From Lighthouse to Center of Excellence

Posted by Tom Comstock on Tue, Aug 31, 2021

In a recent blog post, our fearless leader, President and Principal Analyst Matthew Littlefield, noted that, “Although no one can argue with the technological innovation and productivity gains that lighthouse plants demonstrate, our data shows that including lighthouse plants as part of your Industrial Transformation (IX) program does not correlate to success.”  This post builds on that earlier post and drills into when lighthouse strategies can be effective and what is an alternative strategy more correlated to success.

Read More

Categories: Operational Excellence, Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, IX Platform, Lighthouse Manufacturing, Lighthouse Plants

The “Holy Grail” and the “Puzzle” in Discrete and Batch Manufacturing Applications

Posted by Tom Comstock on Thu, Aug 12, 2021

We all know the reality of discrete and batch manufacturers. If you walk into virtually any manufacturing plant, you will find literally hundreds of manufacturing computing applications being utilized. A few of those applications, ERP most prominently, are generally supported by the corporate IT staff. A wider number of those applications, automation and MES, are typically supported by operations itself via the OT team or the “shadow IT” team (the manufacturing engineers, etc., that are providing day-to-day support to these systems). The vast majority of applications are custom – often built in Excel, Access, or Java – and are not well-supported and virtually impossible to deploy across sites. And, the picture gets worse: despite all these applications, operational personnel are still looking for more technology to help reduce manufacturing costs and improve quality.

Read More

Categories: Manufacturing Operations Management (MOM), Manufacturing Execution System (MES), Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, IX Platform, qualitymanagement

EHS Transformation Starts with Effective Leadership

Posted by Peter S Bussey on Thu, Jun 24, 2021

Part of the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has been a resurgence of the Environment, Health and Safety (EHS) business function. Anyone paying attention has seen that the management (or mismanagement) of EHS-related operational risks can directly impact business continuity, for better or worse. Now more than ever, license to operate, let alone profitable operations, depend on effective management of safety, health, and environmental risks.   

Read More

Categories: Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Environment, Health and Safety (EHS), IX Platform, ConnectedFrontlineWorkforce

Survey Snippets #3: The Evolution of Industrial Transformation (IX) Leaders

Posted by Vivek Murugesan on Tue, Jun 15, 2021

LNS Research first introduced the term Industrial Transformation (IX) in our research on Industrial Transformation Readiness in 2018. We chose the moniker to specifically distinguish from the existing Digital Transformation term as we see IX as an important but distinct subset of the broader Digital Transformation umbrella. Our definition of Industrial Transformation states that IX is a proactive and coordinated approach in leveraging digital technologies to create step-change improvement in industrial operations.

Read More

Categories: Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, IT/OT, Survey Snippets, IX Platform

Should Pharma Regain MES Leadership or Become the New IX Leaders?

Posted by Andrew Hughes on Tue, Jun 01, 2021

Since the advent of Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES, or MOM for those who prefer) in the late 1980s, life sciences, and especially pharmaceuticals finishing and packing, led the way in useful MES solutions. Some would argue that MES for pharma has reached maturity and there are few gains to be made. At LNS Research, we believe that change is just beginning and it is time for the pharma software industry to wake up or get severely disrupted by new players.

Many pharmaceutical companies, ranging from boutique startups to the global giants, have active Industrial Transformation (IX) programs that foresee structural changes in the way they operate. Existing pharma MES systems provide the necessary functionality for most operations but are hard to maintain, inflexible, and do not provide a data platform for other parts of the enterprise. Such integration will, inevitably, be a part of IX programs. 

Read More

Categories: Manufacturing Operations Management (MOM), Manufacturing Execution System (MES), Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Industry 4.0 / Smart Manufacturing, Internet of Things (IoT), IX Platform, Big Pharma

Do Lighthouse Plants Drive Industrial Transformation - or Just an Exercise in Excess, Ego, and Marketing?

Posted by Matthew Littlefield on Thu, May 27, 2021

In our 2021 Industrial Transformation (IX) Readiness research, we asked more than 300 industrial companies where they were on their IX journey. Since our 2019 study, the share of companies fully committed to the journey soared from 16% to 28% - crossing the proverbial chasm. Conversely, the share of companies “stuck in pilot purgatory” fell from 13% to 7%. 

Read More

Categories: Operational Excellence, Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Industry 4.0 / Smart Manufacturing, IX Platform, Lighthouse Plants

Digital Twins Uncomplicated: Answering the Three Most Asked Questions

Posted by Tom Comstock on Wed, May 19, 2021

LNS Research has been writing about Digital Twins for a number of years. We still find our manufacturing clients confused by the opportunities presented by Digital Twins and unclear on how to proceed. In face of this reality, we wanted to set up a simple framework for thinking about Digital Twin use cases and answer some of the most common questions we hear about these concepts.

Read More

Categories: Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Digital Twin, IX Platform

New Solution Selection Matrix for the IX Platform Helps Guide Your Shortlist of Suppliers

Posted by Tom Comstock on Fri, Apr 30, 2021

Industrial Transformation (IX) continues to animate manufacturers worldwide. Our 2020 global survey shows that more than three-quarters of companies are executing, piloting, or planning on executing an Industrial Transformation (IX) program in the next 12 months despite a global pandemic. Industrial Transformation Platforms (IX Platforms) are a core component to the majority of IX Leaders who are three times more likely to be implementing an IX Platform as compared to Followers.

Read More

Categories: Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, IX Platform, Solution Selection Matrix

Connected Frontline Workforce Applications:  Pushing the Frontiers of Industrial Transformation

Posted by Peter S Bussey on Fri, Apr 02, 2021

It’s been nearly three years since LNS Research initiated coverage of the digitally connected industrial worker space with the publication of our seminal research, “The Connected Worker: Mobilize and Empower People to Reduce Risk and Improve Safety”. Since then, we’ve continued to conduct research and develop our point of view on the topic while working closely with a variety of industrial organizations and technology vendors on their connected worker initiatives and solutions.

Read More

Categories: Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Connected Worker, IX Platform, ConnectedFrontlineWorkforce

Understanding Industrial Transformation (IX) Analytics

Posted by Joe Perino on Wed, Mar 24, 2021

LNS Research’s initial work outlined the three architectural approaches to Industrial Transformation (IX). We also detailed the advantages and disadvantages for industrial users of each of these architectural paths and the underlying IX Infrastructure. We are now extending our research to advanced analytics. So, in this blog, we define Industrial Transformation (IX) Analytics and how LNS classifies its use.

Read More

Categories: Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, IX Platform, Industrial Transformation Platform, Industrial Transformation Analytics