The Internet of Things (IoT) is about connecting devices into networks to work together. In other words, IoT is all about microprocessing and splitting larger systems into various smaller ones, i.e., the shift in design from monolithic machines to segmented ones. It is substantially easier to manage the network, upgrade it, and maintain it.
In manufacturing contexts, the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is crucial for several reasons, as manufacturers need data to understand their performance and the reason for downtime that helps them make decisions to improve their business efficiency. This process can be achieved by combining IIoT systems with artificial intelligence. Even with the development of cloud and allied technologies, IoT technology in industrial devices effectively improves operation.
The Industrial Internet of Things has a massive and growing influence on the manufacturing industry driving capabilities enabling unparalleled productivity, operational efficiency, and performance, so it wouldn’t be wrong to say that Industrial IoT is one of the main driving forces behind Industry 4.0.
This blog explores how manufacturing industries benefit from adopting Industrial IoT solutions and their connected devices.
Benefits of Industrial IoT in Manufacturing
When a product is being manufactured, the manufacturer needs to track the exact stage of that product and has to control the machines based on production timings. The asset tracking system intelligently powered by IIoT technology in manufacturing devices provides a real-time overview of the equipment performance, production process, and release of completed goods, allowing us to take earlier actions in case of process deviations.
Faster and informed decision-making
IIoT can significantly improve decision-making by unlocking critical data about equipment performance in the network and providing insights to appropriate recipients. This generated data enables the manufacturers to check device status, calculate the time required for the product’s completion and monitor machine maintenance requirements. Finally, operators would analyze the main cause of a problem and work on an alternate plan to avoid failure in advance leading to continuous improvement as manufacturers refine the system.
Predictive maintenance for industry 4.0 prevents asset failure by analyzing production data to identify patterns and predict issues even before they occur. IIoT sensors working along with manufacturing equipment enable condition-based maintenance alerts. These sensors can record temperature, humidity, and other atmospheric conditions on the shop floor and predict the composition of materials used and the impact of shipping container/vehicle environmental conditions on the product. IIoT sensors that can actively monitor the temperature, vibrations, and other factors that cause problematic operating conditions are a boon to facility management. By proactively monitoring machinery conditions, manufacturers can prevent asset failure, lower costs, and reduce machine downtime.
Manufacturers leverage the Industrial Internet of Things to reduce the cost of manufacturing by increasing process efficiency. By utilizing connected devices, manufacturers can streamline their workflows, automating a significant part of the manual input and data collection associated with the conventional process. Machine monitoring capabilities provide manufacturers with the status of their equipment’s health, enabling them to implement preventive maintenance. Energy and materials losses caused by downtime are the most significant expenses for manufacturing companies; however, the process automated with IIoT results in a considerable reduction of operational costs eliminating costly equipment and machinery failure, thus saving money
Efficient and improved productivity
Introducing IIoT technology in manufacturing helps monitor the equipment’s performance in real-time and early detection of any downtime. It allows the manufacturers to improve overall equipment effectiveness by getting the most out of the machines in their operating period. Additionally, adopting IIoT devices provides better human capital utilization by deploying smart devices to handle more menial and repetitive tasks, freeing up human resources to do other duties.
Safety and Compliance
Beyond the cost savings and productivity gains, “Smart manufacturing” enables “smart security”, with all IIoT sensors working together to monitor and ensure workplace and employee safety. Machines in manufacturing industries might become hazardous to employees when they are not serviced regularly. IIoT automation units can monitor the machine’s potential dangerous failures to ensure employees’ safety. IoT-connected safety equipment works in real-time to alert someone nearby, ensuring immediate action and faster access to care while operating dangerous equipment or performing repairs in a remote part of the facility.
Real-time manufacturing visibility
Adopting IoT provides manufacturers with real-time production tracking and holistic visibility on the shop floor. Connecting with and drawing data from machines on the shop floor enables the supervisors and managers visibility of what’s going on across the factory floor. By analyzing the data generated through informative insights, operators can also find the root causes of any problems during production.
Reduce quality defects
Embracing IIoT pushes manufacturers to implement automated processes in the factory by eliminating the human element in the most automation-hungry processes. It helps eliminate errors and mistakes that translate to defective items coming off the production line. Real-time video connectivity through IIoT devices can support artificial intelligence efforts like an automated visual inspection. It allows Artificial Intelligence (AI) to detect defectives and remove them from the assembly line before they can be shipped off. With significantly fewer quality defects, the business becomes more profitable with increased customer satisfaction and brand reputation.
Prompt to market
With IIoT solutions, direct communication between employees and network components can be achieved, which enhances productivity. Additionally, faster decision-making facilitated by real-time data improves response to market fluctuations.
Highly Satisfied Customers
Quality determines customer satisfaction and turns prospects into loyal clients. IIoT-connected devices enable predictive maintenance and statistical evaluations to plan, innovate, build, design, operate, and maintain manufacturing facilities resulting in high-quality products. IIoT-connected devices also enable manufacturers to prevent the commercial distribution of defective goods, significantly enhancing customer satisfaction.
Increased agility and flexibility
Constantly changing demands of the end customer pushes manufacturers to become increasingly flexible and agile across the factory. However, the bi-directional connectivity through IIoT devices enables a seamless connection with industrial assets and IIoT platforms, providing Human Machine Interface (HMI) tailored data for various roles on the shop floor ranging from CXO to front-line workers. Industrial IoT devices and robots can be easily programmed and updated to adapt to the demand change and increasingly customized customer requirements.
In a nutshell
Industrial IoT is a Digital Transformation on steroids that integrates the physical and digital worlds. This integration accelerates productivity by making the working conditions safer for employees, minimizes downtime and thus being a competitive edge to other businesses.
Today, 91% of manufacturing enterprises invest in smart manufacturing and IIoT. We expect that the economic impact of Industrial IoT on the manufacturing sector will reach $11.1 trillion a year by 2025.
With several years of experience in holistic IoT implementations, we will spearhead a successful IoT transformation for your business.
Our custom IIoT solutions will empower you to connect, manage and monitor your machines resulting in reduced costs and increased efficiency.
Talk to us and find out how you can leverage IIoT to drive growth for your manufacturing business!