The Power of Advanced Analytics in Manufacturing

Hitesh Soni and Vanessa Saulsberry contributed to this article

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12.3 Million. That’s how many workers the U.S. manufacturing industry employs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, accounting for almost 1/10th of the workforce. That’s a lot of jobs supporting growing families and businesses. Clearly, with the industry representing over 12 percent of the United States’ total GDP[i], manufacturing companies are a critical component to building a stronger economy.

Manufacturing leaders are facing some tough challenges and immense competition. The only way to stay competitive in this environment is through good old-fashioned innovation. Despite outspending global counterparts in R&D[ii], there are untapped opportunities hidden in the vast amounts of data manufacturers collect.

These opportunities include:

  • Improving the customer experience
  • Retaining top talent
  • Increasing employee engagement
  • Margin recovery
  • Enhancing product quality and safety
  • Boosting supplier and vendor relations
  • Improving efficiency on the plant floor

The possibilities and potential applications are endless. Indeed, IDC predicts that by 2020 the global Big Data and business analytics market will increase by $73 Billion[iii].

Over the last decade the complexities often associated with gathering and analyzing large volumes of data, including Big Data, IoT, and now IIoT, have dissipated. Modern data science and business intelligence tools go one step further, allowing department heads to serve up highly-visual, ad-hoc reports on their own, eliminating much of the heavy lifting by IT.

Manufacturing companies that embed predictive analytics can pry open new doors for additional insights regarding future outcomes. Suddenly, business leaders have transformed legacy systems into something far more valuable, unlocking greater ROI and influencing positive business impact.

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[i] Bureau of Economic Analysis, real value added by industry (accessed January 13, 2017) - https://fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R42135.pdf.
[ii] U.S. Manufacturing in International Perspective Marc Levinson Section Research Manager January 18, 2017
[iii] http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=IDC_P33195

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