The latest component of Industry 4.0, Robotic Process Automation (RPA), maybe be an unfamiliar concept now, but soon these three words will be on the lips of operators big and small all over the world. RPA is already generating substantial revenue savings for businesses, with $50 million recovered in 2017, with a projected compound annual growth rate of more than 60% through 2026. Coupling this emerging technology with a business-centric solution like ERP systems will ensure your workforce is free to engage in the more demanding aspects of your operations, all while automation handles the rest.
Non-alcoholic beverage manufacturers are finding their niche in the brewing world. With 5% market growth for low and non-alcoholic beer brewers recorded during 2015, things are looking up for suds without the buzz.
Granted these brews don’t typically appear at your local brewpub, but wholesalers and retailers are picking up these brands to serve a population that respects the flavor but doesn’t want a more holistic approach to their consumption habits. Because alcohol is associated with a myriad of health risks, global consumption of traditional beer has dropped over the last few years.
Virginia’s brewers and winemakers are exceptionally anxious following the recent discovery of an invasive species in Virginia that could potentially threaten hops and grape growing operations throughout the state.
The spotted lanternfly, a sap-eating insect like the large Aphid, first appeared in the state early last month. Native to Asia and notoriously good at stowing away. It is suspected the potential nuisance arrived on a shipment of construction materials from China. In recent years the bug has been spotted in Pennsylvania and Delaware, which hasn’t done much to allay fears that the population is growing in number and reach.
When it comes to delivering on your stakeholders’ expectations, there is only one action that defines success in the world of commerce. That is getting the right products to the right customers at the right price. Completing the trifecta while keeping costs to a minimum and efficiency to a maximum are what manufacturers, distributors, and retailers strive for. In the case of many enterprises, only a quality ERP solution can tackle each of these challenges head-on.
The commerce ecosystem, whether it be in traditionally grounded retail or exclusively an online operation, is a delicate one that relies equally on manufacturers, suppliers, and retailers to deliver the product to customers the way they want it, when they want it. Order fulfillment is the key performance indicator that illustrates when these systems are operating in harmony and out of order.
Automation has experienced a substantial boom over the past several years and things are only gaining momentum. We couldn’t possibly cover all the latest updates and emerging trends, so here are the 10 we believe to be the most exciting emerging trends in automation for 2018.
1. Industrial Internet Of Things (IIoT) Technology Bringing Down Overhead
Lower cost and higher value products with the capability of connecting to existing infrastructure and relaying relevant performance data in real-time will continue to cut automation costs for operations, at scale. Higher-performance processors, detailed sensor equipment, more robust analytics software, ultra-precise vision systems, and cloud computing are only a few examples of IIoT tech that are shaking up automation in Industry 4.0.
For those unfamiliar with the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act, the recently passed tax reform applying to alcoholic beverage manufacturers, the short of it is that the legislation offers two years of heavy relief from federal excise taxes applied to one of the most severely taxed industries in the US. So, what are craft brewers, distillers, and vintners going to do with it? For most, the word is grow.
The tax breaks will translate into substantial annual savings for these craft beverage makers, between $20,000 and $100,000 to be more precise, and allow them to hire more staff, expand operations, and invest in marketing to build their brands.
Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) costs can cripple a manufacturer’s bottom line, especially when the required work compounds problems by impacting production to a significant degree. Implementing a dynamic ERP solution, like Epicor ERP, can address the issue before it becomes a problem. Through an effective mix of Quality Assurance and Asset Management modules, Epicor has built a powerful solution to specifically tackle the tasks associated with maintenance management, from Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) to multinational corporations.
A new industrial revolution, Industry 4.0, is blending automation and data exchange in ways that have never been possible before. The change has strengthened the concept of a “smart factory” that integrates cyber-physical systems, the Internet of things, cloud computing, and cognitive computing to create an increasingly cooperative relationship between man and machine throughout the manufacturing process.
Some fantastic developments regarding the future of employment in this new landscape were revealed in a report released last week by the Association of Advancing Automation (A3). The document detailed how automation and, more specifically, robots work to create increasingly valuable and necessary work roles, how the skills gap is being addressed at home and abroad, and how worker wages figure into the equation.
Your operations are scaling nicely at HQ, but coordinating with remote resources and even inter-departmentally in real-time is proving to be a significant hurdle. Most of your team is in-house, while any number of employees can be out on the road, on the manufacturing facility floor, or logging in remotely. However, you need everyone connected and on the same page to be functioning at 100%. A robust ERP system fro the likes of Epicor keeps everything in the pipeline and within arm’s reach, but you’ll be pinned to the desktop when making any significant maneuvers that rely on data from your ERP systems.
Manufacturers and distributors have access to data on a scale that has never existed before and the two are leveraging the insights gleaned from that access to pursue new innovations in automation and systems that are reshaping the face of these industries. Pairing innovations like these with a robust ERP solution is the most effective way to ensure your business is prepared to address emerging trends that can reshape your industry overnight.
First, there was industry 1.0, the emergence of mechanization, as well as water-, steam-, and fossil fuel-powered systems. This was followed by mass production of goods, assembly line manufacturing, and electricity powering it all in Industry 2.0. With 3.0 came computers and automation using robotics. Today, we’ve reached the next milestone in revolutionizing Industry. Connecting established trends and emerging technologies between automation and data exchange in manufacturing is Industry 4.0. Also referred to as the fourth industrial revolution, it is focused on bringing cyber-physical systems into the mainstream and placing them at the forefront of the manufacturing industry.