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The Role of IoT in Industrial Automation

The automation industry has never had such a huge opportunity. Transformative and innovative technologies are making strides all over the world.

Presently, IoT has brought a massive change. Internet of Things (IoT) plays a huge role in the automation industry as it streamlines and creates system architecture that is productive, affordable and responsive.

Putting it simply, IoT is a technology that connects disparate devices with the help of internet and shares data while automating the overall business processes. Manufacturing and distribution industries make use of a multitude of sensors and devices which, when connected via internet can minimize the production time, encourage lean manufacturing and cut unnecessary expenses. This helps businesses reduce human efforts and is the next phase of automation after mechanization. IoT is basically a framework that allows the machines to communicate directly via machine-to-machine interfaces and makes exchanging of data a piece of cake.

Embedded processors and other equipment can monitor faults in the machines, if any. Connected factories are a boon for those manufacturers who want to outperform the competition and stay in pace with the technology.

IoT is the Workhorse of Smart Factories  

Sensors and actuators are the most important factors in IoT. It measures physical variables and carries out commands with the help of thermal, magnetic or physical detectors which are the major component of sensors and detectors. Impact of IoT on industrial automation is pretty high, because IoT enables us to leverage inimitably identifiable electronic devices to their fullest capabilities. The aim of IoT technology is to promote frictionless communication and interaction of devices, in the industries. Examples of connected devices include smoke detectors, smart light bulbs, thermostats and many more.

Smart manufacturing can be described as the idea of seamlessly harnessing data and optimizing it in a standardized manner. The Internet of Things has made business processes error-proof and highly result oriented. Moreover, when IoT is applied in the manufacturing sector, it is known as IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things or Industry 4.0). Business Insider’s premium research service predicted that by the end of 2020, IoT devices will swell from 237 million (2015) to 923 million in 2020. And big players such as General Motors, IBM, Cisco, Microsoft, SAP, TATA Consultancy Services are in the race of smart manufacturing with IoT.

The critical benefits of IIoT that manufacturers ought to be aware of, are –

1. Predictive analysis:  Managing a factory is not an easy task. While there are multiple factors which need to be considered and analyzed, from ensuring the proper working of machines to meeting the quality standards, each business aspect should be on the same page. With IoT, manufacturers can capture and process signals streaming from sensors. This way, manufacturers can detect machine degradation and predict failures without hiring any personnel to assess the machine degradation.

2. Tracking the assets become easier:  Assets, whether current, tangible or intangible are the lifeblood of business. Presently, the organizations work remotely from different locations and thus, it becomes quite difficult for them to track the assets in real-time. With IoT, industries can track tools, stock in transit, and other resources on the go. IoT enabled solutions such as ERP can securely track equipment and machines remotely – enabling your business to save money, reduce risk, and create new revenue streams.

3. Better product quality: Superior product quality is one of the primary objectives of a business owner. If the quality of end products is good, then your customers will be satisfied, wastage will be low, sales will be high and productivity of employees will be boosted. However, one of the major culprits that hinders product quality is faulty equipment. IoT ensures that your machines are calibrated and maintained properly so that the production and product quality does not suffer.

For example, IoT can help you manage the sensors for detecting temperature change, send an alert message to the staff members, design the product with sensors and solve any ad-hoc challenge immediately without delay.

4. Minimum downtime: We can relate downtime with unnecessary expenses, machine failure and different types of losses. IoT is evolving for the businesses to detect problems with the help of sensors. Devices, when connected via internet can improve the overall performance and resolve problems, while minimizing downtime costs. Sensors can easily detect the glitches at the shop floor or in the warehouse and record/ collect the data so that delays are avoided, and downtime is minimized.

More visibility. More collaboration. More simplicity. A streamlined business is a growing business.

Get Prepared for the Competitive Edge  

Since decades, manufacturing companies endeavor to stay competitive while retaining their customers. Evolving technology and changing customer demand can reflect the production cycle and the entire business. For those organizations who want to outpace the market and stay atop, IoT is the apt solution. It allows companies to strategize in a better way while working with greater strength and resiliency. In today’s industry, top performers get their products to market, faster. So can you.

ERP and IoT

Are you one of those manufacturers who usually get stuck with managing the replenishment of goods, re-ordering, warehouse operation, procurement and other operations? Do you require help to addresses these issues with simple technology solutions to help you operate, innovate and grow? If yes, then it is always better to choose an ERP for industrial automation. From automotive manufacturer to telecommunication, medical device to high tech manufacturers, every business owner is looking for an intelligent ERP solution that can be integrated with IoT devices and make the day-to-day work easier.

Written By

OptiProERP delivers rich discretemanufacturing ERP functionality which compliments SAP Business One and helps you streamline your production processes and Quality process. You gain a greater insight into your operations, so that you can act fast and make decisions based on real time information, and help you drive profitable growth.

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