Brandon Lee, Country Manager for ATS Applied Tech Systems Private Limited, shares his expertise on Industry 4.0 and Digital Transformation with AsiaPacific Food Industry News.

The key to adopting Industry 4.0 is by viewing it as an evolution instead of revolution. Manufacturers must have their digital manufacturing competencies scorecard and implement strategies and solutions that power the improvement of their various capabilities continuously.

Return-on-investment (ROI)

There is no one-size-fits-all strategy, and identifying which capabilities to build on first is greatly dependent on the business model and collaboration platform available for each manufacturer. This means that return-on-investment is key for adopting Industry 4.0 initiatives.

Generally, digitisation of records, traceability, and visibility are always good projects to take on first before any other form of automation so that you can understand exactly the value and impact of any improvement activities.

What are the benefits of adopting Industry 4.0 practices for SMEs?

Industry 4.0 works on three areas of capabilities:

  • The first is creating a cyber physical system that enables clear traceability and real-time visibility. Traceability is one of the most important components in the food industry due to food safety requirements and the need for sustainable food sources. Real-time visibility allows the continuous performance of the management program that runs the operation programs.
  • Another area is the integration of the value-chain through virtual collaboration that can potentially shorten the supply-chain, encourage the use of shared services, enhance shared development, and improve efficiency.
  • Powering the business process re-engineering and innovation through providing customisation and services on top of the product, is another area of capabilities. An example for the food industry would be the production of the different types of food products and packaging, according to market response. Analytics would be able to provide faster and more accurate feedback to food producers, and shop floor digitalisation can enable highly flexible handling of product change and customisation.

Learn more about Digital Transformation in the interview which Brandon Lee gave to AsiaPacific Food Industry News.