Overcoming challenges with Industry 4.0
For long, the Laundry and Drycleaning industry has been lagging behind in terms of evolving the way it functions. As a result, a lot of the industry challenges arise from the fact that we are not upgrading ourselves as well as our businesses by implementing automation and digitization. As a result, we lag in making the best use of the technology around us, which is evolving at a rate faster than we can anticipate. The Gulf Laundrex Conference in Dubai on October 17, 2019, was aimed at addressing this very challenge of the industry and bringing forth the bestsuited solution that is actionable. Industry leaders representing various aspects of the Laundry and Dry-Cleaning Industry were invited to speak at the conference, including Elgar Straub, Managing Director, VDMA — Textile care, fabric and leather garments; Manoj Rai, Director of Laundry, Madinat Jumeirah Resort; Rachit Ahuja, CEO Quick Dry-Cleaning Software and Mohamad Abd Alwahid, Project Manager, Natronics International Inc.
Industry 4.0 comes across as the knight in shining armor for the industry challenges that have become a bottleneck for growth. Essentially, Industry 4.0, focusing on smart automation, carves the latest industrial revolution, by integrating mechanical technology with data exchanges using technologies like cloud computing, Internet of Things (IoT), Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), Big Data interpretations, Artificial intelligence, etc.
Design Principles and Goals
Now, as overwhelming as the names of these technologies can be equally overwhelming can be analyzing how do we implement these technologies to our industry. To ease out the process of assessment and implementation, there are 4 principles of implementation that lay out the ground rules for any industry to go forward with Industry 4.0.
• Interconnection: Communication between machines and devices via technology like the Internet of things (IoT).
• Information transparency: This is directed towards providing useful data in huge numbers that can be helpful in decision making for identifying growth points and innovation required to achieve future goals.
• Technical assistance: This is important to get a comprehensive analysis of data to make informed decisions for solving problems that are short on time. Also, this helps in taking care of exhaustive and monotonous tasks that reduce the efficiency of your resources and expensive manpower.
• Decentralized decisions: This is largely effective in taking care of repetitive tasks and perform actions based on pre-defined outcomes. This enables businesses to focus on high productivity tasks and get more work done in less time.
Another major goal of industrial revolution 4.0 is to integrate green energy and green products into the way businesses think and function.
Impact of Industry 4.0
If it wasn’t for big data analysis technology, accounting reports for business would not have been possible. Every business is highly dependent on its numbers to make sound decisions for their business that can completely pivot the growth graph.
The examples are endless to signify the importance that industry 4.0 holds in the current time. It goes without saying that industry 4.0 is going to be the next X factor for the growth and sustainability of the Laundry and dry-cleaning industry.
Implementing industry 4.0
Manoj Rai, director of laundry, Madinat Jumeirah Resort, one of the elite speakers at the MECTW 2019, rightly said that being in the laundry service, it’s all about the consumer. His objective of using Industry 4.0 was to deliver customer satisfaction. He said he wanted technology to help him to achieve better operational efficiency that can make his and his team’s life better. This aptly, is the most accurate goal of using technology.
Mohamad Abd Alwahid, Project Manager, Natronics International Inc, shared how they are implementing 4.0 through their machines. The machines are getting smarter, artificial intelligence is helping capture the data that the machine server did before. This data gives critical information about machine cycles, performance, fabric, and whatnot. This will help the businesses to understand machines better and improve the usage to deliver optimum utilization.
Outcome of industry 4.0
Rachit Ahuja, CEO Quick Dry-Cleaning Software, said- “working in and alongside several veterans of the Laundry and Dry-cleaning industry has given me an opportunity to understand and anticipate the challenges that exist in the industry. We are living in the jungle of information. Any information is useless until it makes sense to you or is useful in projecting future trends and trajectories. Hence, it is important to make meaning out of data and present it in a way that is actionable.”
Rachit explained that one of the prime initiatives is to make hardware speak to the software. Artificial intelligence and advanced robotics can completely change the way we operate our businesses currently. But this is possible only if we can make our hardware communicate with the software to make sense. To be specific, Artificial intelligence and cloud computing have vast implementation in the Laundry and Dry-Cleaning industry.
From providing data for strategic business decisions to empowering you to run your business on auto mode, these technologies give real power to your business. Coming from a technical background, Rachit has a sound knowledge on how technology works and how important it is for the industry. He said that the information is optimized and utilized in a way that uses the knowledge to improve operational efficiency which can lead to better employee performance. The experience is not limited to just the business or employees or business owners. The most important asset of your business- your customers get an unprecedented experience. On the other hand, Cloud computing has the capacity to harness the power of Artificial intelligence & IoT (Internet of Things) and deliver business management which was unheard of a few years back. It is not only safe but smart, intelligent, cost-effective too.
To make this dream a reality, Software solutions are a must. SaaS Software helps you with technology implementation that is swift, smooth and effortless. With support and guidance, software solutions can empower not just your business, but also help you envision your future goals and unleash the true potential of your business.
Industry 4.0 comes at just the right time when the industry bottlenecks have surfaced to be existing globally. The industry’s global market value stands at 13.75 Billion USD for the year 2019 and this number is predicted to grow at the rate of more than 4% CAGR. As we all know, our industry is highly fragmented and has a big pool of players. With such big numbers involved the game changers and key driver of the market is going to be the introduction of smart technology or industrial revolution 4.0.
Technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT) will simplify the laundry experience of the customer. It can transform the laundry business, making it easier, affordable, and more efficient for the user. Hence, more than ever, now is the time to adapt and adopt the revolution to your business and witness the transformation that was once unachievable.