Survey Snippets #5: Three Tips To Successfully Scale Your Transformation Business Case

Posted by Vivek Murugesan on May 05, 2022

Building business cases is often the first of many challenges today’s industrial companies have to face as part of their Industrial Transformation (IX) programs. The ideal business case should help companies identify and prioritize the correct problems and provide a clear roadmap for the solution.

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Categories: Business Process Management (BPM), Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Industry 4.0 / Smart Manufacturing, IX Platform

Reconciling IX and Continuous Improvement Organizationally: Not for the Faint at Heart

Posted by Tom Comstock on March 10, 2022

LNS Research has defined Industrial Transformation (IX) as the proactive and coordinated approach in leveraging digital technologies to create step-change improvement across the value chain. By definition, we are contrasting IX from such Continuous Improvement (CI) programs as Lean or World Class Manufacturing (WCM) by its focus on step-change. Further, we consistently note that IX is particularly challenging as solutions must be deployed across a manufacturing network that is diversified by manufacturing models, culture, Operational Technology (OT), and digital maturity.

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Categories: Operational Excellence, Continuous Improvement, Lean Manufacturing, Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, IT/OT, IX Platform

The IX Journey: Four Stages of Industrial Transformation (IX)

Posted by Tom Comstock on March 08, 2022

Industrial Transformation (IX) is the proactive and coordinated approach in leveraging digital technologies to create step-change improvement in industrial operations. Industrial Transformation has become a very real phenomena across industrial operations. More than two thirds of companies surveyed have implemented, are currently implementing, or plan to implement an Industrial Transformation (IX) program. The worldwide COVID pandemic is not slowing IX down with 78% of companies maintaining or accelerating their programs in the face of the economic turmoil created by the pandemic. IX Leaders are three times more likely to be increasing their IX budget in face of the pandemic.

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Categories: Continuous Improvement, Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Industry 4.0 / Smart Manufacturing, IT/OT, Operational Architecture, IX Platform

Rub-A-Dub-Dub...It's All About the Data Hub

Posted by Joe Perino on January 18, 2022

In my last blog on Data Contextualization, we talked about data contextualization at various levels in the OT Ecosystem architecture, particularly in the Operational Data Lake. LNS Research is increasingly hearing the term “Data Hub” used to describe the processing, conditioning, contextualization, persistence, and access functionality so key to data management and one’s ability to scale the New OT Ecosystem. Questions we frequently hear are:

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Categories: Cloud, Big Data, Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning (AI/ML), IT/OT, Operational Architecture, Edge, Autonomous Operations, IX Platform, Data Analytics

My Biggest 2022 Prediction:  Guess What Gets A Reset...Again

Posted by Tom Comstock on January 06, 2022

Every year, LNS Research analysts put forth predictions around the Industrial Transformation (IX) topics where we focus our research. In December 2020, I made five predictions for 2021. This year I am going to make only one prediction – in multiple parts – but I will drill into that one prediction more extensively. To help you to decide whether my multi-part prediction for 2022 is worth considering, I am concluding this blog post with an assessment of how I did in my 2021 predictions (spoiler alert: by my count, I was 4 out of 5 but you can decide).

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Categories: Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Industry 4.0 / Smart Manufacturing, Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning (AI/ML), IIoT, IX Platform, Data Analytics

Evaluating Potential Industrial Transformation (IX) Strategic Partners

Posted by Tom Comstock on October 07, 2021

As the year 2020 ended, LNS Research published a set of three Research Spotlights highlighting the three alternative architectural paths available for manufacturers around Industrial Transformation (IX). In the 3rd Spotlight we introduced the concept of Industrial Transformation Strategic Partners. As part of the run-up to the release of the LNS Research IX Strategic Partners Solution Selection Matrix™ let’s revisit our definition of IX Strategic Partners, highlight the criteria we use to evaluate these vendors, list the vendors, and conclude with advice to manufacturers.

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Categories: Solution Vendor / Software Vendor, Industrial Transformation / Digital Transformation, Industry 4.0 / Smart Manufacturing, Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning (AI/ML), IT/OT, IX Platform, Solution Selection Matrix

From Lighthouse to Center of Excellence

Posted by Tom Comstock on August 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.

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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 August 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.

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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 June 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.   

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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 June 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.

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