitalizing on Six Sigma and Lean Thinking, and her book assumes that the overall goal of operational excellence is to ensure that organizational tasks and activities are being performed to the best of their process capabilities. It defines continuous improvement as activities that support and empower environments to make flexible decisions that lead to ongoing improvement and effectiveness. It covers new global LSS standards, international implementation of process improvement programs,  new international LSS applications, and international LSS areas of competency.

When I spoke with Terra this month, I asked her: "What important updates are covered in this third edition of your book?” Here is her complete answer:

The updates included in this edition are crucial because I have taken Lean Six Sigma to new heights, incorporating cutting-edge updates and advancements that will leave you captivated. With a focus on enhancing change management and data governance programs, this edition is a game-changer for organizations seeking to optimize their processes and drive sustainable growth.

What sets this edition apart is its ability to seamlessly integrate process improvement methodologies with change management and data governance. We understand that these three pillars are essential for organizations to thrive in the current dynamic business landscape. By leveraging Lean Six Sigma principles, you can streamline your processes, drive efficiency, and achieve remarkable results.

Imagine a world where every process is optimized, every change is seamlessly implemented, and every data point is governed with precision. This vision becomes a reality with the help of the latest edition of this book. I have meticulously crafted a framework that empowers organizations to achieve operational excellence while ensuring compliance and data integrity.

But what truly makes this edition intriguing is the transformative power it holds. By embracing Lean Six Sigma, organizations can unlock their full potential and drive a culture of continuous improvement. From reducing waste and defects to enhancing customer satisfaction, the possibilities are endless.

With this third edition of the book, you surely discover how Lean Six Sigma can revolutionize your organization's process improvement, change management, and data governance programs. Embrace the power of Lean Six Sigma and unlock a world of endless possibilities.

The new edition of this book assists you as you embark on a journey toward operational excellence, enhanced change management, and impeccable data governance. It's time to revolutionize the way you do business.

What are your experiences with Lean Six Sigma initiatives? What issues and aspects do you feel should be incorporated as organizations change and evolve?