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INSIGHTS FROM HAYS

Is Germany leading the way for industry integration?


Blurring the lines between IT and Engineering

Integrated industry was the lead theme at this year’s much-anticipated Hannover Messe in Germany. Those who attended the event were asked to consider the question: how might the industry evolve over the coming years in order to collaborate more efficiently with engineering processes at a production level?

 

Prior to the event, Dr. Jochen Köckler, a member of the Deutsche Messe Board of Management, had said that, "Machines, industrial equipment, work pieces and system components will soon be capable of exchanging data in real-time. This will significantly boost efficiency, safety and resource sustainability in production and logistics."

But what do the technological developments aimed at integrating these industries mean at a more practical level? What are the advantages of breaking down these sector boundaries and adjusting industry focus more towards being more process-orientated?

What is driving integration?

Here’s a brief overview of how many of those speaking at the Messe were predicting that the IT and engineering industries will evolve towards advanced integration in the not too distant future:

  • The rapid speed at which industry integration is expected to take place will necessitate a fundamental restructuring of production processes, creating potential job roles for those with the technical skills to facilitate this change.
  • Autonomous digital product memories will be developed to allow for continuous monitoring throughout the lifecycle of a product or part. So-called ‘intelligent components’ will then be able to make their own repair requests and report faults instantly.
  • IT professionals with the ability to implement such technologies will be key to driving engineering efficiency and, thus, industry collaboration and integration.

At the Hannover Messe’s Research & Technology Show, the need for early-stage interaction between industries at the R&D phase was also highlighted. Cross-sectoral networks were encouraged to use the event as a platform to develop and expand as industry integration progresses, and the opportunities for innovation increase.

While integrated industry may not yet have been fully realised, a move towards what is already being labelled as the next industrial revolution now seems inevitable. Integration would doubtless hold plenty of benefits for those working within relevant sectors by shortening communication channels and potentially providing additional job roles for those looking to develop their existing expertise.

 
 

 

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