Industry 4.0: Digital Labelling for a Connected Enterprise

Industry 4.0: Digital Labelling for a Connected Enterprise

By Graham Francis, Channel Marketing Manager, Kallik

In my last blog, I talked about the relationship between digital transformation and digital labelling and the benefits this brings in terms of transparency, compliance and consistency. I’m now going to reflect on the relationship between Industry 4.0 and best practice labelling and artwork.

In preparing for presenting and exhibiting at the forthcoming Supply Chain Innovation Leaders Summit in Barcelona later this year, I’ve been undertaking some background reading into this initiative and I’ve been surprised by what I’ve learnt. Following early adoption by the automotive industry, in particular Toyota and Nissan, Industry 4.0 has been gaining much ground across other sectors including Chemical, Pharmaceutical and Medical Device manufacturers.

Working in the technology industry, X.0 initiatives seem to be commonplace and sometimes it’s not easy to separate hype from reality. All too often it seems there is a plethora of research, positioning and publishing undertaken by industry experts and suppliers alike, but a lack of conviction and clarity of delivered benefits often seems to weaken the investment case.

Industry 4.0 appears to be different. According to research carried out by PwC in 2016, there are some quite staggering figures being reported across a mix of industries. US$439bn p.a. in revenue gains and US$421bn p.a. savings point to strong returns on an annual investment of US$907bn across the industry. Of course, as pointed out by Deloitte in their article discussing the rise of the digital supply network (DSN), ‘Change is often hard, but the digitisation of information and the application of advanced technologies present the opportunity to drive business value throughout the supply chain.’ The move towards a more agile, connected community through embracing digital supply chain concepts is never going to be an easy transition, but the benefits are clear to see.

Despite all the challenges of migrating from a vertical to a horizontally integrated business, increased use of manufacturing and distribution partners spanning a global market means that industry has to change if it is to remain competitive. But it’s not just external partners that need better integration, each internal function right from R&D to customer fulfilment needs end to end transparency to support real-time collaboration and informed decision making. The only way to do this is to have all stakeholders fully connected and empowered at all times.

Here at Kallik, I’m happy to say that we are strongly aligned with Industry 4.0. We see labelling and artwork as an enterprise-wide process and one that is fully integrated across global supply chain operations. Early in our development as a company, we recognised that our customers needed to move from a document to data centric world that would make it easier to share content and collaborate on new initiatives. They also needed dismantle the traditional boundaries that existed between the various functions engaged in label design, approval and production and the easiest way to do this was to move to a cloud based deployment model to ensure everyone stayed connected. And if it’s not already obvious, what they’ve achieved by doing so is to have undertaken an important step in their journey towards full Industry 4.0 implementation.

If you’d like to hear more about our how we can help align your global supply chains with Industry 4.0 by embracing more agile labelling and artwork processes, why not join us at the Supply Chain Innovation Leader’s Summit in Barcelona later this year.

See also our latest news outlining our recent successes in this area: Kallik Leadership Team Delivers on Bold Growth Plans

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