Jack Welch is credited with saying: “When the rate of change inside an institution becomes slower than the rate of change outside, the end is in sight. The only question is when.” Does that sentiment ring true to you? It does to me, and it can be a rather sobering reality. Hang on to that thought for a moment.

An infographic from Visual Capitalist shows how long it has taken for now-common technologies to reach 50 million users. Some examples from their list are:

  • Automobiles: 62 years
  • Television: 22 years
  • ATMs: 18 years
  • Mobile Phones: 12 years
  • Internet: 7 years
  • Facebook: 3 years
  • Pokémon Go: 19 days (I have to admit that I missed this one…)

While I realize that the examples above might not be perfectly relevant for manufacturing, I think they do a good job of illustrating the ever-increasing pace of change in the modern world.

If you subscribe to Jack Welch’s thoughts about your organization’s need to keep up with the rate of change AND you believe that change is likely to continue to happen at an increasing rate, you can probably see a lot of work for your organization on the horizon.

In as much as we work with a wide variety of manufacturing and industrial clients, I can unfortunately observe that there is no panacea to address this. But I have a few suggestions for you as you try to stay ahead of the change curve.

Flexible Commercial Licensing Bundles

First, consider how you invest in and deploy software tools that help you run your facilities. Are you getting the maximum benefit out of the automation investments you’ve made as you grow and scale? Could your organization benefit from a commercial licensing strategy that unifies the products, as well as the data, you’ll need AND allows you the flexibility to redeem unused licenses for other tools in the portfolio as your strategy matures? Many times, large investments in plant or enterprise software deployments are sunk after the initial phase, and don’t provide the flexibility that an agile organization demands. Newer licensing models and cloud offerings can provide a major benefit here. Learn more.

Artificial Intelligence Infused Analytics

Second, consider how machine learning and artificial intelligence might help you make complex decisions faster, allowing you to leapfrog your competition. Would it be helpful to you if the mountain of process data you already collect could be used to predict something that’s critical to your operation so you can take steps to head off a future problem? Think of things like energy cost, production rate, first pass quality, cycle time, probability of an asset failure, or others. Tremendous strides have been made in the area in just a few short years. Here’s just three examples we work with:

If you are charged with maximizing your automation investment or accelerating your team’s decision making, then plan to join us for an upcoming 3-part webinar series where we’ll dive into these topics. Rapid change is upon us. Let us help you keep up.

Join our webcast on July 28 at 10 a.m. to learn more about the AVEVA Operations Control Bundle.