German industry awards bad mark to politicians in respect of Industry 4.0 – Survey

October 30, 2014 | News Germany

Eight out of ten companies in Germany feel abandoned by the political establishment with regard to the future-oriented topic of Industry 4.0. As the first ever compilation of the “German Industry 4.0 Index” also shows, one in ten companies even rate the attitude of politicians towards new key technologies as “counter-productive”. For this study, 140 industrial firms were surveyed for the Staufen management consultancy. “The index confirms our practical experience from within the companies that too little support arrives at the economic basis despite politicians’ general commitment to Industry 4.0,” explains Dr Ulrich Frenzel, Business Unit Director at the Staufen AG consultancy. “A typical example is the continued absence of standards for data transfers in industry which fall within the remit of the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI).” Professional associations such as the VDMA already warn that because of such delays Germany may not be able to call upon it full Industry 4.0 potential in the future. This feeble commitment by politicians and administrators is somewhat surprising. As Staufen consultant Frenzel points out: “Defending the current pole position in terms of Industry 4.0 will be crucial with regard to whether the skilled jobs required in this context will continue to be generated in great numbers in Germany or rather in the US or China.” Especially as it will not be easy to compensate for the loss of unskilled jobs expected in the wake of Industry 4.0 with an increase in skilled positions. At present, only 39% of companies interviewed for the “German Industry 4.0 Index” anticipate the number of people in work in Germany to increase overall as the result of Industry 4.0. For their own company, as few as 34% expect the number of personnel to rise with the transformation into a “smart factory”. “The starting position of the German economy is exceptionally good in order to get off to a flying start with Industry 4.0,” Industry 4.0 expert Frenzel explains. “However, in order to win the global race in the long term, too, there is no alternative to a regular exchange and close coordination between economy and politics.” Press graphics can be downloaded from: German Industry 4.0 Index
The “German Industry 4.0 Index” is based on a study by management consultancy Staufen AG. As part of the study, a total of 140 industrial firms were interviewed in August and September 2014. The majority of the companies interviewed are from the machinery and plant engineering sectors, the electrical industry and the automotive industry. The air travel, energy and logistics industries are also represented in the “German Industry 4.0 Index”. BestPractice Day 2015: The leading Lean management congress in Europe
At the BestPractice Day 2015 from 8 to 10 June 2015 in Darmstadt, companies and leading Lean management experts report about their experiences on the path to developing successful value creation systems. A focus for 2015: Industry 4.0 and Lean. For more information about the event, please visit:

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