Industry 4.0 for Small and Medium Enterprise (SME)
Micros, Small, and Medium Enterprises are vital in the Indian economic structure due to their significant contribution to the socio-economic development of India. It accounts for 40% of industrial output, 40% of the total exports, creates 1.3 million jobs every year, and has been able to employ around 120 million persons. About 20% of the MSMEs are based out of rural areas, generating large-scale employment for rural India.
Despite the social-economic impact of MSMEs, this sector faces challenges for access to capital, human capital, and technology.
In a highly competitive market, the greatest challenge for all MSMEs is to address the needs of the end customer, while keeping costs down. They have to ensure the product and service must remain high quality even when production amounts are low, the budget is limited, and profit margins are less.
This is the precise reason why MSMEs should focus on efficiency and opportunities to save. The operating expenditure saved can further be invested in retaining skilled resources or upgrading the infrastructure, or adopting the latest technology, contributing to further growth. Can efficiency in operation solve some of the current challenges? What are the opportunities to save? Can I4.0 solve the problems for SMEs?
What are the opportunities for savings with IoT?
Predictive maintenance is highly growing and gaining popularity as an approach that enables companies to
- Improve Energy Efficiency
- Track and reduce idle running of equipment while not in use.
- Track efficiency of equipment and Specific Energy Consumption of unit/plant.
- Production Optimization
- Decrease interruptions in production processes.
- Scheduling manual/autonomous operations.
- Improve Productivity
- Track machine conditions and reduce downtime.
- Monitor KPI to track production improve.
- Track anomalies in the production process and quality of intermediate products to reduce rejection of finished product.
- Condition-based maintenance (CBM).
- Analytics, Optimization of Maintenance schedules.
At present, more than 90% of SMEs in India do not have any technology to monitor assets, production, and energy consumption. Some of the SMEs rely on manual monitoring (inefficient and error-prone method)
Why SME should adopt I4.0
As compared to larger enterprises, SMEs lag significantly in terms of productivity. This is a direct result of inefficiencies in operations resulting from a lack of a data and technology-driven approach. Think of time and productivity lost when a machine breaks down, or energy lost due to an idling machine. With IoT solutions, these inefficiencies and similar cases can be easily identified and acted upon fast. Monitoring the operations parameter is the first step to improve them. Most of the time it is only a matter of capturing and analyzing the data already available from VFDs, Smart Meters, PLCs, etc.
IoT Application and Benefits
IoT Energy Management
Data is collected from all devices in a process at regular intervals.
The recorded data is structured to build time-based trends and identify parameter relationships.
The recorded and analyzed results are compared to a baseline to find the variance. The baseline is often derived by identifying the best fit line on the production-consumption graphs.
The causes of variance are then identified by energy efficiency specialists in collaboration with building managers.
IoT Enabled Maintenance for SMEs
Assets build the foundation for any business. We can understand the performance, faults, causes, and effects of the equipment on a much wider and more detailed aspect by the data from connected equipment in machinery . SMEs most often don't have a dedicated team for maintenance of operation technology, with IoT monitoring SME will have a virtual engineer available to continuously monitor and plan maintenance schedule.
Benefits of Asset Management
- Increase the value of the asset by improving performance and enhancing life.
- Optimizing cost and reducing risk to unplanned downtime.
- More efficient business processes and great overall agility.
- The first step for predictive maintenance.