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Rockwell Automation Unveils 9th Annual “State of Smart Manufacturing Report” Highlighting Key Trends and Insights

by Anna

Rockwell Automation, the global leader in industrial automation and digital transformation, has released its highly anticipated 9th annual “State of Smart Manufacturing Report,” providing valuable insights into the evolving landscape of global manufacturing. The comprehensive study, which surveyed over 1,500 respondents from 17 countries including the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain, sheds light on emerging trends, challenges, and strategic plans within the industry.

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Three pivotal trends emerge from the report, signaling significant shifts in the manufacturing landscape:

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AI Revolutionizes Manufacturing:

The report underscores the widespread adoption of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technologies in manufacturing operations. In the UK, 79% of manufacturers anticipate integrating generative AI (GenAI) into their operations by 2024, with 94% planning to leverage AI and ML in advanced analytics, surpassing the global average. Notably, automation and optimization through AI and ML are cited as primary drivers of smart manufacturing investments.

Empowering the Workforce:

Manufacturers are investing in both people and technology to drive digital transformation. Rather than replacing roles, AI is seen as a tool to augment human capabilities and address labor shortages and skill gaps. In the UK, 38% of companies are utilizing remote work to access a wider talent pool for remote-capable jobs, reflecting a strategic approach to talent acquisition in the digital age.

Building Resilient Operations:

Quality remains a top priority for UK manufacturers, with an emphasis on enhancing decision-making with data and improving financial positions. The report highlights a shift towards resilient manufacturing ecosystems, with AI enabling data-driven decision-making and operational efficiency. UK manufacturers are setting new benchmarks for innovation and competitiveness by leveraging AI technologies.

Asa Arvidsson, Regional Vice President Sales, North Region at Rockwell Automation, emphasized the transformative impact of AI adoption in manufacturing, stating, “The strategic embrace of AI signifies a broader transformation towards smarter, more resilient manufacturing ecosystems. By leveraging AI to enhance data-driven decision-making and operational efficiency, UK manufacturers are setting new benchmarks for innovation and competitiveness on the global stage.”

The “State of Smart Manufacturing Report” provides a comprehensive overview of key findings and insights into the evolving landscape of global manufacturing. The full report can be accessed for further analysis and exploration.

Methodology:

The report analyzed feedback from 1,567 respondents across 17 manufacturing countries, encompassing roles from management to the C-suite. Conducted in association with Sapio Research and Plex Systems, the survey covered discrete, process, and hybrid industries, offering a balanced perspective across a wide range of company sizes and revenues.

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