At a media briefing hosted during its annual customer conference in Singapore today,AVEVA, a global leader in engineering and industrial software, revealed customer validation of business advantage for industrial and capital intensive organizations who leverage digital transformation projects.
While finance, insurance, health and retail sectors have rapidly harnessed the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence and big data to meet the changing needs of their customers, the industrial world has been slower in adopting new technologies. Recent research, conducted by ARC Advisory Group (ARC), of 157 process manufacturers found that there were still barriers in organizational accountability, culture and employee change management that impeded transformation.
Moderating the session today, Craig Resnick, Vice President at ARC Advisory Group, said, “Despite the transformational road not being a straight path, digital transformation is a key driver of change that opens new opportunities for companies to grow and create value. The key to successful digitalization is an agile, digital-savvy leadership that sets forth a strategic vision for organizations, and effectively infuses a digital mindset across the entire workforce.”
During AVEVA’s media session AVEVA’s CEO, Craig Hayman, alongside senior executives from Worley, leading provider of projects and expertise in engineering, procurement and construction, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company and Nestle Worldwide, stressed that it was time for the industrial sector to embrace innovative technology to drive positive business outcomes in order to realize greater productivity, optimize energy consumption and the return on investment.
Time to Break Down Barriers to Adoption
According to research conducted by ARC, although more than eighty percent of industrial process manufacturers are piloting advanced technology, only five to eight percent of them are ready for digital transformation today. The main barriers to adoption, according to ARC, are organizational makeup and scalability of use cases and users while the biggest driver of digital transformation in the industrial sector is the need to address the business consequences of unplanned downtime.
“It’s never been easier to begin a digital transformation program, as cheap access to cloud computing, great connectivity, a merged edge and enterprise combined with analytics and machine learning, means that the ability to digitally drive productivity improvements into the industrial world is now unprecedented, “commented Craig Hayman, CEO of AVEVA. “Leaders driving the next wave of transformation know they must move quickly. AVEVA works as a partner to accelerate organizations on their digital journey, helping them accelerate the use of digital technology, realize the value of a digital twin and build a digital team.”
Untold Benefits of Digital Transformation for The Industrial Sector
The benefits of digital transformation in the industrial sector are many. Improved asset health will result in a reduction in unplanned downtime and better asset performance, while incident prediction capabilities have the power to lower operational risk and protect worker safety. Furthermore, cognitive learning can deliver digitized intelligence resulting in knowledge and experience being freely available throughout the organization.
At the conference, Craig Hayman also outlined three key steps to accelerating the organizational digital transformational journey. Firstly, he urged organizations to ‘snap in’ a unified operating center to visualize the industrial data they already had. Secondly, organizations need to use data to free up the OPEX or operating budget, build a knowledge graph about an asset as well as utilize machine learning and artificial intelligence to predict when it will fail before it fails. This process called Asset Performance Management or APM, is a hot area that has moved very quickly with a lot of innovation. Finally, organizations should use their data to remove risk bringing simulation into engineering design and using the cloud to eliminate legacy workflows.
“Over time, these three steps combine into an end-to-end digital twin, that spans from an organization’s original engineering data through to operational performance and maintenance work,” commented Hayman. “By leveraging the integrated data and analytical capabilities of the individual digital twin, companies can embark on true digitalization to optimize their asset’s lifecycle. This process begins with the initial capital investments right through to the operating phase of a modern plant, refinery, or smart city.”