Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Industry 4.0 - IIoT Technology - Industrial Engineering - Productivity Science

What dimensions, characteristics, parameters or variables of Industry 4.0 (IIoT) increase productivity. Industrial engineers have to identify these antecedents of productivity in their research studies. Then, in the productivity engineering activity, they can use the knowledge to create components, products, systems, machining, fabrication, forming, assembly, and maintenance processes to make them more productive.

An attempt is being in this note to collect propositions and hypotheses so far presented in various papers and articles. Please add to the collection by commenting on the article.

Industry 4. 0 IoT has to the potential to improve productivity

Industrial internet - connection between machines

Consumer internet - connection between people.

IoT approaches allow firms to fundamentally integrate, sensing, analytics and data control into engineering (manufacturing) and business processes.

Papers indicating that IoT has the potential to improve productivity

In the ongoing decade, productivity will be driven by internet of things.

IoT technology reduces cost of customization. Hence custom made products can be manufactured at lower cost.

Productivity Leap with IoT - Special Focus on Global Asset Management and Smart Lighting

2013 VTT Technical Research Centre Finland

Whether you interests are  motivated by cost savings or improved revenue, the IoT is uniquely positioned to help with both.

What you need to know about IoT:  The right information can change the world.

AT&T 2016 report

80 billion euros spent on IoT solutions will create a benefit of one trillion for the EU28 economy.

The value will come from three sources:

Increased productivity of business organizations (430 billion euros)
Savings in power etc. by consumers (300 billion euros)
Increase in health of people will provide more working time (210 billion euros)

Every euro spent can produce up to 12 euros benefit.

The Internet of Things: A New Path to European Prosperity

1Trillion opportunity

The first two (IT) waves gave rise to huge productivity gains and growth across the economy. While the value chain was transformed, however, products themselves were largely unaffected. Now, in the third wave, IT is becoming an integral part of the product itself. Another leap in productivity in the economy will be unleashed by these new and better products.

The third wave of IT-driven transformation thus has the potential to be the biggest yet, triggering even more innovation, productivity gains, and economic growth than the previous two.

Smart, connected products have three core elements: physical components, “smart” components, and connectivity components.

How Smart, Connected Products Are Transforming Competition
Michael E. PorterJames E. Heppelmann
Harvard Business Review, NOVEMBER 2014 ISSUE

Accenture estimates the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) could add $14.2 trillion to the global economy by 2030.

Arguably the biggest driver of productivity and growth in the next decade, the Industrial Internet of Things will accelerate the reinvention of sectors that account for almost two-thirds of world output.

Dimensions, Characteristics, Parameters or Variables of Industry 4.0 (IIoT) that  Increase Productivity.

*Low cost monitoring of products, equipment and persons

*Low cost control through software embedded in the product or the cloud

*Low cost optimization.

Smart, connected products can apply algorithms and analytics to in-use or historical data to dramatically improve output, utilization, and efficiency. In wind turbines, for instance, a local microcontroller can adjust each blade on every revolution to capture maximum wind energy.

How Smart, Connected Products Are Transforming Competition
Michael E. PorterJames E. Heppelmann

*Enabling  measurements in demanding conditions with low maintenance cost and without hindering production.

VTT has developed a solution for measuring temperature, inclination, humidity, strain and other characteristics from machines and inside structures (e.g. walls) at distances up to 10 m, without batteries in the sensor. The principle is based on powering the sensor with radio frequency energy waves and using the return transmission to read out the resulting data (see Link ‘Zero Power Sensor’). The IPR protected technology allows for several individually identifiable sensors to be operated in the same space.

*Energy-efficient communications

A platform has been developed for energy-efficient communications between mobile devices that identifies the most appropriate combination of technologies for different exchanges

*Maintenance when needed

The Internet of Things will help individual companies to limit the waste.  Products which are connected to the web can communicate how they're being used or their current status. This data will be used to schedule maintenance when it's really needed, instead of the current  set of relatively inefficient rules.

*Predictive analytics based on data collected on products will be used to reduce failures and improve product design. This will boost the efficiency of products and contribute to productivity in user organizations.

*The IoT will change how manufacturers and service companies interact with customers. Reliance on massive call centers and customer service departments will be greately reduced and  IoT enabled products will be directly connected to a service assessing their condition and taking relevant action.

*Smart lighting

*Smart heating

*Smart cities

* Machine level information system
Each machine can be aggregated into a single information system that accelerates learning across the machine portfolio.

Source: Industrial Internet: Pusing the boundaries of Minds and Machines, Peter C Evans and Marco Annunziata, GE, 2012

Drivers That  Facilitate Transition to Industry 4.0 Production Systems at National Level

WEF - The Readiness for the Future of Production Assessment (Industry 4.0) - 2018

The driver is the construct used for the assessment. Six drivers are used in the assessment,

Driver 1 -Technology & Innovation

Concepts of the Construct

Technology Platform
• Availability of ICT
• Use of ICT
• Digital Security & Data

Ability to Innovate
• Industry Activity
• Research Intensity
• Available Financing

Driver 2 - Human Capital

Concepts of the Construct

Current Labour Force
• Labour Force Capabilities
Future Labour Force
• Migration
• Education Outcomes
• Agility & Adaptability

Driver 3 - Global Trade & Investment

Concepts of the Construct

• Trade Openness
• Trade Facilitation and Market Access
• Investment and Financing
• Transportation and Electricity

Driver 4 - Institutional Framework

Concepts of the Construct

• Efficiency & Effectiveness
• Rule of Law

Driver 5 - Sustainable Resources

Concepts of the Construct

• Energy and Emissions
• Water

Driver 6 - Demand Environment

Concepts of the Construct

• Market Size

Consumer Base
• Consumer Sophistication

The Readiness for the Future of Production Assessment (Industry 4.0)

Key Hypotheses

The Readiness for the Future of Production Assessment (Industry 4.0) developed by WEF is
intended to stimulate discussion and advance further research.

There are two key hypotheses and working assumptions that are fundamental to the assessment’s framework that needs to be tested and researched over time.

1. The most important drivers of future readiness are Technology & Innovation, Human Capital, Institutional Framework and Global Trade & Investment.

2. Scale is not a prerequisite for future readiness.

Download the report - WEF - The Readiness for the Future of Production Assessment (Industry 4.0) - 2018

Examples of Productivity, Cost saving, Waste Elimination and Lower Cost of Products

Verizon is saving more than 55 million kWh annually across its 26 data centers by deploying sensors and control points throughout the data center by connecting wirelessly.

IoT Primer - Making Sense of the next Mega Trend - Goldman Sachs
Sep 3, 2014

Smart street lights equipped with sensors are saving cities energy and money by detecting pedestrians, cyclists and vehicles so that lights brighten and dim when they sense movement

IoT to identify and keep track of repairs on city roads.

State of the Market: Internet of Things 2016
Verizon, 2016

In heavy machinery, Schindler’s PORT Technology reduces elevator wait times by as much as 50% by predicting elevator demand patterns, calculating the fastest time to destination, and assigning the appropriate elevator to move passengers quickly.

 In the energy sector, ABB’s smart grid technology enables utilities to analyze huge amounts of real-time data across a wide range of generating, transforming, and distribution equipment (manufactured by ABB as well as others), such as changes in the temperature of transformers and secondary substations. This alerts utility control centers to possible overload conditions, allowing adjustments that can prevent blackouts before they occur.

 In consumer goods, Big Ass ceiling fans sense and engage automatically when a person enters a room, regulate speed on the basis of temperature and humidity, and recognize individual user preferences and adjust accordingly.

How Smart, Connected Products Are Transforming Competition
Michael E. PorterJames E. Heppelmann
Harvard Business Review, NOVEMBER 2014 ISSUE

Automation of HR Processes - Productivity in HR department and also time saving of employees

Industry 4.0 - IIoT Technology - Industrial Engineering - Productivity Science - Research Opportunities

The development of green IoT technologies (e.g., energy-efficient techniques or approaches that can reduce the consumed power by sensors).
Internet of Things: A Review of Surveys Based on Context Aware Intelligent Services
David Gil, Antonio Ferrández, Higinio Mora-Mora, and Jesús Peral
Sensors (Basel). 2016 Jul; 16(7): 1069.

Interesting Related Research and Issues

The Shaping of Ambient Intelligence and the Internet of Things: Historico-epistemic, Socio-cultural, Politico-institutional and Eco-environmental Dimensions

Simon Elias Bibri
Springer, 05-Nov-2015 - Computers - 301 pages

Recent advances in ICT have given rise to new socially disruptive technologies: AmI and the IoT, marking a major technological change which may lead to a drastic transformation of the technological ecosystem in all its complexity, as well as to a major alteration in technology use and thus daily living. Yet no work has systematically explored AmI and the IoT as advances in science and technology (S&T) and sociotechnical visions in light of their nature, underpinning, and practices along with their implications for individual and social wellbeing and for environmental health. AmI and the IoT raise new sets of questions: In what way can we conceptualize such technologies? How can we evaluate their benefits and risks? How should science–based technology and society’s politics relate? Are science-based technology and society converging in new ways? It is with such questions that this book is concerned. Positioned within the research field of Science and Technology Studies (STS), which encourages analyses whose approaches are drawn from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, this book amalgamates an investigation of AmI and the IoT technologies based on a unique approach to cross–disciplinary integration; their ethical, social, cultural, political, and environmental effects; and a philosophical analysis and evaluation of the implications of such effects.

Interesting Reports

The Internet of Things: Seizing the Benefits and Addressing the Challenges -OECD Report, 24 May 2016  (Management issues included in the report)

The Digitalization Productivity Bonus - Siemens Financial Services Report - 2017

Updated on 2018  18 January,

12 December 2017


  1. Search Google for "IoT dimensions productivity" without quotes 3,67,000 results are there. So it is an interesting topic for many.

  2. Industry 4.0 (IIoT) Productivity pathways - *Low cost monitoring of products, equipment and persons