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Industry 4.0: What is Industry 4.0 & Why Does it Matter?

Written by Denise Rice. Denise is the CEO of Peak Performance and the Manufacturing Consultant to the Tennessee Manufacturers Association.She is a former plant manager with nearly 30 years of experience in the manufacturing industry.

Industry 4.0. is a term used to refer to the way computers, data and automation are evolving. Building on the third industrial revolution that included the creation of the PC and the internet, Industry 4.0 takes technology to the next evolution by blurring the lines between the digital and physical worlds with the introduction of artificial intelligence, virtual reality and cognitive computing.

Industry 4.0 in manufacturing has been called a “smart factory” taking what already exists in manufacturing and improving upon it. This technology is not new; however, combining, collaborating and integrating all the different technologies together is. Manufacturers can benefit by maximum flexibility and minimal cost, and predictive maintenance that creates more efficiency and a stronger bottom line. The Tennessee Manufacturers Association recently held a Statewide Tour where we polled manufacturers on what is driving Industry 4.0 and below are their results.

Roughly 72% of manufacturers say that improved operations is what is driving their Industry 4.0 implementation efforts in their organization.

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