What AI could mean for modern manufacturers

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Now more than ever, manufacturers all around the world are being pushed to test the limits of their current capabilities as they weather multiple disruptive global events, like the COVID-19 pandemic and the war in Ukraine. 

These pressures only further emphasise the need for manufacturers to go above and beyond traditional boundaries and tap into the power of artificial intelligence, according to a recent report from the Turkiye Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. 

Developed in partnership with the World Economic Forum’s Network for Global Technology Governance, the “Unlocking Value from Artificial Intelligence in Manufacturing” report highlighted the need for businesses to further drive productivity in order to “uncover the next wave of value for businesses, the workforce, and the environment.”

Here are some beneficial capabilities manufacturers can access by adopting AI, according to the report:

Increased operational performance 

By automating tasks and optimising routine processes, businesses will be enabled to enhance productivity and operational efficiencies. Furthermore, through efficient forecasting of unwanted failures, manufacturers will be able to reduce defects and optimise production parameters, bolstering both material efficiency and sustainability. 

Automation can also lead to workforce augmentation— a result of well-guided decision-making that enhances the accuracy of predictions and forecasting, reducing repetitive tasks, all the while increasing human-robot interactions. 

Defining roadblocks in operations 

Among the other beneficial factors of embracing AI, the report also zeroed in on the importance of pinpointing the source of a company’s struggles in order to open a new path to think through and derive the right solutions. However, companies have not yet fully realised the vision of an AI-powered manufacturing system, the report noted. 

As the barriers to AI implementation are primarily caused by organisational, strategic, and technical components, understanding them can help determine a pathway towards implementing scalable AI applications. 

Unlocking a collection of AI applications 

In the era of modern manufacturing, AI has become one of the obvious solutions to boosting operational performance and achieving a positive impact on sustainability and workforce engagement. 

“Digital and AI can power a new era for continuous improvement in manufacturing beyond the traditional means of driving productivity, thereby unlocking additional value,” the report said. 

With a holistic approach, it is possible to uncover AI’s untapped potential in the global manufacturing space.