IIOT: smart machines - smarter business - smartest returns

IIOT: smart machines - smarter business - smartest returns

9:11 AM, 22nd August 2017
IIOT: smart machines - smarter business - smartest returns
The two-day forum had several international IIOT providers explaining the ways to smoothen this transition from manual to digital while giving a snapshot of the trends happening in the global industry platform.

By Debarati Das

The need of the hour for any and every industry is to be faster, accurate and connected. For this, the global industry is unanimously striding towards becoming an integral part of the Industry 4.0 revolution with smart machines, smart operations and smart manufacturing. India too is picking up the momentum to be a part of this change and employing 'digitalized' business processes and incorporating Industrial Internet of Things (IIOT) in their operations and services.  

The ARC Advisory Group, in July, organised its Fifteenth India Forum titled Industry in Transition: Realizing the Digital Enterprise, in Bengaluru, to discuss how the country is mitigating this change in their systems. The two-day forum had several international IIOT providers including Bentley Systems, Siemens Ltd, IBM, Emerson Automation Solutions etc, explaining the ways to smoothen this transition from manual to digital while giving a snapshot of the trends happening in the global industry platform.

The event also had several Indian companies who spoke about their journey while incorporating IIOT, the challenges they faced and the drastic change that this technology brought to their operations.

“Big change is happening in the software. Leading suppliers are creating software platforms and are shifting towards open platforms helping the companies to make this transition. To become a digital enterprise, all segments of a plant (IT, operations etc) have to be connected digitally to optimize the operations,” said Andy Chatha, President, ARC Advisory Group.

The main question, however, was whether India is ready to change its mindset towards this revolution? Are companies ready to adopt IIOT? Are people/employees ready to move from traditional technology solutions to digital solutions? Is the management ready to invest in this digital technology?

Intelligently connected operations will enable manufacturers to improve uptime, reduce random failures and unplanned shutdowns and thus optimize operating performance making way for smarter products, new service and operating models, new production techniques, and new approaches to design and sourcing.

“ARC believes in collaborative process models to make IIoT a reality. There are so many mega trends happening in the industry. You need to think if you need to be a laggard or be a part of it,” said Ganapathiraman, VP & GM India, ARC Advisory Group.

The forum discussed this technology at length answering various doubts that Indian organizations have such as - How will disruptive technologies change existing products and plants?  How will open source solutions impact traditional software and automation domains?  Is digitalization a threat to cyber security and, if so, how can the risk be mitigated?  How 'smart' are smart machines, and what benefit will these bring?  How do Big Data and predictive and prescriptive analytics enable operational change?  How do connected products create opportunities in aftermarket services?  What are software capabilities needed to achieve transformational change?  Which industries are already changing?  What steps can organizations take to foster innovative thinking?

“Digital is the way to go forward. However, there is a lot to do and to be there, we need to keep the doors ajar,” said M S Niranjan, Director of Engineering, Research and Development, NASSCOM.

“Indian chemical industry is in the right path to adopt IIOT in its system. Some of the major companies like ONGC, Reliance etc have already adopted IIOT in its various operations and that can be a motivation for other companies to follow. Although it might be a slow transition, it is bound to happen,” said Anne-Marie Walters, Global Marketing Director, Bentley Systems.

At the end, it was concurred that it is all about setting the architecture right for this transition from traditional to digital to happen.

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