Sign in or Register
A Very warm welcome to Fictron Industrial Supplies!

YOUR TOTAL SOLUTION FOR INDUSTRIAL & AUTOMATION NEEDS!

-REPAIRS - ON-SITE -SALES - TRAINING


Your one-stop source for all things Industrial Automation!

Contact us Now to Win a Great Quote!

[NO MOQ FOR MOST ITEMS!] [5 WORKING DAYS LEAD TIME] [GREAT PRICES FOR BULK ORDERS]


Training on Electronic Engineering Topics:

[INDUSTRIAL ELECTRONIC REPAIR LEVEL 1 & 2] [ADVANCED SMD SOLDERING AND PCB REWORK]

[PROGRAMMING MICROCONTROLLER CHIPS (PIC & AVR)] [YOUR DESIRED SYLLABUS]


Industrial Electronic Automation REPAIRS

IS OUR SPECIALTY!

Authorized Repair Center for KEB Germany.

[ON-SITE/IN-HOUSE] [TROUBLESHOOTING] [FREE EVALUATION]



Fictron Industrial Supplies Sdn Bhd
5-6, Jalan USJ 9/5Q,
Subang Business Centre,
47620 UEP Subang Jaya,
Selangor, Malaysia.
+603-8023 9829
+603-8023 7089
Selangor Office:
36, Jalan Puteri 5/12,
Bandar Puteri,
47100 Puchong,
Selangor.

Penang Office:
44A Jalan Besi,
11600 Green Lane,
Penang, Malaysia.
+604-6192582
+604-6192583

Latest News

China's Economic Activity Weakens Amid Tariff War

May 17, 2019
China's Economic Activity Weakens Amid Tariff War
View Full Size
China's factory output and consumer spending compromised in April as a tariff war with Washington intensified, adding to pressure on Beijing to shore up shaky economic growth.
 
Wednesday's all of a sudden weak data prompted suggestions Beijing has to boost stimulus spending and bank lending to hit this year's official economic growth target of 6 percent to 6.5 percent.
 
President Xi Jinping's government has expressed confidence the economy can hold up to U.S. tariff hikes in their fight over Chinese technology ambitions and other trade irritants. But forecasters say damage might spread beyond export-driven manufacturing industries if consumer and business confidence suffers, depressing spending and investment.
 
Consumer demand is 'softening at a time when the export sector is taking a big hit,' Rajiv Biswas of IHS Markit said in a report. 'Chinese policymakers will therefore need to roll out further fiscal and monetary policy stimulus,' Biswas said.
 
April's growth in factory output hesitant to 5.4 percent over a year earlier from March's 8.5 percent growth, as stated by the National Bureau of Statistics.
 
Retail sales growth dropped to 7.2 percent over a year ago from the previous month's 8.7 percent. That is a setback for Chinese leaders who wish to promote self-sustaining economic growth based upon domestic consumption in the place of trade and investment.
 
Chinese economic growth held stable in the latest quarter at 6.4 percent over one year before. But that was supported by higher government spending and bank lending to reverse an economic slowdown. President Donald Trump's tariff hikes on Chinese imports have been hard on manufacturers. The escalating dispute also is unnerving Chinese consumers, depressing domestic demand.
 
Forecasters express a U.S. tariff increase on $200 billion of Chinese imports that took effect Friday could trim economic growth by 0.5 percentage points, stalling a recovery that looked to be gaining traction. They say the loss could increase to 1 percentage point if both sides extend penalties to all of each other's goods. That would push yearly growth under 6 percent, raising the risk of politically dangerous job losses.
 
'Policymakers are likely to step up stimulus again, mainly through pushing banks to make more loans and ramping up fiscal spending,' Macquarie Bank said in a report.
 
It alerted of 'rising volatility' in financial markets as a result of uncertainty about trade and economic growth. 'Things might have to get worse first to convince politicians to be realistic and get things done,' mentioned the report.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

German Business Outlook Darkens Amid Trade Slowdown

May 17, 2019
German Business Outlook Darkens Amid Trade Slowdown
View Full Size
An index of German business optimism crumbled in April as Europe's largest economy challenges with a slowdown in trade and manufacturing even while it finds support from a strong labor market.
 
The Ifo institute said Wednesday its business climate index slipped to 99.2 points from 99.7 points in March, revealing managers were less satisfied with both the current situation and the outlook for the future.
 
The survey was worse than forecast by market analysts, who had anticipated a slight increase.
 
'This is consistent with our view that Germany's economy is likely to grow at a very anemic pace this year, even if there is a slight pickup in growth' in the first quarter, mentioned Andrew Kenningham, chief Europe economist at Capital Economics.
 
German's economy lived with flat growth at the end of last year inspite of low unemployment that has helped keep consumers spending. The jobless level was just 3.1 percent in February. The slowdown was blamed on one-time factors such as troubles in the auto industry over new emissions standards and low river levels that disrupted production. Slowing global trade has held back export-oriented manufacturing.
 
The government on April 17 cut its growth forecast for the full year to 0.5 percent.
 
A lesser pessimistic view was taken by Carsten Brzeski, chief economist at ING Germany. He stated the picture in industry had not been as miserable as some recent data would indicate. Recent zig-zagging of indicators 'should be seen as evidence of a bottoming out — confusion as a sign of stabilization,' he wrote in an email.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

Japan Reports Exports, Trade Surplus Slid in March

May 17, 2019
Japan Reports Exports, Trade Surplus Slid in March
View Full Size
Japan's exports at a decline in March as shipments to China dropped more than 9%, pulling the nation's trade surplus sharply lower.
 
The data released Wednesday by the Finance Ministry was almost in line with forecasts. The report followed two days of trade talks with the U.S. in Washington aimed at redressing the chronic imbalance in Japan's favor, that totaled $67.6 billion in 2018 according to U.S. figures.
 
Exports from Japan, the world's 3rd largest economy, fell 2.4% from one year earlier to 7.2 trillion yen ($64 billion), while imports rose 1% to 6.7 trillion yen ($59 billion). The trade surplus dropped 32% from a year earlier to 528.5 billion yen ($4.7 billion), customs figures showed.
 
Exports to the U.S., Japan's biggest single overseas market, rose 4.4% while imports fell, increasing the politically sensitive trade surplus by nearly 10, to 683.6 billion yen ($6.1 billion), up 9.8% from the same month a-year earlier.
 
Japan's exports to China fell 9.4% from a-year earlier, highlighting smaller demand as the economy slows down amid a trade conflict with the U.S. over Beijing's technology ambitions.
 
Darren Aw of Capital Economics stated in a commentary that the deficit in March was not a significant concern and that overall, trade might have contributed to economic growth in the last quarter.
 
'The bigger picture, however, remains unchanged — the outlook for external demand remains weak,' he said.
 
U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer's office said in a statement that he and Japan's trade minister Toshimitsu Motegi agreed to continue talks soon.
 
In Tokyo, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said to a regular news conference that he obtained a report from Washington that the two sides had started negotiations consistent with an agreement last September between Trump and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. The talks included trade in agricultural products and autos.
 
'I expect we will have constructive talks so that we have meaningful results that serve our national interest,' he said.
 
Motegi explained reporters that he told Lighthizer that Japan is not going to compromise on imports of agricultural products, saying that the conditions agreed in past negotiations are as far as Japan could go.
 
Japan made significant concessions on imports of dairy and other farm products while tough negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a Pacific Rim trade deal which President Donald Trump withdrew from shortly after taking office in 2017.
 
'In the area of agricultural products, conditions we have promised in past economic cooperation is as far as we can go. I have told him that that's the line Japan cannot go beyond,' he stated.
 
Japan's conservative ruling party, the Liberal Democrats, have usually depended on strong support from rural voters and have sought to defend the country's farm sector from foreign competition.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

US trade war will only make us stronger, China's top paper says

May 17, 2019
US trade war will only make us stronger, China's top paper says
View Full Size
The trade war with the United States will simply make China more powerful and will never bring the country to its knees, the Communist Party's People's Daily published in a front page commentary that evoked the patriotic spirit of past wars.
 
The world's two largest economies are locked in an increasingly acrimonious trade contest that has seen them level tariffs on each other's imports.
 
Tensions gotten worse this week following the Trump administration officially added China's Huawei Technologies to a trade blacklist, right away enacting restrictions that will make it exceedingly tough for the telecom giant to do business with US companies.
 
In a stridently nationalistic commentary, the ruling party's official newspaper outlined China's dedication to cover its national interests and dignity as being as 'firm as a boulder'. 'The trade war can't bring China down. It will only harden us to grow stronger,' it noted.
 
'What kind of storms have not been seen, what bumps have not experienced for China, with its more than 5,000 years of civilization? In the face of hurricanes, the nearly 1.4 billion Chinese people have confidence and stamina.'
 
China's confidence originates from the spirit of its people's perseverance and endless struggle, it added, quoting major disasters like floods, SARS and 2008's massive Sichuan earthquake.
 
'From the Opium War to the Sino-Japanese War to the War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression and the War to Resist US Aggression and Aid Korea - catastrophe and misery have come one after the other, tempering the Chinese people, pushing Chinese society to forge ahead in setbacks and move on in trouble.'
 
On Thursday, China's Commerce Ministry had slammed the US government's decision to blacklist Huawei, and claimed it will take steps to protect its companies, in a further test of ties as the economic heavyweights clash over trade.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

MHI Machine Tool to Showcase State-of-the-Art Metal 3D Additive Manufacturing Technology

May 17, 2019
MHI Machine Tool to Showcase State-of-the-Art Metal 3D Additive Manufacturing Technology
View Full Size
Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Machine Tool Co., Ltd., a group company of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd. (MHI)(TOKYO:7011) based in Ritto, Shiga Prefecture, is set to begin overseas marketing of its 3D (three-dimensional) printer using its proprietary Directed Energy Deposition (DED) process.1 The aim is to enhance recognition and gain a foothold in the United States, which is driving the rapidly growing global market for 3D printing. As a first step, MHI Machine Tool will attend RAPID + TCT 2019, a trade fair for expert additive manufacturing technologies, held from May 20-23 in Detroit, in order to showcase its new technologies essential for the functional application of metal 3D printing, along with the monitoring feedback and local shielding functions. These latter two functions are the world's first practical applications of new technology.
 
This metal 3D printer was evolved by MHI Machine Tool based on the results from a technology development project2 conducted by the Technology Research Association for Future Additive Manufacturing (TRAFAM), commissioned by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO). The entry model 'LAMDA 200,' particular for the manufacture of small prototype components, was established in March 2019. In the proprietary DED process, powder is constantly injected from a nozzle, then melted and solidified by laser irradiation. Compared to the powder bed fusion (PBF) process, in which material is created by rolling out and filling the metal powder in a tank (bed), molding speed is more than 10 times faster, and with the elimination of the tank for the metal powder, DED assists for the manufacture of larger objects not possible with PBF. Further, the constant supply of material prevents the need to switch materials during the molding process, helping for the forming of composite material components from many different metal powders. Going forward, this process is estimated to be applied for the development of functionally gradient materials joining together components made of unique materials. Along with this technology, MHI Machine Tool is on the verge of attaining practical application of monitoring feedback and local shielding functions, which will enhance the stability of molding quality and allow for the formation of giant components.
 
Particularly, the monitoring function is a system that uses a camera and sensors to monitor the printing status. The feedback function then utilizes the monitoring results to control the laser output and other printing conditions in real time, stabilizing the melting and solidification of the metal. Previously, the optimal printing conditions for various shape were determined through trial and error. The spying and feedback function optimizes the printing conditions automatically, eliminating the need for trial and error. The shielding function eliminates oxygen from the ambient environment around the nozzle during DED process, preventing oxidation of the melted metal. The local shielding function allows for printing of materials such as titanium and aluminum, which are averse to oxidation, in an air environment without the use of a chamber. Use of these functions also eliminates the restrictions on the size of 3D printing objects, making the system applicable for the manufacture of larger components, which has been an issue in such industries as aerospace. MHI Machine Tool will present the development results of its monitoring feedback and local shielding functions at RAPID + TCT 2019.
 
Demand for high-performance components made from a variety of materials is projected to increase worldwide, particularly in such industries as aerospace, where components are continually being made lighter, and the automotive industry, which continually demands cutting-edge technologies. MHI Machine Tool is resolving the issues with practical application of metal 3D printing, and going forward, through proposals for formation processes for high-performance materials, will focus on raising awareness and uncovering demand for metal 3D printing. With the new approach of metal additive manufacturing, we will broaden the scope of manufacturing that has reached the limits of conventional cutting and grinding processing technologies.
 
Notes
 
*1:
Directed Energy Deposition (DED) is an additive manufacturing process in which focused thermal energy is used to melt and fuse material.
 
*2:
The new 3D printer applies the results of the development project funded by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO).



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Optomec Partners with Select Additive Technologies

May 17, 2019
Optomec Partners with Select Additive Technologies
View Full Size
Optomec - a major global distributor of production-grade additive manufacturing systems for 3D printed metals, today revealed it has signed an agreement with Select Additive Technologies, a division of the Morris Group, Inc., making the full range of Optomec's Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS) 3D Metal Printing systems offered through one of the biggest CNC machine tool distribution networks in North America. .
 
'Adding Optomec's industry-leading LENS systems to our distributors' existing lineup of CNC machine tools enhances our end-to-end suite of complex solutions for preciseness metal part repair and production,' said Jeff Holtzapple, Business Development Manager, Select Additive Technologies. 'Optomec incorporates decades of experience in directed energy deposition (DED) into its LENS metal additive manufacturing solutions, resulting in high-quality, affordable metal 3D printing solutions that make complex metal parts easier, more accurate, efficient and affordable to make and repair.'
 
A division of Morris Group, Inc., Select Additive Technologies specializes in the area of additive manufacturing. The organization brings additive manufacturing solutions to market via the Morris Group, Inc. owned distribution network, which has an established reputation for providing excellent customer service and longtime partnerships with major brands of machine tools, tooling, accessories and software.
 
'Having the Optomec LENS product lines showed by Select Machining Technologies is a great milestone in assisting metal additive manufacturing gain deeper penetration into the industrial mainstream,' said Mr. Dave Ramahi, Optomec president and CEO. 'With more than seventy-five years of manufacturing experience, knowledge and customer support, the distribution network with which they work serves industrial companies from virtually every industry. We could not ask for a better partner to help boost our exposure and reach in the US. '
 
Select Additive Technologies will signify the full range of Optomec's LENS systems, which use high-powered lasers to build structures layer by layer directly from powdered metals, alloys, ceramics or composites. LENS systems enable companies to cost-effectively repair, rework and manufacture fully dense, high-performance metal components with excellent mechanical and fatigue properties.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Printer Working Group (PWG) to Address 3D Printing Standards

May 17, 2019
Printer Working Group (PWG) to Address 3D Printing Standards
View Full Size
A subgroup focused on 3D printing has lengthened IPP to incorporate the needs of 3D printing to help data exchange and embedding within ordinary 3D file formats including 3MF and 3D PDF documents, so that user intent is preserved despite of the transport or workflow use.
 
PISCATAWAY, N.J., May 17, 2019 - The Printer Working Group (PWG) will speak May 21, 2019 at the RAPID+TCT event, Detroit, Mich. Paul Tykodi, PWG IPP Working Group co-chair, will address the work of PWG to standardize and simplify additive (3D) printing across devices.
 
With printer industry members, PWG has created and advertised the widely implemented Internet Printing Protocol (IPP). A subgroup concentrated on 3D printing has stretched IPP to incorporate the requirements of 3D printing to support data exchange and embedding within common 3D file formats including 3MF and 3D PDF documents, so that user intent is stored regardless of the transport or workflow use.
 
Tykodi's session at 3:55 p.m. Eastern will identify the possible improvement in the efficiency of the additive manufacturing landscape, which could be obtained by having 3D printing equipment implement support for an industry standard way of affirming capabilities and receiving jobs.
 
Prior to the widespread use of PWG's IPP Everywhere™ standards, users had to install and constantly update software to their computers and other devices to print. Printer makers had to create, update and spread a stream of driver updates. IPP Everywhere supplies a single universal driver, and the group is running to port the same capabilities to 3D printing.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Robonaut and Astrobee Will Work Together on Space Station

May 17, 2019
Robonaut and Astrobee Will Work Together on Space Station
View Full Size
NASA has two robots that will, hopefully, be working on the International Space Station (ISS) this year. There’s Robonaut, a humanoid (complete with legs) that will be on its way up there later this year, as well as Astrobee, a family of three free-flying robotic cubes that are already on the ISS as of a couple of weeks ago.
 
Astrobee and Robonaut are completely different in both form and function, but that just means that they have skills and abilities that complement each other, and the teams running on these robots have been getting plans for on-orbit teamwork. To learn more about this collaboration, we spoke to Astrobee technical lead Trey Smith and Robonaut project manager Julia Badger.
 
From the voice of things, once both Astrobee and Robonaut have been verified out on-station, these collaborative tasks will be a fairly extreme priority. And since the robots have a great amount of autonomy, requiring minimal crew tending, we’re optimistic that it’ll actually take place sooner rather than later. Hopefully, NASA will hold us up to date on how things go — and if they don’t, we’re totally ready to visit the ISS in person just to see what’s up.
 



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Cementex Announces Hiring of New Regional Manager

May 16, 2019
Cementex Announces Hiring of New Regional Manager
View Full Size
Burlington, NJ - Cementex, the safety tool specialists, announces that the company has hired Dwayne Somers as the new Regional Manager for the Western U.S. Somers, based out of Phoenix, AZ, will support to give people with crucial information about the company's industry-leading safety tools.
 
Somers has an extended history in sales and customer service, including in the telecommunications industry. Working alongside Franko Gregory, the Cementex marketing manager for the Eastern U.S., Somers will work with Cementex experts, representatives, and customers to provide detailed product knowledge, technical support, and specialty solutions for clients within the Western Regions. He will also function with customers around compliance with insulated hand tools and ARC Flash PPE.
 
All Cementex products are made in the U.S.A. to the greatest standards of quality. For more information about Cementex's industry-leading products, visit our online catalog.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Start Now: Profiting From the Digital Twin Can Take Time

May 16, 2019
Start Now: Profiting From the Digital Twin Can Take Time
View Full Size
The concept of the Digital Twin is still increasing but it is powerful and self-evident enough that most manufacturers believe that they need it. Leading organizations anticipate that digital twins will help them deliver better products, services, and experiences to their customers, at lower costs than are currently possible. As digital replicas of physical (or cyber-physical) products, digital twins should act as crystal balls allowing engineering teams to understand how their products will operate and respond to real-world use and abuse, long before that information is needed. 
 
As manufacturers move from selling products to increasingly offering product-based services, the lifespan and total lifecycle costs of their devices become more important. If you can produce less expensively, then naturally your profit margins are higher. And here is the key to using a digital twin to improve your competitive position.
 
Remember you have time and resources to devote to this. Just before moving to choose a digital twin methodology in your company, it’s a good idea to ensure that you have a complete understanding of what it might look like.
 
At its heart, a digital twin a mathematical model, and the “digital” part of the name means that this mathematical model is represented in binary form, which can be calculated and manipulated by computers. But a model for what purpose? There are many kinds of models, and most people think of 3D models first. A 3D geometric model is a good start and an important foundation for the digital twin.
 
But to be truly useful, the digital twin should express other aspects of the physical artifact—like behavior. Digital twins could include models of materials, coatings, embedded software, embedded control systems, power sources, internal chemical reactions, reactions to environmental conditions (such as temperature, electrical fields, weather, etc.), and a lot more. All of these aspects of behavior bundle to recreate the real-world behavior of the physical device.
 
There is one more wrinkle that digital twins (can) consider: the singularity of each physical instance. The old wives’ tale claims that you should not buy a car built on a Monday or a Friday due to manufacturing workers produce poor quality results at the beginning and end of a week. Although I am confident that it's not true, it is a reminder that serial number 1 and serial number 100 of a product are built in a different way, perhaps by different people under different conditions.
 
Digital twins incorporate not merely virtual modeling of the theoretical performance of any particular serial number but come with the instance-specific details for individual physical products in the series. There is a distinctive digital twin for every serial number that rolls off the manufacturing line. Because of this, all of the data collected during manufacturing (temperature was low on the paint-baking machine that day), and all of the data collected by the device during its use (IoT sensors) combine to enhance the picture we have of that particular instance of the product.
 
Each single digital twin consists of the relevant details of that specific physical instance and can estimate its unique behavior responding to changing environmental and user-driven conditions in the future. That assumes that we have put the perfect capabilities in place to capture, track and manage this information.
 
Many of the capabilities mentioned so far exist today. You will discover software tools for 3D modeling, control system modeling, static/dynamic analysis, chemical reaction modeling, fatigue analysis, IoT data capture, manufacturing execution (IIoT) data capture, and much more. But what is the system that brings all of that data together in a significant way, so that you can ask questions and run scenarios? That system is what does not exist. Let’s give some thought to for a moment how we might build this digital twin system.
 
If we start out with systems modeling, 3D modeling and some basic finite-element analysis models, we can create a Virtual Twin that is a good foundation for digital twins. To connect, configure, control and manage all of these models, we need a system like PLM (Product Lifecycle Management). To dive much closer into your virtual twin’s capabilities, you might add things like control system modeling with Hardware-in-the-Loop test capabilities, MDAO (Multi-Discipline Analysis & Optimization) tools, and FMI (Functional Mockup Interface) capabilities.
 
Somewhere along the route, you will likely choose to maximize your product definition data and come to be more of a Model Based Enterprise (MBE). This activity may lag a bit, but proceed in parallel with a PLM system deployment.
 
Integration with ERP/MRP/MES is another important step to establish a bridge from the virtual to the physical. Presuming you actually have a modern, robust MES system in place, integrating this data back through ERP/MRP and into your virtual models to deliver enhanced analysis results is a great phase. At this point, your first digital twins will start rolling off the line at the same time as their physical counterparts.
 
Many companies today are hectic learning how they will increase IoT sensors, what data they will capture, and how they will use that data for understanding how their products behave during real-world usage. Assuming an IoT project like that has already been ongoing and proceeding in parallel with all of the activities above, your initial digital twins can be enhanced to track and update along with your products out in the field.
 
If your business is hoping to pin into selling products-as-a-service, or you just understand the long view of serviceability (and profitability), then it’s time to begin laying the foundation of your digital twin factory—today.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

People Power - the Driving Force of the Fourth Industrial Revolution

May 16, 2019
People Power - the Driving Force of the Fourth Industrial Revolution
View Full Size
The technology that is powering the fourth industrial revolution is widely available now and the value is clear - sensor and automation technologies are bringing new opportunities to update brownfield manufacturing sites across sectors and geographies across the world. Yet, many manufacturers are fighting to fully integrate the technology of the fourth industrial revolution more fully into their organizations: 70 percent of those who have introduced the technologies are finding themselves stuck in ‘pilot purgatory’, a regrettable state in which companies keep launching pilots, but aren't able to scale up across a single location - let alone an entire organization.
 
If many media reports are to be believed, these technologies are soon to take over fully, and the world’s workforce have to have to make way for robot overlords. The future is a grim, people-free workplace, with fully automated, AI-driven lights-out facilities.
 
The reality shows a different picture. Successful technology implementations at manufacturing sites are not typically designed to replace workers, rather, give them new capabilities and tools. While our research shows that many manufacturing processes can be automated - as much 90 percent by 2030 - this is the automation of tasks, not jobs, freeing up the workforce to focus on innovation and tasks that require dynamic decision-making skills.
 
Perhaps the fear endure mainly because there are so few examples being shared of how technology adoption is actually taking place in industrial sites. With this in mind, a collaborative research effort was launched between McKinsey and the World Economic Forum to survey 1,000 multinational manufacturing sites around the globe. We sought sites so advanced in their use of technology, analytics, and, yes, robots that they could stand out as beacons among their industry peers. We found 16 - the “Lighthouse sites” of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) in manufacturing.
 
While this number is small, the value created with technology is outperforming industry benchmarks with overall productivity increases up to 160 percent, and they are illuminating a common path to open up these gains. In the spirit of collaboration and partnership with the WEF, these sites opened their doors to share what they know.
 
What arises from the lighthouse examples are the shared values of enhancing the operator and democratizing technology. Schneider Electric - a lighthouse site based in France - is giving employees the chance to make their own solutions on the shop floor. This collaborative effort resulted in the fast adoption of the new technologies, with a focus on benchmarking and analysis to drive improvements. Likewise, Proctor & Gamble created a smart lab complete with demos of digital technologies and invited all of their operators and employees to see. There, they asked their employees to consider what problems automation could solve and identify opportunities the technology might give them to boost productivity.
 
Today’s innovative production tools and new ways of working have the potential to reframe careers in manufacturing. In contrast to dirty, dull, and dangerous, working at a manufacturing site can now turn to be a day spent on innovation and real-time problem-solving. This would not be the first time that a leap in manufacturing know-how led to a better use of human creativity. When Toyota’s lean production system principles swept across both the manufacturing and service sectors, the companies that were able to replicate the secret sauce did so by giving more responsibility to their front-line teams.
 
And therefore, in this current period of transition, we see a similar recipe for success - and a focus on reskilling. Tata Steel’s Dutch plant recognized that building the capabilities of great numbers of people was crucial in its digital transformation. Rather than hire an army of new data experts, it empowered its skilled workers with new tools - new sources of data at their fingertips for decision making. Tata created the Advanced Analytics Academy to pair theoretical background and practical work, and have trained over 200 engineers, translators, and data scientists.
 
The first-mover lighthouse organizations are already well on their way to delivering significant jumps in productivity, and they are setting a new standard for an engaged workforce and job satisfaction. By empowering and reskilling their workforce, they create new economic and societal value, and are on the cusp of capturing the huge potential value available from 4IR technology. To build on the success of these frontrunners, the time for action by other manufacturers is now. And the key to that success will be their people.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

Marketing in Manufacturing: Give It a Real Try

May 16, 2019
Marketing in Manufacturing: Give It a Real Try
View Full Size
What is the aim of marketing in manufacturing? Many companies do not have a product that they can sell through the click of some advertisement because there are just too many specifications involved — so why even spend the money to set up the ad? These sentiments are shared by the manufacturing industry as whole and mostly by those that might own or are working for a smaller manufacturer with limited resources. The concept of spending money to make money doesn't hold up with the generations of salesmen who drove coast to coast — in their own vehicles — to close deals on their latest product. The idea of using SEO, website analytics, conversion rates, and click-throughs to find the right customer seems unnecessarily challenging when you can go back to cold calling and talking to a “real person”.
 
I am here to share; however, the odds are not in your favor by keeping in line with the old “door to door” sales tactic and I will share why. Firstly, we are a global marketplace. The internet and the size of the supply chain have made selling your goods quite a bit hard. You have a much larger competition pool than you did in the past and it's not possible to be everywhere by driving. Secondly, your customer has changed. You don't know the buyer through a handshake but alternatively through an order in an automated system where they can see product reviews immediately and up-to-the-minute pricing for their project. They are now an entry in your database (if you have one of those). Sales initiatives do not get those customers in the door the way they used too nonetheless the combination of good sales and a solid marketing campaign can.
 
There are various ways that your company can market. From traditional print advertisements to software-driven tools across many online platforms, you can basically put your company’s name anywhere you want. However, this is not just enough to be a success. You really need to have a plan that works within your company’s long-range plan and the customers you like to entice. For manufacturers, this might mean that you need to sit a while and produce a real marketing strategy and put some real resources towards it. This can mean personnel and money. Have you talked about this with your team yet?
 
Time is considered the biggest hurdle for manufacturers regarding marketing. Many companies won’t market because they don’t know where to begin or how to proceed and they don’t have the time to figure it out. Maybe they have the money, but they don’t have a subject matter expert. That is okay! The truth is, outsourcing business marketing is a very popular alternative to hiring someone in-house. The first step is just acknowledging what you need and then looking for the company that will best represent you in the public’s eye to build your brand awareness.
 
If you are unsure about whether you should allocate resources towards a marketing budget, just do your research. Get started with looking at what your competitor does and then see where you want to go from there.  If you have uttered the words “We have our customer base already and we are perfectly happy where are at,” then this article is exactly for you. You may feel wonderful where you are at, but while you sleep at night dreaming that things will stay the same, your competitor is putting effort towards getting their name out in front of your customer. Over time, when prices change, or the product needs to adjust, your customer will always be looking, what company name or logo do you want them to consistently see?
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

Manufacturing Survey: Choose the Right Technology

May 16, 2019
Manufacturing Survey: Choose the Right Technology
View Full Size
Today’s manufacturers are overrun with technology innovations. From the showy wearables displayed at CES to the foundational technologies that underpin smart factories, there are numerous ways manufacturers can choose to move toward a future where their operations run more easily, efficiently, and beneficially.
 
However, given the options, it can be tricky to find out where to start. Such as, how should manufacturers qualify technology investments? What characteristics should they look for? And will today’s choices still serve their needs both today and in the future?
 
With a fast-moving industry, it is important to remain on top of trends and opportunities. That’s why we study hundreds of manufacturers year after year to understand what they’re investing in, what is making the biggest impact, and how companies plan to use technology to enhance their competitive differentiators.
 
Consider the following findings from this year’s annual State of Manufacturing Technology Report on future technology plans and purchases.
 
Solving Tomorrow’s Challenges
 
When looking at technology use, it is crucial to first discover the external factors currently impacting manufacturers, and how they could be affecting the buying and implementing process. While the industry has generally been growing for the past couple of years, there are looming concerns about the skilled worker shortage. It was the No. 1 concern of this year’s research participants and highlights that inspite of market growth, there's a challenge ahead of us to fill those positions. Other external concerns included the potential impact tariffs will have on the industry, as well as lower-priced competitors.
 
I've heard from manufacturers firsthand who have a lot of orders coming in they are extending delivery times, being forced to raise prices, or in some cases even turning work down. While a booming economy is good in several aspects, it also creates additional pressure on manufacturers to get the right workers, improve their processes, and reduce inefficiencies all while meeting their customers’ needs.
 
Regardless of the challenges, the manufacturers we surveyed in general felt optimistic about their futures—55 percent of respondents are confident in their company’s projected growth over the next 12 months.
 
Technology: A Pragmatic Problem-Solver
 
We know through our work with thousands of manufacturing professionals all over the world that leaders normally don’t invest in technology simply because it’s new or part of a big trend. Technology must have a direct and quantifiable impact on the company’s ability to work successfully. Future technologies not quite yet proven in smaller to mid-sized production environments are probably to not be adopted as fast. The survey data reflects this as well: Consistent with past years, this segment is not as likely to take on more recent innovations such as wearables, artificial intelligence, and blockchain. It doesn’t mean that these technologies won’t eventually have a role in manufacturing operations, but does validate the pragmatism of many manufacturing industry leaders in regards to business investments.
 
The technology that manufacturers are most satisfied with is management dashboards (one-third use these today) and sales analytics for management insight (at 67 percent). One of the fastest-growing technology segments is analytics: the use of analytics in operations is expected to grow 20 percent in the next five years.
 
Analytics hold the real key to allowing manufacturers to generate operational data for more control and visibility across the organization. As more manufacturers see that “big data” isn’t just as much about building a massive predictive analytics system but more about tapping into machine, sensor, and tool data to make decisions about optimizing production, we believe the cloud to play a pivotal role in building the necessary connectivity to accomplish this.
 
As the pressure to fill open jobs to meet customer demand intensifies, manufacturers are seeing the chance to look inside the organization to make changes to business processes and free workers from repetitive tasks. Tasks like manual cycle counting, inventory management, software/server maintenance, or running business and production reports can be controlled in a more effective and efficient way. Technology like the cloud makes employees to undertake higher-value work, as well as give them access to information that helps them do their jobs better.
 
Creating a Framework for Future Success
 
When we started to analyze what sorts of technologies made the biggest impact today, and which had staying power when manufacturers share their five-year investment plans, we noticed a few commonalities: Technologies that helped make the biggest operational improvements were automated, integrated, and connected.
 
Some technologies more readily support this strategy — such as big investments in a manufacturing system of record, and cloud technologies that smoothly integrate APIs with other business processes and systems — but others, such as for instance analytics and IIoT initiatives, could be layered onto existing systems to pull, synthesize and contextualize relevant information.
 
This also aligns with the future goals of most manufacturers surveyed: 60 percent of manufacturers planning to make use of technology to maximize plant floor integration and automation; 48 percent intending to raise business process automation; and another third working to both increase plant/enterprise integration and increase supply chain connectivity.
 
Next-Generation Manufacturing Technology Separates Leaders from the Rest
 
It’s clear that manufacturers view technology as an effective way to manage and overcome industry challenges. When next-generation technology is focused on enabling the core functions of a manufacturing business, manufacturers believe it separates the leaders from the followers (76 percent agree).
 
As a final point, if we were to distill one thing from this year’s survey, it’s this: There are multiple paths to building a manufacturing business of the future, but organizations should choose their next steps wisely.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

VF Automated Machine Safety Door

May 16, 2019
VF Automated Machine Safety Door
View Full Size
Dynatect’s Gortite® VF Automated Machine Safety Door can boost productivity while making your methods safer. It’s expected to safely isolate risky operations from other industrial processes, material, equipment, and people, while still letting access to it. The door is fitted in conjunction with existing machine guard panels on each side of the door to enhance the separation of environments further.
 
This high-speed industrial roll-up door is designed to reduce cycle time and maximize production in industrial environments. It pleases the need of both an automated roll-up door as well as a high-speed industrial door, but with an application emphasis on it being used as secure barrier in automated processes. The door is prepared with a traveling photoeye sensor, that can bring the door to a full stop in a matter of seconds.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

DSM and Origin announce partnership

May 16, 2019
DSM and Origin announce partnership
View Full Size
Geleen, The Netherlands / San Francisco, CA, USA, 15 May 2019 - Royal DSM, a global science-based company in Nutrition, Health and Sustainable Living, today announced it is moving in a partnership with Origin, the San Francisco-based pioneer in Open Additive Manufacturing. DSM and Origin will work along to establish new materials for additive manufacturing and explore new applications.
 
The companies have been working along for months to optimize DSM's unique photopolymer material for Origin's ‘programmable photopolymerization' (P3) technology. At the upcoming RAPID+TCT conference in Detroit, Origin's printer and production system and DSM's first optimized material will be on display at their respective booths.
The partnership with Origin is another step forward in DSM's constant commitment to build a global 3D printing ecosystem. DSM and Origin believe having an ecosystem is the best way to accelerate adoption and growth of the additive manufacturing industry. Both companies have been working to optimize DSM's materials for Origin's platform. Somos® PerFORM HW will be the first DSM material to join the Origin line-up.
Somos® PerFORM HW as optimized for Origin's printer will share the properties of Somos® PerFORM that have made it the material of choice for applications that require strong, stiff, and high temperature resistant parts, such as aerodynamic modeling and potentially rapid tooling.
'The quality and surface finish we're seeing with Somos® PerFORM HW on Origin's P3 process are outstanding and unparalleled,' says Noud Steffens, Market Development Director Additive Manufacturing at DSM. 'Origin supplies an unprecedented degree of control so users can get frequent commercial-grade results using Somos® PerFORM HW and soon other DSM materials.'
'We're thrilled that DSM is joining our open network of material partners and extending the potential applications available to our users,' adds Chris Prucha, Origin's CEO and co-founder. 'DSM is the market leader in world class photopolymers with decades of experience developing special photo-reactive chemistries. Together we are addressing today's manufacturing problems for customers.'
At the upcoming RAPID+TCT tradeshow in Detroit, Origin's printer and Somos® PerFORM HW will both be on display at their booths - DSM booth #303, Origin #2153. DSM's optimized Somos® PerFORM HW will be available for sampling at the time of the commercial launch of Origin's printer. Additional materials will become available for Origin's platform in the coming months. Both partners want to continue working together closely to search for new applications and improve materials to better meet customers' needs.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Physik Instrumente to host free precision automation conference

May 16, 2019
Physik Instrumente to host free precision automation conference
View Full Size
Physik Instrumente (PI) has issued an open invitation to leading technology organizations concentrated on consistency automation to visit a free conference entitled Precision automation for the future, improving speed, accuracy and throughput.
 
The one-day event, taking place at PI's Cranfield office on the 5th of June 2019, and repeated on the 6th, will give delegates the opportunity to learn from key opinion leaders in the industry and network over lunch with like-minded individuals working in the market.
 
The claim for automation solutions that present increased precision, productivity and quality in manufacturing processes is growing. Close harmony between the mechanics, control architecture and peripheral devices is essential for optimized speed, accuracy and repeatability in applications where multi-axis precision motion is fundamental. Operating real-time networks, using sophisticated control algorithms, and optimizing confusing technical designs, are just some of the things that require to be thought about. This event will explore many aspects of precision automation, using case studies and practical demonstrations to show what is possible today, as well as discussing future applications of the technology.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

Sensata¡¯s Slim 22.5mm Hybrid Motor Starters Extend Motor Life and Save Space

May 16, 2019
Sensata¡¯s Slim 22.5mm Hybrid Motor Starters Extend Motor Life and Save Space
View Full Size
SWINDON, United Kingdom, May 15, 2019 - Expanding on its extensive product line for motion control applications, Sensata Technologies (NYSE:ST) today introduced the Crydom DRMS Series hybrid motor starters.
 
These new hybrid starters integrate the benefits of both solid state and electromechanical relay technologies to make a compact device that can control electrical power supply to motors as large as 4kW. Suitable applications range from access control, packaging equipment, lifts and escalators to industrial process control and machine tooling systems.
 
Unlike some motor starters of similar size, the DRMS Series supplies features such as soft start, soft stop and an internal mains disconnect relay in case of a fault. The starter's soft start/soft stop function allows for the steady increase or decrease of power control, thereby stretching motor life.
 
Built-in overload protection reduces the extra cost and space otherwise needed for an additional overload relay. Other performance characteristics include forward/reverse, adjustable settings for starting/deceleration torque, starting/deceleration ramp, nominal motor current and a convenient reset button on the front of the unit for external manual reset.
 
The compact 22 mm wide DIN Rail mount motor starter package features an output rating of 9 Amps at 480 VAC, 24 VDC control voltage and four easy-to-see LED status indicators.
 
Complementing Sensata's existing DIN Rail solid state contactors with more functions and similar ratings, the DMRS Series provides customers with a broader range of solutions for motion control.



This article is originally posted on Tronserve.com

How Manufacturing Companies Can Be Strategic in Their Use of Engagement Initiatives

May 15, 2019
How Manufacturing Companies Can Be Strategic in Their Use of Engagement Initiatives
View Full Size
Executives in the manufacturing industry understand that engaging employees is imperative. The fact is, across all trades, organizations are investing $18 billion on tools to bolster employee engagement, yet the return on these investments is unclear. According to Gallup’s State of the Workplace report, only 25 percent of manufacturing workers are engaged at work. It is the very least engaged occupation across the United States and is a full eight percentage points lower than the national average for employee engagement.
 
Research has shown that some of the most commonly-used employee engagement initiatives are not as engaging as they could be. Like for example, service award recognition and company-wide physical fitness challenges are limited in their scope and impact. In a similar way, if your company emphasizes work-life balance or compensation packages as the end-all for engaging employees, you’ve just hit the tip of the iceberg.
 
Think Beyond Traditional Initiatives
 
With the fast-paced shift to automation within the manufacturing industry, luring and holding skilled workers has never been more vital. This is the result of multiple factors, including the looming knowledge shortage resulting from retirement of skilled workers as well as a highly competitive labor market where potential and current employees are more likely to leave if they are remotely unhappy in their positions. Now more than ever, it’s crucial to adopt a deeper and more dynamic approach to engagement to keep your best employees satisfied, and loyal to your organization.
 
Understand What Drives Employee Engagement
 
While engagement has been studied for years, research from Deloitte reports that just 22 percent of executives actually believe they have created an excellent and differentiated employee experience brand. So, if so many people are at a loss, what actually engages and retains employees? A recent study conducted by market research and strategy firm Chadwick Martin Bailey (CMB) sought to answer that question. Their findings reveal that there are five types of psychological benefits that, when nurtured at the organization level, drive employee engagement and retention:
•             Personal identity benefits
•             Social identity benefits
•             Cultural identity benefits
•             Functional benefits
•             Emotional benefits
 
In its study, CMB reported that personal, social and cultural identity benefits are specifically effective at engaging employees. These three forms of benefits foster workers’ sense of pride, self-esteem and belonging. Initiatives that were found to mainly affect these psychological benefits would be recognition and incentive programs, company communications, and employee events.
 
Many times, organizations have focused their efforts on functional benefits – initiatives like compensation, benefits and perks like free food or convenience services. Surprisingly, the research found that functional benefits are relevant, especially for drawing in talent. However, they only explain about 50 percent of why an employee would really stay with the organization. Manufacturing companies can learn from the study’s results that they should certainly not stop at functional benefits when looking to genuinely inspire engagement in the workplace. Rather, employers should focus on tailoring engagement initiatives to attend to each of these psychological benefits to create deeper, more meaningful connections with their employees. Invoking these types of positive feelings in your employees creates longer-lasting satisfaction and also means that your workforce will be more likely to advocate for your organization.
 
Start with Gaining an Understanding of Where You Are – and Where You Want to Be
 
Defining your organization’s unique engagement strategy should always start with research, especially among your existing employees. By asking for their feedback, you can attain perception in to your areas of strength as well as opportunities for the future. You may be pleased at the wide range of responses you receive.
 
By providing employees with the best opportunities and programs to feel supported, engaged and connected to the company, your organization can better:
•             Attract strong talent and retain top performers;
•             Embrace a positive company culture;
•             Improve interactions with customers; and
•             Boost employee engagement and fuel employee-driven advocacy.
 
Create Connection with Shared Purpose and Brand Messages
 
Consider this: when your employees order a new personal vehicle, they instantly become part of the manufacturer’s and dealer’s inner circle. They'll receive personalized emails, phone calls, and special offers. These little connections allow manufacturers to encourage their consumers to turn into repeat shoppers and advocates for their brand. Your employees are eager to feel this same sense of connection with your company, too.
 
Thus, to optimize employee engagement, just how you explain and promote the work you do for your employees must be shared in a way that emphasizes this sense of community, aligns with your overarching brand and reinforces a shared purpose across all employees. Doing this ensures that you can achieve the following:
•             Instill a strong sense of purpose in your employees and a sense of pride in the company;
•             Enhance employees’ sense of belonging to your company and your company culture; and
•             Drive positive emotional experiences.
 
Taking the time to tailor your engagement strategy to your unique workforce will differentiate your organization from the others you compete with in the increasingly competitive and volatile manufacturing labor market.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

Additive Manufacturing and Its Impact on a $12 Trillion Industry

May 15, 2019
Additive Manufacturing and Its Impact on a $12 Trillion Industry
View Full Size
Additive manufacturing is significantly changing the manner by which products are made. What is additive manufacturing? It’s a process that creates a physical object from a digital design using 3D printing technology. Additive manufacturing adds material, layer upon layer, to develop a finished product—from a pair of sports shoes to NASA rocket parts.
 
It is prepared to play a huge role in the future of manufacturing.
 
Additive manufacturing goes an incredible step beyond traditional manufacturing methods. It’s perfect for using more complex designs and delivering dramatically better results via a simplified fabrication process. This gives manufacturers increased flexibility and speedier production times, which leads to real innovation. Manufacturers can make products that, until now, remained on the drawing board.
 
The promise of additive manufacturing is definitely fantastic. But the promise has been held back by the inability to scale. The question has always been: how do you use this technology to cost-effectively create not only one or two products but hundreds of thousands?
 
Executives in industrial manufacturing have long understood that 3D printing could save them billions of dollars in production, but they have faced substantial barriers to using 3D printing for large-scale production. But now, with additive manufacturing, it’s becoming possible to produce parts with a strength, speed, and scale similar to injection-molded parts—and do it more cheaply and efficiently.
 
Here are four game-changing advantages manufacturers will find when they implement additive manufacturing.
 
Operate on a level playing field. Additive manufacturing minimizes the barrier to entry and brings down production costs compared to traditional manufacturing methods. Take, by way of example, CNC [Computer Numerical Control] machining, which is a process used in the manufacturing sector that depends on computers to control machine tools. There is at present a universal shortage of programmers who can operate CNC machines. And, even when they can be found, skilled CNC programmers are very costly to hire, commanding annual salaries well over $100,000. This made it difficult for small manufacturers to compete with larger rivals.
 
On the other hand, additive manufacturing will not require the same level of skill. Because additive machines are less complex, they’re relatively simple to program and so inexpensive to operate in the long run. What’s more, with additive manufacturing you can program a part in California and have it sent to a factory across the country or on the other side of the world. That’s something very hard to do with other manufacturing methods, which generally require fixtures, tools, and materials to be on site.
 
But switching parts on a 3D printer can be achieved in a matter of minutes. This flexibility means you don’t need to waste time and money manufacturing spares. With traditional manufacturing, such as CNC or injection-molding jobs, you commonly run an extra 10 percent just in case some parts break or come out faulty. With additive manufacturing, you have the flexibility to simply print any extra parts at the exact time you need them.
 
Quickly respond to demand spikes. Whether you make consumer electronics or basketball shoes, you just don't know when a huge spike in demand will suddenly hit. And with traditional manufacturing methods, it’s really hard to quickly capitalize on that opportunity. For starters, most manufacturing supply chains are long and convoluted, which makes it hard to turn on a dime and instantly ramp up production.
 
But additive manufacturing, with its lower tooling requirements, places less strain on the supply chain. So, the time it takes to go from design to customer delivery is much shorter, meaning you can get your products to market faster and in the hands of customers more easily.
 
Deliver greater customization. Consumers significantly want custom-made products that meet their personal lifestyles. The elimination of tooling that comes with additive manufacturing also means that companies can produce more customized parts faster and at lower costs. Additive manufacturing makes it possible to cater more accurately to the demands of modern consumers, thanks to its support for low-volume production batches of customized parts and products.
 
Take, case in point, a special-edition automobile or custom features within that car. It's now possible to cost-effectively print parts in low volumes for these niche vehicles and give customers exactly what they want.
 
The next generation of additive manufacturing innovation is poised for fast adoption as companies strive to cut lead times and respond a lot faster to customer needs. It is only a point of time before the world of manufacturing and the products it creates is completely transformed for the better.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

5 Ways to Tell If Your Supply Chain Is Fully Reinvented for the Transformative Age

May 15, 2019
5 Ways to Tell If Your Supply Chain Is Fully Reinvented for the Transformative Age
View Full Size
You’ve been hearing about “the supply chain of the future” for a long time. How it will provide end-to-end visibility. How it will self-manage customer inventories. How it will need only two employees, a man, and a dog: the man to feed the dog; the dog to prevent the man from touching anything.
 
And now, in the Transformative Age, such a state-of-the-future supply chain has become really relevant. Disruptive technologies such as for instance machine learning, the Internet of Things and blockchain are leading to super-fluid markets: fast moving, fast changing and frictionless.
 
To thrive in this system, companies need supply chains that operate as holistic ecosystems. And you can have that now — we can finally deliver what we’ve been talking about for years.
 
So if you are planning a reinvention of your supply chain, here are five criteria for gauging whether it is (or will be) the future-ready supply chain you need.
 
It’s Agile
 
Agility starts by aligning business strategy and supply chain strategy. The supply chain must be able to support the agility requirements of your business, with adjustment for everything from evolving customer needs to changing constraints on the supply side. It’s all about immediacy, responsiveness and hyper-accurate anticipation.
 
This requires unprecedented levels of change, including:
 
-Data analytics-fueled supply chain segmentation based on various customer groups
-Operating-model change so the organization can fulfill new business models while responding at the speed of changing marketplace conditions
-A supply chain intelligence layer that guides and enhances the actual performance of the supply chain in real time
 
It’s Cognitive
 
The intelligence layer for supply chains is a mosaic of advanced technologies. But it requires a lot more than adding machine learning, blockchain or additive manufacturing (3D printing). It’s about orchestrating emerging technologies and members of your ecosystem to move in lockstep. And then putting it all under the watchful eye of an end-to-end “control tower” that encompasses everything from planning and supply through logistics and customer service — to offer stellar exception-based or event-based management.
 
When your supply chain is cognitive and draws on the power of the ecosystem, it reveals correlations that no human can see. And it learns tremendously. This is what can create the delta in between you and your competitors.
 
It’s Autonomous
 
Imagine this scenario. A hurricane strikes the southeastern US. It knocks out critical suppliers and it devastates your transit hub. What do you do? With an autonomous supply chain, you watch it do what has to be done — immediately. It acts on real-time data. It quickly puts orders through to your hierarchy of backup suppliers and to dispatch, and to your network of warehouses. There is not much of a blip in downtime in your operations.
 
Or suppose that there’s an abrupt spike in customer demand. How do you scale? “You” don’t have to: everyone in the supply chain sees the spike at the same time and can work on it all at one time. It’s coordinated through a communications network that automatically updates the whole ecosystem to ensure everyone knows how each player is responding and can adapt as needed.
 
A new tariff is announced? Your supply chain readjusts for tax optimization. A sudden exception occurs? Your supply chain might even reach out to a competitor to provide a mutually beneficial response since it enables hybrid forms of cooperation and competition as different entities in market networks play multiple roles in an ecosystem. And it all runs on auto-pilot. After all, if we can have self-driving cars, why not “lights out” planning?
 
It’s Resilient
 
Resilience is an over-used term, but that does not make it any less worthwhile. The fully reinvented supply chain leverages risk intelligence and related mission-critical technologies to contain and avoid most sudden or fast-breaking disruptions, whether natural or man-made.
 
And the reaction is appropriate to the nature of the event, in both scale and resources tapped. The supply chain responds to operational impacts and will provide a quick return to normal functioning once a disruption is considered ended.
 
It’s Flexible
 
The global supply chain requires thinking outside of traditional talent pools. It must accommodate such disparate factors as labor-law regulations, cultural norms, virtual teaming and matrixed environments. This requires a business-as-unusual approach. You need a properly (and differently) trained, flexible, data-driven workforce, right from senior executives to the hourly associates.
 
It requires leaders who both realize and incorporate the “fail small/fail fast” ethos of innovation. Who create incentives to reward new, more productive behaviors. Who embody the tenets of agility, recognizing that cultural, generational and technological differences impact the way in which employees contribute to individual and collective success.
 
Yes, the entirely reinvented supply chain is both a product of, and catalyst for, all that. A supply chain built for the Transformative Age provides an immediate and compounding edge, enabling you to continually put distance between yourself and your competition.
 
This article is originally posted on tronserve.com

You have 0 items in you cart. Would you like to checkout now?
0 items
Switch to Mobile Version