FREMONT, CA: The term digital manufacturing has a broad meaning that could describe many parts of the modern manufacturing process. It includes everything from virtual process planning and production line design to a full simulation of the assembly process, including robot interaction and human ergonomics impact. As consumers’ habits and expectations change, so must be the methods of production as digitalization continues to drive revolutionary business opportunities, which is why it’s important for manufacturers to understand the advantages of digital manufacturing. So, here are the benefits manufacturers can expect to achieve.
• Improved Operational Productivity
Removal of manual processes can lead to an improvement in productivity through less rework. The greater reliance on human decisions on a production line, the greater the chance a mistake can happen. Digital representations of production processes can be more cost-effectively modeled when compared to the physical world. Also, fewer constraints exist to experiment with advanced productivity scenarios, which might not be possible in the physical world production environment. A digital manufacturing process that retains process consistency will yield greater output for the same input.
• Ability to Implement New Technologies
If manufacturer want to gain access to new capabilities like the collaboration between employees, predictive analytics, or machine learning technologies, then they will need to invest in building a digital platform to run and take advantage of technologies. Manufacturers cannot participate in the digital manufacturing technology transformation that is part of the Fourth Industrial Revolution if they don’t have the digital infrastructure to add the latest capabilities.
• Attract the Next Generation of Workers
A recent study reveals that a skills gap may leave an estimated 2.4 million positions unfilled between 2018 and 2028 in the manufacturing industry. The best skill source for manufacturing is the next generation, ideally those with some technology education. The more manufacturers invest in digital manufacturing to enhance the work process and employee experience at the factory, the better chance they will have in attracting and retaining new workers.