The Industry 4.0 Paradox

Achieving higher productivity with digitization and at the same time not taking innovations so seriously. Can that work? No, says Deloitte, recommending that companies reconsider their investment behaviour. It is not enough to just want to improve what's proven. This strategy leads to missed innovations. 

The Industry 4.0 Paradox

Achieving higher productivity with digitization and at the same time not taking innovations so seriously. Can that work? No, says Deloitte, recommending that companies reconsider their investment behaviour. It is not enough to just want to improve what's proven. This strategy leads to missed innovations. 

 

Venture the unknown 

Deloitte advises companies to venture into the unknown. In the consultants' opinion, it is not wrong to improve operational processes and increase productivity. Decision-makers should broaden their horizons and find out about the possibilities of investing in innovations. In many companies there is no evaluation of which fundamental innovations could be invested in. Those who do not take this to heart can quickly be overtaken by their competitors. A look at the markets shows that tools for the use of modern technology are in great demand. This is an indication that competitors are not asleep. 

 

Plan and implementation 

Deloitte's statements are the result of a survey. Worldwide, 361 managers from the manufacturing and energy sectors were surveyed. Although the employees showed great enthusiasm, the plan and implementation failed at four points, which are listed as four paradoxes in industry 4.0 in practice. 

 

The paradox in corporate strategy

It is paradoxical that 94 percent of respondents see digital transformation as a strategically important topic. But only 68 percent see the way to increased profitability in industry 4.0.

 

The supply chain paradox 

In terms of digital transformation, the supply chain is the most advanced. In practice, however, supply chain managers are left out.

 

Talent paradox

The respondents were confident that they had the right employees on board for Deloitte. Only 15 percent were of the opinion that the skills of the employees had to be "dramatically" improved. The managers are counting on "finding and training talents", because this is the "most important organizational and cultural challenge" for the companies.

 

The innovation paradox

The majority of respondents understand digital transformation to mean doing the same thing as before, but faster and better. From Deloitte's point of view, this is decidedly short-sighted. As an example of a lack of willingness to innovate, Deloitte cites the fact that the managers surveyed on this topic put productivity and the achievement of corporate goals first. Fulfilment of customer requirements is the third most important aspect. The desire for innovation is ranked sixth, with 23 percent of the respondents being in second place.

 

Looking to the future 

Deloitte has also described how companies can catch up with the fourth industrial revolution. It is important to fully utilize the ability of related assets to make informed decisions. Digital transformation is one way to drive growth.

However, there are a number of areas in which executives are not sure how to do this. This uncertainty is also evident when major investments are planned for the future. Managers have many opportunities to transform their departments into a networked company. This is necessary to be able to act effectively in a digital age. The task is to build networked and more intelligent operations that are also more responsive than previous tools. From the consultants' perspective, this is the path that expresses the promise of the fourth industrial revolution and leads to optimal digital transformation.

Date: 17 January 2019, 14:01 pm
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