Industry 4.0 is a popular movement within the engineering/ manufacturing sector which looks ahead to the augmentation of human and machine technology to drive performance.
And far from the machines overtaking people in the workplace, Industry 4.0 will augment human effort, rather than replace it.
It’s predicted that, by 2022, UK industry needs to recruit 1.8m engineers.
However jobs will change with many new roles emerging in app development, sensing, robotics, data analytics and virtualisation. Which means today’s employees need to develop new capabilities and embrace new tools and digital methods.
Many workforces also feature mature talent at one end, apprentices and graduates at the other, with a gap in the middle. To fill that industry needs to ensure the knowledge transfer takes place before older workers leave the industry.
What’s more, there’s a growing understanding that Industry 4.0 technologies are not just for the big firms. As we’ve often reported, it’s the UK’s SME manufacturing heartland that arguably has the most to gain and there’s now a growing understanding that elements of what we might call “industry 4.0” can be deployed at relatively low cost and deliver immediate benefits.