The German Academy of Science and Engineering, acatech, announced the initiative which should result in an effective maturity index by April 2017. The consortium is mainly composed of research institutions, industry bodies and several, predominantly German universities and companies.
One striking name in the consortium is Infosys. The Indian multinational consulting, IT services and digital transformation corporation, announced its participation on the same day when the consortium and maturity index plans were unveiled.
According to Infosys the index aims to enable organizations to assess their current Industry 4.0 capacities, conduct a gap analysis and define a roadmap, mapping out actions and steps to fully leverage the smart integration of cyber-physical systems, machines and obviously people using the Industrial Internet, including the Industrial Internet of Things.
The state of Industry 4.0 (readiness) across the globe
The participation of Infosys is obviously interesting for the company but Infosys has also been very active in Industrie 4.0.
As a matter of fact, the company states that the Industrie 4.0 Maturity Index will be build upon the global study it commissioned, in collaboration with the Institute for Industrial Management (FIR) at the RWTH Aachen University.
The mentioned global research is a manufacturing study, entitled “Industry 4.0: The state of the nations”, which was released in May 2015 and predominantly looked at asset efficiency. It found an increasing maturity of cyber-physical system deployments but ample challenges and steps to take.
Some key takeaways from this first global study into Industry 4.0 readiness (with over 400 participating manufacturing companies from 5 countries):
- 85 percent of responding businesses see the potential of Industry 4.0.
- Only 15 percent have dedicated strategies for Industrie 4.0 in place.
- 89 percent of respondents are aware of the potential of information efficiency through the implementation of data standards.
- Only 11 percent have systematically implemented data security and standards.
- 81 percent of respondents are aware of monitoring machine status for maintenance goals but just 17 percent has put principles into practice.
- 88 percent consider that energy management important. Yet, you guessed it only a small percentage implements practices into their process.
The Industrie 4.0 Maturity Index
It’s pretty clear that the research essentially found gaps (those eternal gaps everywhere, in information management, customer experience management, digital transformation, you name it) between Industry 4.0 benefits perceptions and the actual strategies in place to reap those benefits.
From there to an Industrie 4.0 maturity index with the steps to take and how to take them is of course a logical next step, especially since Infosys also looked at Industry 4.0 maturity in the research as the infographic shows.
In the research Infosys found that the most mature industries from an Industry 4.0 implementation perspective were respectively automotive, electronics and process.
On a country level, China was the most mature, yet the US, UK and Germany are in pretty good shape too, although the difference with China is large as is the difference between the US and Germany. Of the 5 surveyed countries, France turned out to the least mature Industry 4.0 adopter.
Back to the Industrie 4.0 maturity index. We need to emphasize, that this is not just an Infosys project but now you see why Infosys is a partner and member of the consortium.
As the Institute for Industrial Management (FIR) at the RWTH Aachen University states, the project which needs to enable businesses to build their individual Industrie 4.0 roadmap, will be published as a position paper of acatech (and is presented at Hannover Messe 2017).
Among the several German partners and associations co-developing the Industrie 4.0 maturity index with manufacturing companies are, on top of Infosys and FIR, the universities of Darmstadt and Paderborn, Fraunhofer IML and the DKFI (short for Deutsches Forschungszentrum für Künstliche Intelligenz or German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence), the Heinz Nixdorf Institut, TÜV SÜD AG, Datenverarbeitung in der Konstruktion and Intelligent Technical Systems Ostwestfalen-Lippe.