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Seize Opportunities for Growth with the 8th Annual State of Smart Manufacturing Report

State of Smart Manufacturing, Industry 4.0, Fourth Industrial Revolution
March 16, 2023

“We’ve experienced 20 years of evolution in 2 years.”

This quote from CEO Blake Moret resonates throughout the findings of our 2023 State of Smart Manufacturing Report, which surveyed 1,353 global manufacturers. 

The world has changed, and manufacturing has changed with it, but there is more to do. Skilled labor – and labor of any kind – continues to be elusive across the globe. As manufacturers continue to seek opportunities for profitable growth, they’re finding that uncertainty in workforce availability is impacting quality, along with their ability to meet their customers’ needs and transform at pace. They are addressing this impact by using technology to extract data from their operations and assemble actionable insights. We are also seeing how technology is helping the industry accelerate their agility and competitive differentiation.

The clear message coming from this report is that manufacturers view technology as an advantage for improving quality, agility, innovation, and to attract the next generation of talent. Manufacturers expect to mitigate risk through technology tied to processes and people to build resiliency and drive future success.

Hopefully you find the report useful in benchmarking your organization against peers and as a catalyst for taking action to drive transformation that will deliver differentiated business outcomes in your industry. Before you dive into the results, here are some key takeaways from the findings.

2x as many respondents say they lack the technology to outpace the competition, compared to last year’s survey

Recent years have made a compelling business case for many newer technologies as disruption has demanded accelerated adoption. This unprecedented pace of change is creating competitive pressure across the industry.

Sustainability and ESG are integral to Manufacturing

Over 95% of respondents noted some level of sustainability and/or ESG policy over the last two years, whether formal or informal. Regulations are now applying pressure across the value chain for all companies to address sustainability and ESG in their operations. Smart manufacturing technology solutions can help.

Over 50% more manufacturers are using Machine Learning/Artificial Intelligence compared to last year

This number will continue to rise as manufacturers see the impact that accessible machine learning/ artificial intelligence can have on their business. Improved quality, productivity, and engaging talent to use data driven insights for decision making are some of the benefits.

A third of manufacturers are hampered by ‘technology paralysis’ – an inability to decide between solutions

Technology is demonstrated throughout the report as being crucial to mitigating risk and delivering growth, so manufacturers must overcome indecision by choosing a partner with relevant expertise and experience who can advise and guide them in implementing a fit-for-purpose solution.

97% of participants reported plans to use smart manufacturing technology

Smart manufacturing solutions enable and optimize more agile, resilient production processes, empower the workforce, manage risk, drive sustainability, and accelerate transformation.

While the landscape is not predictable, history is clear in showing that adversity ignites innovation and creates opportunity. Manufacturers with the right vision, strategy, bias for action, and partners will seize this moment to outpace their competitors and forge a bright future.

Discover more stats, tips, and trends by downloading the full 8th Annual State of Smart Manufacturing Report today.

About the Author

Veena Lakkundi Senior Vice President, Corporate Strategy & Development, Rockwell Automation, Inc.

Veena Lakkundi