Industry 4.0 by itself does not make a Smart Factory – Study

February 10, 2015 | News Germany

The general euphoria about Industry 4.0 promises companies the solution to their complexity problems virtually at the touch of a button. The initially extolled German Industry 4.0 index shows however that, besides networking technology, efficient development and production processes are especially necessary in order to really enhance the indisputable potential of the intelligent factory. For this study, 140 industrial firms in Germany were surveyed by Staufen Management Consultancy. “At the moment, Industry 4.0 is often advertised misleadingly. It’s like using a high-performance engine in a middle class car in order to make a sports car out of it,” says Dr Ulrich Frenzel, Business Unit leader of the management consultancy Staufen AG. “Unfortunately in doing so, the fact is omitted that this power can only then be accessed if the gearbox, chassis and brakes have also first been customised accordingly.” According to the German Industry 4.0 index, almost 80 percent of companies expect the networked factory to bring them forward especially in terms of flexibility and adherence to schedules. It is obvious that this hope cannot be fulfilled through technical networking alone. So for example the strategic prioritisation of projects and products cannot be automated. And overcoming sometimes vigorously defended departmental barriers or transforming managers into communicative coaches is also not achieved as a result of workpieces and machines exchanging data with one another. “Companies, however, which have already reduced their processes in production, development and administration in the past years, have detected waste as a consequence and have established defect-free value streams, are on the way to Industry 4.0 often more than they themselves suspected,” according to Staufen consultant Frenzel. “A focus at this year’s Best Practice Day from Staufen AG at the beginning of June will be how this solid foundation can further be expanded for the next development step towards Smart Factory – in this context we like to talk about Lean meeting Industry 4.0.”

Best Practice Day 2015: The leading Lean Management congress in Europe At the Best Practice Day 2015 from 8 to 10 June 2015 in Darmstadt, companies and leading Lean Management experts will report about their experiences on the path to developing successful value creation systems. A focus this year: Industry 4.0 and Lean. For more information about the event, please visit: Press graphics for Industry 4.0 are available from:

Stay up to date

Subscribe to our newsletter
Staufen Back To Top Button