Your guide to start using data

Your guide to start using data

Industry 4.0, sustainability, and data analysis. It can be tricky to keep up with the terminology. A new wave is washing over the companies concerning data and the communication between machines. Industry 4.0 will change the production companies with power much greater than that of robots and automation. We will guide you into this brave new world.

Welcome to a new article in our Trendlog blog universe! Last time we were focusing on the link between sustainability and Industry 4.0 arguing that better use of data can create more sustainable productions. But unfortunately, a myth among companies is that they are already using their data. This is a dangerous misconception. Many companies do track and analyze customer data, orders, and product flows, but they lack the right data collected from their machines to be presented in an actionable way. It is not the extraction of data that is important, it is the collection of data into one platform comprehensible for management that is crucial. 

In this article we want to give you some tips on how to join the Industry 4.0 wave. As we elaborated upon in our last article, Industry 4.0 is a paradigm shift, which follows the first wave of automation. What’s new is the link between machines themselves, and between humans and machines. Simply put, we can do more with less, if we use data efficiently. 

1. What do you want to achieve?

Basically, the data wave can be overwhelming, particularly, for smaller companies. It can be hard to take in, as well as, to know where to start and where to end. Therefore, we often advise our customers to start with a basic analysis of which areas in your production you wish to improve. Examples could be to reduce your usage of energy, improve your productivity or to determine the causes of your lost production time. When these targets are finalized, you can move on to the next step. 

2. Draw up measurable criteria

Your preliminary analysis will usually bring some measuring points to light, which can support your business goals. But be cautious that your analysis does not get too broad. We recommend that you start out with fewer, sharpened measurable points. You will have a much stronger starting point with three razor-sharp criteria than ten broad ones. Your measurement points define your data success. Thus, we cannot underline enough how important it is to use the same data points to benchmark across departments so that you are able to get sufficient volume on the individual measurement points. That’s what makes the difference. 

When you are getting into it and, as previously set example, see the value of reducing the usage of energy with 25 pct. via data, then you can move on to extending your analysis with new measurement points.

3. Think process rather than technology

When working with the analysis you can easily become too focused on the singular machine. But data analysis can do much more than show anomalies, it can also help you forecast developments and help develop new flows. Data can guide you and your company to new processes and value chains, and you should therefore use your newly-found competencies within data to be open to alternative purchases for your production plants. The future of the company does not lie within what you are capable to adjust today, but which new concepts you can bring to the market tomorrow. Hence, use data as an eye opener. Perhaps, consider virtual reality or mobile platforms to bring ideas out to all areas of the company. 

We hope, you can make use of these tips. Of course, these are not exhaustive guides or instructions, so do not hesitate to contact us for more guidance or sparring. Trendlog is always ready with tips on how to make the most of your data. In the next blog post we will look forward and take a sneak peek into the new Al-technologies, which Industry 4.0 brings with it. We hope, you will stay posted. Subscribe to be notified of future articles and tips.

Question of the day:

What is your biggest challenge in relation to the use of data?

We invite you to tell us about it, and we would be more than willing to grab a cup of coffee and have a chat with you about your biggest challenges. Reach out to us!

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