Industry 4.0 has started making its way in Indian manufacturing, real estate, IT-BPM, and other sectors and is seeing increased adoption, with the COVID-19 pandemic accelerating the digitisation process.
According to a recent report by diversified professional services and investment management company Colliers, Revolutionised Sector- Emerging Economies & Markets, having digital technology at the core of everything can make a business more resilient, and faster to adapt to any headwinds.
The report aims at providing an insight to investors, manufacturers, developers, and policymakers to understand the present situation and plan for the future as Industry 4.0 concentrates on the end-to-end digitisation of all physical assets and their integration into digital ecosystems.
“India is at the cusp of a digital edge where young talent plays leading roles through their start-ups, and organizations are adopting technologies for a paradigm shift.
This is the era where Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, and Cloud Computing act, analyse and alert for the next steps of decision making,” said Ramesh Nair, Chief Executive Officer, India & MD, Market Development, Asia.
According to the report, Industry 4.0 will encourage a new age of connected technologies and data-driven insights and change the way people work and interact with each other.
Innovative technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), mass automation, industrial communications, Big Data, robotics, and 3D printing are transforming the global manufacturing landscape.
“We recommend developers to diversify and expand their industrial portfolio in segments like Cold Storage, Warehouse, Logistics, Robotics, Edge Data centres, etc. The focus should be to provide state-of-the-art infrastructure & technology usage,” said Subhankar Mitra, MD, Advisory Services (India).
Currently, Industry 4.0 is being applied in the heavy and light engineering industries, automobile and auto components industry to some extent. However, a more significant digital transformation is expected with greater application in the future, especially in the Data Centres segment, Defence sector, Aviation, and FMCG industries.
The report further highlights that there is a huge gap in digitalisation due to high investment, lack of adequate cybersecurity norms and infrastructure.
The report further added that companies should create 5-7-year strategies instead of 3-5-year business plans, wider policy reforms such as subsidies, tax breaks, higher budget allocation, corporate incentives & new government initiatives are needed apart from investment in the workforce to improve technical skills and increase employability.
“Telecommunications network and digital infrastructure to be strengthened to ensure global competitiveness and cost-effectiveness. Digital Transformation will spur productivity leaps in the next 15 years, requiring the manufacturer’s commitment to continuous improvement,” added Nair.
Overall migration to the Fourth Industrial Revolution is a complex procedure with organisations still in the early stages of preparation for 4.0. However, with more significant benefits of I-4 coupled with the government’s initiative of ‘Make in India’ and ‘National Policy for Advanced Manufacturing’ would play a significant role in augmenting the manufacturing sector’s share in India’s GDP by 25 percent by 2022.
Currently, advanced economies like Germany, Japan, the USA, and Singapore have embraced Industry 4.0 to increase their manufacturing competitiveness. At present, India lags behind its global peers in Industry 4.0 adoption.