Manufacturers need to think about long-term solutions that meet the full set of customer needs, says PPG executive Rebecca Liebert. "What is the solution that the customer is looking to have eventually, and then how do they move their product from a product to a solution, so the customer has the full solution they're looking for," she says.
The oil and gas sector can use a combination of new management approaches and digital technology to balance project capital costs and compete with renewables, according to this McKinsey & Co. analysis. "Product owners will need to lead the way: As the ultimate integrators of most projects, they are in a position to mandate standards, technologies, and working practices," the authors write.
A company culture that's resistant to change is the leading barrier for adopting additive manufacturing, followed by certification adherence and a lack of technical know-how, says Dave Dietrich of Honeywell Aerospace. Companies should ignore media hype and instead consider how to use AM from the design stage forward.
Supply chains can further save money and improve efficiencies with a zero-based approach, according to this McKinsey analysis. "Zero-basing typically starts by breaking costs into four crucial categories -- direct labor, indirect labor, warehouse and logistics, and materials (including yields) -- and builds a bottom-up view on the optimum cost base," the authors write.
Companies should establish use cases, be clear about responsibilities and consider whether they have the right tech support in place before investing in industrial internet of things edge computing, Stratus Technologies' John Fryer writes. "As with any IIoT implementation, it's crucial to plan for expected events and disruptions, allowing for you to enjoy the benefits of this new technology without a worry," he writes.
The second graduating class at the STEM Academy at Columbus High School in Nebraska is set to receive its diplomas in a matter of months. The school has used cutting-edge equipment to enhance its curricula in a number of areas, including automotive manufacturing and robotics.