How to Thrive During the Fourth Industrial Revolution

by Bassanio Peters

Thrive to Stay Ahead

The fourth industrial revolution presents itself as a duality – dangers, and opportunities, in the engineering and manufacturing industry. What can businesses do to stay ahead of the curve and thrive in this rapidly evolving world? Failure to do this will leave such companies in the past, and in the danger of inevitable collapse.

“In a fast-moving world, it’s essential for companies to keep up with rapidly evolving tools and technologies. The organizations that do this tend to thrive because they can navigate a constantly changing business landscape” says Bassanio Peters who is the founder of Assist 2 Develop.

However, it is not enough to keep your company up to date with current trends and innovations.  No. To truly thrive and consistently be a step ahead of your competitors, you must fully maximize the full potential of the opportunities presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

3D Printing

Take 3D printing, for instance, the waste from factory floors from conventional manufacturing methods is currently above 20% of raw materials. Market estimates have pegged the raw material waste of 3D printers below 10%.

By exploiting many of the most recent 3D printing innovations, your company can reposition itself to perform at optimal capacity. Placing an emphasis on automation, streamlining processes, and decreasing your spend on raw materials, will undoubtedly increase revenue while cutting down on costs.

However, the 4th industrial revolution brings more than just shiny new toys; there are immense challenges at hand. The most daunting obstacle is definitely in the human resources department. As the technology and manufacturing industry is positioned to grow at an exponential rate, the proportion of skilled personnel available for hire has already triggered some industrywide panic.

Skill Gap

There is a skill gap that needs to be addressed. A combination of an aging workforce rapidly accelerated innovations, and a persistent lack of interest in the manufacturing industry has made acquiring talent harder than ever. Any company able to snag up the few available highly skilled professionals in the labor market today will have gained a sizable advantage over its rivals.

Elimination of the bottlenecks and redundancies that have traditionally plagued the engineering and manufacturing industry is another focal point of the coming era. Take steps to speed up operations: automation of tasks, outsourcing projects requiring specialized skills, and embracing design for manufacturability will give you a competitive advantage.

The importance of adopting the array of technological innovations cannot be overstated. The goal of engineering and manufacturing has shifted, focusing on cost saving, efficiency, and eliminating processes of little to no value.  Reducing waste, and excessive prototyping helps to increase the precision and accuracy in your product development processes. The injection of technology begins right from the conceptualization or idea stage and continues all downstream to prototyping and production.

Adopt & Balance

Taking advantage of the coming wave of innovative products is guaranteed to take your company to the next level.  However, you must account for the negative consequences of rapid industrialization, mainly, a shortage of workforce.  Balancing your company’s adoption of sophisticated software and equipment, and the hiring of adequately skilled talent is enough to put you at the front line of progress in the fourth industrial revolution.  To learn more, download a copy of our Ebook titled: “The Fourth Industrial Revolution – Positioning your Firm to Thrive.”

Listen to the Grinding Gears Podcast (sponsored by SOLIDWORKS) and learn more about Assist 2 Develop here: bit.ly/goa2d

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