Digital manufacturing solutions that enhance the customer experience while boosting the bottom line

Manufacturing has always faced pressures to improve cost, speed and resiliency.  Digital factory innovations, however, are accelerating solutions to these ever-present challenges.  While digital solutions are rapidly transforming factory floors, they also hold the potential to create efficiencies in the supply chain and generate new revenue possibilities – and new customer relationships – via IoT-driven connected products.

Despite the great promise Industry 4.0 holds, some enterprises are hampered by a lack of ability to connect the shop floor to enterprise data, deploy central analytics and insight platforms and adopt digital innovation into factory standard work.  It’s rare, then, for many manufacturers’ Industry 4.0 initiatives to achieve value at scale.

PwC’s smart factory tech-enabled services combine digital, modern and foundational capabilities, through our ‘value first, outcomes back’ approach, to drive manufacturing to become more flexible, more efficient and less prone to interruptions.

Our smart factory agile delivery model captures value through digital manufacturing by combining our strategy with manufacturing and digital capabilities. We help implement and configure the smart factory platform and "app store" (Factory Intelligence) with solutions that leverage analytics and the essential 8 technologies to help resolve operational challenges and unlock business value.

Here are some questions to consider to bring the operations-centered app store to life: How can my manufacturing facilities support my business strategy?

  • Which outcomes do I need to deliver this value?

  • Which capabilities can drive these outcomes?

  • Who are the players in my ecosystem and how can they support me in delivering these capabilities? How can they disrupt me?

  • What does my reference architecture look like?

  • How do I digitally upskill my organization to change ways of working, think differently and create pull for new solutions?

The benefits

Scaling up Industry 4.0’s value: Boost profitability, enhance resiliency and drive efficiencies.

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“Factories are considered smart when they are synchronized to meet the demands of their customers, doing so quickly, reliably, and with the optimal amount of capital and labor. Innovation in factory connectivity, data visualization and analytics, and automated workflows is helping manufacturers achieve this Smart Factory imperative."

Steve Pillsbury

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As best-in-class industrials ramp up smart-factory programs, they carry out initiatives grounded in a solid strategy ultimately aimed at building value at scale throughout the organization. They pursue greater value not only in operations and throughout the supply chain. They also do so and with an eye cast keenly on strengthening and enhancing customer experience. Below are core paths all industrials can consider along the Industry 4.0 journey.

Build your digital manufacturing strategy

Smart factories are only as strong as strategies supporting them

  • Assess your digital maturity and discover what can be done in-house and where partners are necessary
  • Assess how Industry 4.0 can reimagine your production portfolio
  • Select sites that are best suited for smart factory transformations
  • Consider how smart factory solutions can help optimize your manufacturing footprint
  • Assess realistic timeline and costs for factory design, layout and construction
  • Select the advanced manufacturing and technology that’s right for you — and that’s future-proofed
  • Create a referencable architecture design

Accelerate your time-to-value

Achieving value as quickly as possible is key to your smart-factory ROI

  • Design technology use cases and plan their development 
  • Assume a rapid ‘Connect & Detect’ PoC approach
  • Deploy bundled use case solutions and development toolkit
  • Build an advanced manufacturing, automation and robotics framework
  • Manufacturing operations management and MES

Leverage turnkey solutions and toolkits

Don’t reinvent the wheel. Here are some fast-track solutions.

  • PwC Factory Intelligence
  • PwC’s digital manufacturing vendor database
  • Digital operations maturity assessment
  • Artifical intelligence/ML Survey

Value at scale

Scale up successful smart-factory use cases through big organizational changes

  • Build an organization and governance model, including investment and tax structures
  • Create an operating model design
  • Carry out needed workplace culture and behavioral changes
  • Clarify new teaming, roles and responsibilities
  • Decide which skills and competencies will be acquired via upskilling and/or enlisting new talent

Digital manufacturing transformation enabled by our Alliances

At PwC, we take a technology agnostic approach to solving our client’s needs; however, our Alliance relationships offer a new equation for differentiating results. One that combines our experience enabled by technology with minimal disruption and maximum impact. Whatever your focus — greater innovation, cloud or business transformation, operational efficiency or faster product and service speed to market — PwC and our Alliances are here to solve your most critical business issues.

Take ZF — a leader in the automobile market based out of Friedrichshafen, Germany, who supplies commercial vehicle systems, industrial technology systems, and passenger car systems. To transform its processes and workflows — making manufacturing more flexible and efficient — ZF rolled out a Digital Manufacturing Program (DMP) in coordination with Microsoft and PwC Germany. Built on Microsoft Azure, PwC’s Factory Intelligence turns data into valuable insights through advanced analytics, visultations and automated workflows. Organizations like ZF are then able to improve manufacturing reference models, effectively reduce maintenance costs, predict failures and optimize material availability – from planning through execution.

Contact us

Steven Pillsbury

Steven Pillsbury

Smart Factory Leader, PwC US

Munawar Lakdawala

Munawar Lakdawala

Principal, Industrial Products and Services, PwC US

Marc  Waco

Marc Waco

Operations Innovation Leader, PwC US

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