Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 34 - Page 93

//////////////////////////////////////////////////////// INTELLIGENT VERTICAL: MANUFACTURING WHY HUMAN INTERACTION IS STILL NEEDED DESPITE AUTOMATION Jim Hilton, Director Global Manufacturing at Zebra Technologies, says the manufacturing sector can be changed for the better through the use of AI. O ver the past few years the talk of how automation can change industrial operations has become more prevalent. Indeed, the headline- seekers out there might ask: will robots end up taking our jobs and what will happen to the human workforce? Hyperbole aside, the rise of the robots in the form of Artificial Intelligence (AI) is certainly improving sectors such as manufacturing and transport and logistics (T&L). For example, robots can perform mundane, repetitive tasks without loss of concentration or risk of error. They might also be able to access hard to reach spaces and assess stock count with greater accuracy. Couple this with the fact McKinsey predicts 800 million jobs could be lost by 2030, and you will understand why workers are feeling threatened by the future. This is just a hypothesis. In fact, across both manufacturing and transpor t and logistics T&L sectors, it’s obvious that automation will increase productivity and the human touch will always be needed. The human touch in manufacturing With the advent of Manufacturing 4.0, comprising data capture and exchange by using technologies such as Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), cloud computing and cognitive computing, the automated industry is changing for the better. This new approach will enable executives to have complete visibility of operations and the ability to capture every process in the form of data. This information, ultimately analysed by humans, not machines, will make production more efficient and in turn drive cost savings. The use of IIoT can also monitor the stock of raw materials in real time. This will enable staff to oversee and order new stock, leading to continuous productivity and avoiding a “ HUMAN INTERACTION IS ESSENTIAL TO RESPOND AND MAKE DECISIONS ON HOW DATA IS BEST USED FOR MAXIMUM EFFICIENCY. break in the chain when, say, a paint or car part is running low. The automotive industry is a key sector in manufacturing to take advantage of automation to drive production. Working with Zebra Technologies’ solutions, Troy Design & Manufacturing (TDM), a Detroit- based metal stamping subsidiary of Ford INTELLIGENTCIO 93