“Connected Factories” Interview 6 (First published in Japanese in April, 2015)

  It is true that the introduction of ICT is very difficult for SMEs. One cause is that costs and effects cannot be estimated in advance, and the effects are often not worth the cost. Moreover, even if it is a mechanism that meets the cost, the bottleneck is that there are not enough human resources to actually promote ICT within the manufacturing industry.

  Looking at various examples, it seems that there are many cases where ICT conversion is just computerization or digitization of paper forms. If so, the first thing to do is to visualize the flow of information, not ICT . And if there is a part that has already been converted to data and systemized, it is the meaning of those data (from whom to whom and what to tell). In other words, I would like you to verify that the flow of manufacturing and the flow of work are connected properly and that there are no wastes or mistakes.

  And if there is an irrational or inefficient part, we recommend an approach that makes the information flow little by little by converting the part into ICT . Of course, this cannot be thrown out to ICT vendors or outside. However, the person in charge alone does not know what to do, so let’s start with a comprehensive inspection inside the company using external ICT personnel well. Probably everywhere, there should be a lot of ICT stories.

  In particular, what is important is visualization of the present and the near future, and the addition of value by accumulating and utilizing various data. The accumulation and utilization of various data will be explained because it is immediate and easy to use. For example, information such as process procedure and production condition memos, setup method photographs, customer inquiries, quotation presentation history, etc. is somewhere in the field, but there are many things that cannot be searched in the event of an emergency. . By making these data and searchable, on-site work becomes much easier and the level of service to customers is improved. Such data is a source of competitiveness as an asset.

  For the first time, the benefits and benefits of ICT will become pervasive within the company . This order is important , especially in the case of ICT , especially in the case of small and medium-sized enterprises, when rejection and resistance appear first, frustration, and once you experience such a failure, it becomes a major obstacle when you start again Become. In other words, ICT Daijodan that or, without excessive expectations, visualization of the current work, some of the extension of the improvement of the business ICT by making dissolve successfully, Manufacturing and in the truth of the meaning of ICT and I think fusion can be achieved.

  Last but not least, small and medium-sized manufacturers are based in a position where it is difficult to achieve economies of scale. However, in a world where ICT is used and connected factories are presupposed, it is a major player for global expansion. There will be no necessity, and there will be more opportunities for small and mid-sized companies and small and medium-sized manufacturers to play an active role. This is a great opportunity for a new leap in the times.

  In order to accurately capture large concepts and movements such as Industry 4.0, and at the same time create a flow that involves actual manufacturing sites, each individual and practical problem in each manufacturing industry must be addressed. It is also important to continue to resolve and to convey to the steady that the standardization and open approach is effective in the process.