5 Ways AI and Machine Learning is Changing the Face of Manufacturing

In this episode, we talk with Louis Columbus, a Forbes columnist and principal at IQMS. Louis talks through five ways artificial intelligence and machine learning are revolutionizing the manufacturing industry — from marketing and sales to efficiency, from addressing the talent gap to ensuring quality, safety and security.

13:24 – Labor Challenges

 I visit a lot of manufacturers. I visit probably five to 10 manufacturers a month, and I periodically do surveys every quarter as part of my role at Dassault IQMS. We did a survey and we asked what are the top impediments to your growth in 2019, and we asked them in April. We asked 150 North American discrete manufacturers in the mid tier of the market, and number one at 67% was we don’t have enough people. Labor is incredibly challenging right now for the mid tier, the American manufacturing or the North American manufacturing. I’d even say the global manufacturing landscape, where it’s common that skilled welders, skilled plastics technicians, are getting bonuses to sign. Keep in mind, a lot of these plastics manufacturing businesses are founded in remote geographic locations. Maybe they were associated with a large OEM account. They became a supplier. They got their start as a supplier. And then they attracted customers, but now they’re at a remote location and they can’t find people. And this is an epidemic that plagues manufacturing.

19:21 – Zero Trust Security

Zero trust security by definition is always verify, never trust approach to every security perimeter on a manufacturing location, and what zero trust security does is it verifies every device and it treats every device and every identity as a new part of the security perimeter. And so with the growth more and more of real time monitoring of machinery and every various threats or if it’s that a manufacturer has being exposed, it’s really critical to be able to protect it down to that specific device level.

22:38 – AI and Machine Learning Impacts on Safety

Now what’s really fascinating when you go and walk shop floors and you meet manufacturers who have invested anywhere from five to 10 million dollars in new smart connected machinery. That machinery’s got all kinds of safeguards in it. But more importantly, those machines have the ability to heal themselves, but also have their own innate operating systems. And how this all relates to safety is they will tell you if they are getting to a heat point or to a point with their own metrics of like, hey, this may get borderline unsafe in this environment, so therefore I’m gonna shut myself off. Or, therefore I’m gonna send you an alert to the quality manager. Safety is much more sophisticated than many opponents of AI and machine learning and manufacturing give it credit for, much, much more sophisticated.

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