Augury Report: AI investment on the rise, but manufacturers still missing production potential

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Augury, a provider of industrial AI solutions that improve machine health and process health, today released “The State of Production Health 2023” report, which identifies challenges, trends, and best practices in manufacturing’s quest to balance the competing demands of profits, people, and the planet.

The report found mixed emotions over the direction of manufacturing, as less than a quarter (22%) of leaders say they feel optimistic about the future. Yet most say technology is a silver lining, with 80% of respondents saying technology adoption will positively impact workforce upskilling efforts.

“For over a decade, manufacturers worldwide set their sights on implementing digital, connected, and insight-driven strategies that would modernise manufacturing: Industry 4.0,” said Saar Yoskovitz, Augury’s CEO and Co-Founder. “Today, only a small percentage have reached those goals. And now, global trends – like supply chain disruptions, workforce issues, environmental crises, and looming regulations – are forcing the industry to adopt technology faster than ever.”  

Other key insights and highlights from “The State of Production Health 2023” report include: 

AI & Technology Investment on the Rise 

Only 3% of manufacturers plan to reduce AI spending this year, with 63% planning to increase these budgets. Though AI is used widely across the industry, data shows that the ability to quantify its impact varies widely, leaving leaders unsure of its overall value. The report identified upskilling the workforce as a top manufacturing objective for leveraging AI in 2023, followed by increasing capacity and streamlining supply chain visibility.  

Manufacturers Missing the Mark on Production Potential and Sustainability Opportunities 

While 70% of manufacturers rank the ability to meet their full production potential as good to excellent, many admit to struggling with unreliable equipment, unplanned downtime, and other addressable challenges. 

An overwhelming majority (71%) of manufacturers believe that sustainability targets either hurt or have no impact on their ability to meet production goals, despite also ranking the high cost of materials and energy as top challenges (38%).

Production Health Is a Top Priority

Production health – combining machine, process, and operational insights – ranked second among top AI use cases, just behind supply chain optimisation (40% and 41%, respectively). 

Production health could actually help address the top three factors that manufacturers say could limit their ability to meet business goals over the next 18 months: outdated or unreliable equipment (19%), staffing constraints (18%), and unplanned downtime due to machine faults (16%). 

“It's time industrial leaders address existing hurdles while also considering how they can leverage AI as a job co-pilot, strategise for scalable success, and make meaningful progress in their sustainable production goals,” Yoskovitz added. “Organisations that embrace that strategy will lead the way, forge new workforce skill sets, reduce environmental impacts, and improve their bottom lines.” 

“The State of Production Health 2023” report features insights from 500 U.S. and Europe-based manufacturing executives (VP level or higher) at organisations with global revenues of $100M+. Represented manufacturing verticals include consumer packaged goods, food and beverage, paper and packaging, building materials, cement, wood, mining, oil and gas and chemicals industries.”

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