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Study Unveils US Manufacturer Digitization Progress Report

Adjusting technologies to today’s standards is a common issue for many industries. As one of the largest and perhaps most impacted areas, manufacturing has wrestled with implementing digitization.

On behalf of Siemens, London-based Longitude Research conducted a survey of 200 manufacturing executives to help determine where the U.S. manufacturing industry currently is with regards to digitization, including data intensity, connectivity, adaptability, integration, security and people.

There were two distinctive groups of U.S. manufacturers revealed: the efficiency experts and the revenue re-inventors. While efficiency experts are focused on pushing for more digital technology integration to get more work done in a shorter amount of time for less money, revenue reinventors seek to use digitizing to reinvent themselves and new products.

Among the top digital technologies used by U.S. manufacturers are cloud computing (85 percent), connected sensors in plants (65 percent), connected sensors in products (59 percent), 3-D printing (39 percent) and advanced data analytics tools (34 percent). Although these technologies are currently being used, it’s interesting to note that 38 percent of manufacturers admitted production data is three days or more old when analyzed, which likely presents a problem in today’s fast-paced arena.

Siemens’ president of its digital factory division, Raj Batra, commented on the study’s results and the importance of manufacturers moving forward with digitalization.

He said, “It’s probably not surprising to see mid-sized companies delay in embracing new technologies, but even Fortune 500 companies sometimes hesitate based on various barriers. Companies are aware that digitalization is driving industry forward and that it is essential in long-term strategy and planning to remain competitive in a global economy. Innovation and technology is available today that will enable a digital path to success.”

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