Key factors of future production landscapes

People, technology and adaptation: companies that keep these key factors in mind are successful in shaping the production landscape of tomorrow.

The keys to success within your industry

The world of production as we know it is going through a period of radical change. Scattered islands of manufacturing are merging to produce a dynamic landscape, a Future Production Landscape: digital, networked and readily adaptable to the requirements of companies and the demands of the market.

“Those who want to make full use of the potential of future production landscapes and secure a lasting competitive advantage need to establish a link between these three key factors: people, technology and adaptation,” emphasizes industrial robotics expert Prof. Dr.-Ing. Dirk Jacob.

Companies need to bring these three key factors together and incorporate them into their processes and systems in order to deal with megatrends and dynamic market trends successfully. What’s more, the key factors must be reflected in the products and services on offer so that added value is generated at each and every stage of the value creation chain.

Find out about the three key factors of the production landscape of the future.


Generate value at the human-machine interface.

Sustainable production landscapes need people – both in developmental and operational roles. Take your employees with you on your journey into the future. The positive effects of flexible and networked productions systems will only be felt once they can be set up, operated and refined easily by your employees.

Simplifying interfaces across the board, whether it’s for programming, commissioning, operation, analysis or service purposes, will enable a broad range of employees to use intelligent production technologies and to adapt to specific requirements.

Furthermore, technical assistance systems such as cobots, augmented reality and virtual reality are becoming everyday assistants in production shops. They provide the employees with assistance, thus paving the way for new working methods and fields of application.

The key factor “People” provides the basis for the future success of your company. That being said, it can only deliver its full potential if it is combined with the other key factors “Technology” and “Adaptation”.


Production technologies of the future: customizable, networked and intelligent.

By combining Operational Technology (OT) and Information Technology (IT), we are able to push the existing boundaries of production landscapes. Hardware and software can monitor and control machines, systems and processes autonomously. By integrating them into networks and combining them with IT-driven developments such as artificial intelligence, Big Data and the Cloud, it is possible to create brand-new, high-quality opportunities for production companies.

Customizable production technologies such as robot-based production lines, matrix production or mobile platforms open up a vast range of potential applications and benefits. Adaptable production landscapes enable companies to react to infrastructural conditions, capacity requirements and consumer trends in an agile and effective manner.

The key factor Technology” enables your company to operate competitively in a digitalized and automated market environment. However, the production landscape will only become sustainable if “technology” is combined with “people” and “adaptation”.


Taking a proactive approach to new market demands – by quickly adapting new technologies

Your company’s ability to adapt and the flexibility of its processes and technologies will determine whether it can keep up with the pace of technological change. To remain competitive in times of dynamic market trends, you should be investing more heavily in open interfaces and networked ecosystems. These are the keys to establishing a thriving culture of innovation and the basis for needs-based adaptations and modernizations, functional enhancements and continuous refinement.

This enables you, for example, to use plug-ins to load specific applications onto robots, thus providing them with new capabilities. By establishing a link to Smart Services, it is possible to identify optimization options at an early stage and run updates automatically. Even physical adjustments and modifications to robots, cells and systems can be carried out seamlessly by adaptive, customizable technologies.

By enabling cooperation via networks and communities, in which developers, system integrators, production experts and other stakeholders convene, it is possible to comprehensively analyze and make full use of the potential of technologies – creating added value for both the user and the supplier.

The key factor “Adaptation” is the basis which enables you to keep your production technology up-to-date at all times. However, it can only be implemented successfully and turned into a competitive advantage if it is used in combination with the key factors “People” and “Technology”.

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