I often like to reference this quote from R “Ray” Wang, the founder and chairman of Silicon Valley-based Constellation Research, and an expert on manufacturing digital disruption. What he’s saying is: transform now or fall behind and I honestly feel that rings so true in this rapidly evolving digital age.
According to Forbes magazine, not since Henry Ford introduced mass production has there been a revolution to this scale. Now, manufacturing companies are using technology to move from mass production to customized production, and it’s happening at a rapid pace. While the majority of manufacturing executives acknowledge the importance of this transformation, only 5% of them are satisfied with their current digital strategies. The industry continues to evolve in response to the challenge of ensuring the right products are delivered at the right price to the right person through a process of improved sophistication.
Is your company one of the 95% that is unsatisfied with its current digital strategy? For many manufacturers, digital transformation means taking a giant leap from gut-driven to data-driven decision making. With data-driven decisions comes innovating new ways to go to market and streamlining the way you do business.
Meeting Disruptors Head-On
Another part of digital transformation is meeting new disruptors head-on. From 3-D printing to IoT, manufacturing is facing exciting changes. All parts of manufacturing—not just the factory floor—are changing: R&D, engineering, production, logistics, and marketing, sales and service. Connected business networks and connected services and experiences are changing the way manufacturers do business.
Manufacturers today care about integrated digital and physical systems, improved visibility, increased efficiency, additional flexibility, and lower costs. They want to connect equipment and factories, leveraging data from the factory floor to the customer call center to improve every aspect of their operations.
But this is just the beginning. Digitization is fundamentally changing the way manufacturers do business, enabling a customer-centric approach while optimizing operations. Digitally empowered manufacturers engage customers throughout the product lifecycle from design to field service. They sell value-add services to complement the product sales, opening new revenue streams and strengthening their customer relationships. And they are revolutionizing delivery of these differentiated services, using technology like augmented reality to combine the eyes of a technician in the field with the insights of an expert back at headquarters.
Capitalizing on these trends isn’t limited to large, well-resourced manufacturers. Across all kinds of manufacturing operations, the opportunity to digitize and transform your business has never been more accessible.
Digital Transformation with Microsoft Dynamics 365
For manufacturers, Microsoft Dynamics 365 ends the artificial divide between CRM and ERP systems and supplements necessary capabilities with rich analytics, embedded intelligence, and the convenience people expect from consumer apps on their phone or tablet. Dynamics 365 unites the front and back office with a single end-to-end system for managing every aspect of your business, at the pace and scale that’s right for you. Digital transformation isn’t accomplished overnight and leveraging current investments is a key component of any successful approach. With Microsoft, you can optimize across all your processes while laying the foundation for connecting advanced technology in the future.
Learn more about the competitive manufacturing landscape in our whitepaper, 9 Starting Points for Digital Transformation in Manufacturing for more information. Don’t miss part 2 of our manufacturing series: Four Ways to Optimize Inventory Management in a Digital Landscape.