It’s hard to find an industry that big data isn’t making an impact in, but the world of manufacturing showcases the operational power of big data like no other. In manufacturing, big data analysis is being used to improve production while helping eliminate waste and lower costs. This is particularly evident in the sectors of biopharmaceutical production, chemical manufacturing, and discreet manufacturing. Here are just a few of the many ways that big data is revolutionizing the manufacturing industry.
Big Data is Ushering in the Reality of the Smart Factory
As big data helps to integrate the processes of information technologies and operational systems within manufacturing facilities, the dream of the Smart Factory is coming to fruition. Big data can be used to optimize production schedules by factoring in information on different suppliers, customer delivery options, the availability of machines on the shop floor, the fluctuating costs of materials, and a variety of other factors that affect their daily operations. As the functions of different departments within these facilities work more closely together, analytics will become even more important to the success of the Smart Factory.
More Accurate Forecasting of Demand and Production
Plant performance is determined by a number of metrics, not just output. Additionally, customer service and support is becoming increasingly important to manufacturing. Both of these areas are places where big data can improve the performance of manufacturing facilities. Big data analytics can provide advanced warning of upcoming demand, so that production can be speeded up or slowed down to meet market requirements. This allows factories to achieve on-demand deliveries to satisfy customers’ requirements.
Greater Visibility into the Quality of Supplier Products
The quality of products delivered by suppliers can vary over time, affecting the production and quality at the manufacturing facility. Through big data analytics, manufacturers can get a better understanding of how delivery times, delivery accuracy, and product quality varies with any given supplier, as well as how each supplier stacks up against another. This data can then be used to determine which suppliers to depend on, and which might be replaced with a more reliable supplier, or one that can offer better, more consistent quality.
Determining Production and Quality by Machine or by Worker
Now that sensors are available on virtually all factory machines, it is possible to fully analyze how each worker, each machine, and each worker on each machine performs on the production floor. This helps production managers with everything from scheduling to maintenance to distributing bonuses. The work can now be streamlined for maximum efficiency.
What most manufacturing facilities lack is the funds and ability to store, process, and analyze this data in-house. It’s cheaper and more efficient to outsource big data storage to a cloud service provider, where the information can be accessed quickly and stored securely. For technology decision makers, Bigstep is the brand of cloud hosting provider that offers the highest-performance public cloud in the world. Bigstep can help you meet your big data goals while staying within budget and never losing the ability to get information quickly and easily for real-time operations and decision making. Visit Bigstep today for a demonstration of their data-crunching capabilities.