Everyone knows about the Industrial Revolution, but actually we have already had four industrial revolutions: the steam engine, the developments of assembly lines and the rise of computers are well known. These revolutions not only brought improvements in productivity and efficiency, but also a complete change in production. The fourth revolution is perhaps not even implemented at your company, and then we haven’t even started to talk about Industry 5.0. In this article you will read all about it.
It is getting harder to produce a product suitable for each customer’s specific demand. Your customers demand customization, speed, transparency and quality, and you naturally want to offer them the right solution, but within certain limits. To achieve this, it’s time to take a good look at the way you work. Your factory needs to change into a smart factory.
The change to a smart factory is also known as Industry 4.0. Digitalization plays an increasingly important role in manufacturing companies. It ensures that the entire supply chain becomes “smart”: from smart production and warehouse management to smart logistics. It also provides connectivity between applications in your existing IT landscape. For example, your CRM can communicate with your ERP package and vice versa.
With Industry 4.0, several benefits have emerged. For manufacturing companies, improvements in productivity and automation became visible and flexibility increased. New business models took on an increasingly important role. This had to be anticipated if a different way of working was more efficient. Sustainable solutions also came into the picture. And by also offering your product range digitally, the customer’s ability to orient himself, improved.
Although some manufacturing companies have yet to make the step to Industry 4.0, the next industrial revolution is already knocking on the door: we welcome Industry 5.0. Digitalization and automation mean that fewer human hands are needed. Something that was previously a positive sign. But is it really that positive? To ensure sustainable success, it is time to bring the human touch back into your production environment. Cooperation between people and smart systems is key.
The focus in Industry 4.0 was mainly on automating business processes, and this remains important. But now it is time for the cooperation between humans and machines to evolve. You want to ensure “harmonious” cooperation between man and machine. By letting machines and robots do the boring, repetitive work, the human-added value becomes visible. With Industry 5.0, every routine job is automated, digitized, virtualized and robotized. This automation allows engineering to focus more on R&D, so your product offerings never stand still and you always stay one step ahead of the competition.
Customization and personalization: your customer wants to receive his “custom” product as quickly as possible. Preferably an instant quote. And that discount should not be forgotten. It’s time to connect the customer to the production process. This was already true in Industry 4.0. The difference is mainly in “hyper-personalization”. Industry 5.0 puts the focus on improving the customer experience.
We are not saying goodbye to Industry 4.0, because version 5.0 is actually mostly a complement to 4.0. The focus is on further developing technology and linking those benefits to your human workforce. And not every company can already start with Industry 5.0, in some cases not even Industry 4.0 yet. It remains a challenge to digitalize and automate business processes. But, if you don’t start now, the competition will. And then you will immediately be five steps behind.
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Elfsquad removes all worries from your pre-production process. With Elfsquad as backbone, we realize the digital factory that smart industries have been trying to find for so long. We do this through a product configurator, with integrated solutions for marketing, sales, and operations.