Enterprises in Germany Move Toward Smart Factories in Response to Globalization

FRANKFURT, Germany, Feb. 18, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Manufacturers in Germany are looking for ways to set up smart factories or further digitize their existing plants in response to the globalization of production, according to a new report published today by Information Services Group (ISG) (Nasdaq: III), a leading global technology research and advisory firm.The 2019-2020 ISG Provider Lens Digital Transformation – Manufacturing Services & Solutions Report for Germany finds traditional manufacturers facing competition from digitally focused newcomers able to establish new business models because they are unencumbered by legacy operations. New technologies like industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), big data analytics, digital twins, collaborative robotics and additive manufacturing allow manufacturers to become more efficient, flexible and innovative.“The smart manufacturing landscape rises vertically from the shop floor up to ERP and the cloud and spans the entire value chain,” said Christian Decker, partner and lead, smart manufacturing vertical, ISG EMEA. “It is about leveraging new technologies and exploiting the captured data of machines and processes to make both machines and human workers smarter and more efficient. The primary objective is to optimize manufacturing productivity, beyond what a human operator can do. Smart manufacturing also enables greater flexibility and new business models.”Digital transformation is visible in many places in the German manufacturing sector, leading to a radical change in the entire industry, the report says. “However, the maturity of Industry 4.0 greatly varies in Germany. For example, the B2C industry is aiming at highly adaptable, customer-centric plants, to meet the demand for products customized to individual needs, whereas large-scale process industries are more focused on productivity improvements,” Decker added.The report also notes that smart factories span all layers of the technology stack, from the physical to the virtual. Various solution vendors are battling to offer software to enable manufacturing execution systems (MES), product lifecycle management (PLM), IIoT and ERP.The report finds three key technology trends that are critical to setting up smart factories.First, digital manufacturing providers are pairing applied analytics skills to digitized production transformation projects. Data analytics can fundamentally change the production landscape and revolutionize supply chains, the report says.Second, virtualization of products and processes, using concepts such as digital twins or virtual and augmented reality, have become increasingly important in digital manufacturing, the report says. Enterprises are using VR and AR to create virtual prototypes, plan production and to virtually train employees.Finally, near-real-time networks enable connections to factory automation using licensed radio spectrum. The new 5G standard allows real-time communications, including robotic peer-to-peer connections without latency, the report says. Integrated cybersecurity solutions, however, are needed across the IT and operational technology (OT) domains to ensure operational continuity.The 2019-2020 ISG Provider Lens Digital Transformation – Manufacturing Services & Solutions Report for Germany evaluates the capabilities of 77 providers across seven quadrants: Manufacturing Data Analytics Solutions, Manufacturing Virtualization Solutions, Manufacturing Connectivity Solutions, Manufacturing Analytics Services, Digital Consulting and Engineering Services, Digital DevOps and Software Engineering Services, and Manufacturing Blockchain Services.The report names Atos and IBM as leaders in four quadrants and Bosch, Capgemini, Cognizant, DXC Technology and Siemens as leaders in three. CANCOM, Cisco, HCL, Infosys and Tech Mahindra are named leaders in two quadrants, and Accenture, Alexander Thamm, Arxum, CGI, Dassault, Device Insight, FORCAM, Fujitsu, Microsoft, PTC, QuEST Global and TCS are all named leaders in one.The 2019-2020 ISG Provider Lens Digital Transformation – Manufacturing Services & Solutions Report for Germany is available to ISG Insights™ subscribers or for one-time purchase on this webpage.About ISG Provider Lens™ ResearchThe ISG Provider Lens™ Quadrant research series is the only service provider evaluation of its kind to combine empirical, data-driven research and market analysis with the real-world experience and observations of ISG’s global advisory team. Enterprises will find a wealth of detailed data and market analysis to help guide their selection of appropriate sourcing partners, while ISG advisors use the reports to validate their own market knowledge and make recommendations to ISG’s enterprise clients. The research currently covers providers offering their services globally, across Europe and Latin America, as well as in the U.S., Germany, the U.K., France, the Nordics, Brazil and Australia/New Zealand, with additional markets to be added in the future. For more information about ISG Provider Lens research, please visit this webpage.The series is a complement to the ISG Provider Lens Archetype reports, which offer a first-of-its-kind evaluation of providers from the perspective of specific buyer types.About ISGISG (Information Services Group) (Nasdaq: III) is a leading global technology research and advisory firm. A trusted business partner to more than 700 clients, including more than 70 of the top 100 enterprises in the world, ISG is committed to helping corporations, public sector organizations, and service and technology providers achieve operational excellence and faster growth. The firm specializes in digital transformation services, including automation, cloud and data analytics; sourcing advisory; managed governance and risk services; network carrier services; strategy and operations design; change management; market intelligence and technology research and analysis. Founded in 2006, and based in Stamford, Conn., ISG employs more than 1,300 digital-ready professionals operating in more than 20 countries—a global team known for its innovative thinking, market influence, deep industry and technology expertise, and world-class research and analytical capabilities based on the industry’s most comprehensive marketplace data. For more information, visit www.isg-one.com.
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