7 in 10 manufacturers view mobility as key to productivity: study
July 17, 2009 by Manufacturing AUTOMATION
A recent research study commissioned by Motorola Inc. found over seven in ten surveyed information technology (IT) decision-makers in the manufacturing industry are looking to leverage mobile and wireless solutions to streamline operations. The study found manufacturers with mobility applications saved a daily average of 42 minutes per employee.
The Motorola Enterprise Mobility Manufacturing Barometer surveyed manufacturing IT decision makers in 14 countries across four continents, of whom 80 percent cited that mobility was more important for their organizations today than in 2008. This represents a nine percent increase from previous research, indicating that enterprise mobility applications continue to grow in importance as manufacturers look to boost operational efficiencies and increase productivity in the current macro-economic climate. “
Over one-quarter of those surveyed identified inventory/materials management and sales force applications as their organization’s top drivers for continued mobility investments. Key application investment on the shop floor was driven by inventory management, materials management, and process-oriented applications such as work-in-progress (WIP) tracking, human machine interface (HMI)/operator interface applications and quality control/quality assurance.
The study also identified the rising demand for sales force and field service applications, with nearly 29 per cent of surveyed enterprises using field service applications citing an increase in business revenues/sales results and 25 per cent reporting an increase in customer/partner satisfaction.” From a geographical perspective, all regions agreed that inventory management was a key mobile application for the manufacturing industry, while Asia Pacific highlighted the importance of customer-facing applications and the Americas and Europe touted sales force applications.
In summary, manufacturers investing and leveraging wireless infrastructure and industry-specific devices see higher productivity for all workers, increased velocity of investment in raw materials and an increase in the accuracy and relevance of the real-time data they need to make better business decisions.
“With more than 60 percent of the surveyed manufacturing IT decision makers stating that their organization currently has a mobility strategy, it is clear that mobility is no longer viewed by manufacturing IT executives as the vision of the future but strategically important today,” said Jim Hilton, senior director, Global Manufacturing Solutions for Motorola Enterprise Mobility Solutions. “In fact, more than one-half of those surveyed cited a competitive advantage through the use of mobile and wireless technologies to empower their shop-floor and field-mobility workforce to take advantage of opportunities in the marketplace.”