PwC: What are the major obstacles industrial manufacturers face in implementing digital initiatives?

PwC: What are the major obstacles industrial manufacturers face in implementing digital initiatives?

Chamber Member News Post Date: 10/19/17 Source: PwC By: Bobby Bono
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The primary barrier to implementing digital initiatives is a lack of properly skilled teams, which was cited by 26% of the industrial manufacturing respondents in our latest Digital IQ® study. Other key barriers (each cited by 22% of industrial manufacturing respondents) to achieving expected results from current digital technology investments include ineffective project management, inflexible or slow processes, and poor integration of new and existing technologies. Often in our work with industrial manufacturers, we find companies are encumbered with outmoded data gathering and analytics systems, which increase the difficulty of integrating new digital technologies with legacy systems.

Looking ahead, 49% of industrial manufacturing leaders say the biggest emerging barrier to achieving results from digital initiatives is outdated technologies. Executives also expressed concern about the lack of integration of new and existing technologies and data (41%) and the lack of properly skilled teams to manage the adoption of new technologies (38%).

Both current and future concerns about digital technologies stem, in large part, from inadequate investment and lack of skilled talent. Unless investment levels pick up, manufacturers will be left with outdated technologies – the very issue they say is emerging as the top barrier. Investment is also needed to improve data-gathering and analytic systems, so they can be integrated with newer digital technologies.

Obtaining skilled labor also requires investment. With so many industries vying for similar talent, it helps to stand out from the crowd. Better salaries and working conditions undoubtedly play a role in attracting and retaining talent. But we can’t discount the need to create training programs that tailor skill development to organizational needs and provide the workforce with the skills necessary to use new digital tools. Also, companies may need to broaden the ways they search for talent, including forging closer ties to tech companies, start-ups, and university research labs. Read Full Article