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Resistance to Change: ISG Survey Reviews Smart Manufacturing Successes and Challenges
[May 31, 2023]

Resistance to Change: ISG Survey Reviews Smart Manufacturing Successes and Challenges

TMCnet News

Technology research and advisory firm Information Services Group, Inc. (ISG) unveiled its 2023 ISG Smart Manufacturing Survey results at a recent industry event.

The report provides several key insights into the success and challenges of smart manufacturing initiatives:

  • The survey notes a significant year-over-year increase in the success rate of smart manufacturing initiatives. As of 2023, 71% of manufacturers reported that they are meeting their anticipated outcomes, a substantial increase from the 37% success rate in 2022.

  • Uncertainty regarding the success of smart manufacturing has plummeted, from 53% in 2022 to just 11% in 2023, visibly demonstrating more confidence in the deployment and outcomes of said initiatives.
  • Within a year, 81% of firms reported achieving tangible results from their smart manufacturing efforts, with productivity improvements, cost savings and supply chain resilience as the main objectives.
  • The number of large-scale smart manufacturing programs has nearly doubled, with 75% of initiatives involving at least 100 professionals in 2023, up from 40% the previous year. Similarly, initiatives involving 2,500 or more employees have also doubled, reflecting the growing commitment to smart manufacturing.

Despite these promising statistics, change management remains a huge challenge. About 58% of businesses consider it at least one of their top three hurdles, with 22% survey respondents calling it "their single most important issue." It would seem that the challenges lie in a lack of a comprehensive change management strategy and "the presence of conflicting priorities in existing programs."

Furthermore, this not exclusive to a single region. Several U.S.-based manufacturers reported legacy equipment as their second-most considerable challenge after change management. And, in contrast, European companies ended up identifying funding, a return on investment (ROI), scalability, training, and IT/OT/ET integration as their top concerns (following change management).

John Lytle, Director of ISG Industrial Manufacturing, emphasized the necessities that come with well-defined change management strategies that harmonize the people, processes, and technologies involved here. (Especially to maximize the benefits of smart manufacturing.)

Lytle also stressed the importance of eliminating silos, facilitating information flow, and promoting leadership, continuous improvement, adaptability and accountability for a successful transition to smart manufacturing.

Edited by Alex Passett

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