Supply chain integration, automation, and analytics are among the top action items for 2017 identified by manufacturers, reported IQMS, a leading manufacturing ERP software and manufacturing execution system (MES) authority. For IQMS, the focus in 2017 will be helping its customers to address these priorities through the practical application of Industry 4.0 and smart manufacturing concepts, which have established new benchmarks for manufacturers in North America and beyond.

With a mission to keep traditional manufacturing countries competitive in a low-cost global manufacturing environment, Industry 4.0 fundamentally addresses automation and data exchange in manufacturing plants. Core tools of Industry 4.0 include work center automation, production monitoring, and predictive analytics, which increasingly rely on the Internet of things (IoT) and cloud computing to serve as their infrastructural backbone. Despite the availability of proven manufacturing solutions in these areas, to date there remains a gap in adoption at many mid-tier companies.

“A lot of what we hear about Industry 4.0 today could be considered too advanced for all but the largest manufacturers,” said Steve Bieszczat, IQMS CMO. “However, there are a lot of practical applications within Industry 4.0 from which some of our mid-market customers are already benefiting. In 2017, we want to help other mid-size manufacturers realize similar gains by incrementally applying software functionality that enables an Industry 4.0 approach to their operations.”

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