Having recently returned from weeks of event keynotes, customer roundtables, briefings and engagements (plus a few culinary adventures) in Greater China, I’ll start there with a few insights and observations. Despite one of the sharpest slow-downs in the Chinese manufacturing sector in recent history that have continued to shrink for the third consecutive month, I sensed an optimism and determination to persevere that haven’t waned, nor has China’s march to global leadership of manufacturing GDP. A recent report from Rhodium Group indicates the number of American workers employed directly by Chinese companies increased >five-fold over the last five years to >80,000 in 2014.
Automation and quality are key tenets driving China’s current growth strategies in manufacturing and the industrial sector. For Cisco this is creating continued demand for our Connected Factory portfolio of architecturally integrated solutions as a leap-frog approach to the legacy automation predominating U.S. and European factories. I certainly found to be the case at two conferences I keynoted—the 5th Annual Manufacturing Supply Chain Summit in Shanghai and the Industry 4.0 / Manufacturing Cloud Forum in Shenzhen—that many massive manufacturers are urgently implementing Internet of Things (IoT) and Cloud / Data Analytics projects as part of their competitive business strategies and differentiation. This key take-away and perspective that China is leading other top manufacturing nations on adoption of industrial IoT is validated by a recent analysis compiled by Infosys Ltd.
I’m back in the U.S. now, where we’re working back-to-back events in San Diego with RA TechEd 2015 this week, followed next week by Cisco’s own user conference, CiscoLive U.S. Although industrial markets in the U.S. may experience different stages in maturity, the same needs—as recently highlighted with IDC’s Customer Spotlight on Mahindra Chakan’s Automotive Factory of the Future—for digital manufacturing solutions that drive business outcomes leveraging improved operational efficiencies WITH improved operational flexibility. Manufacturing customers are turning to Cisco and our partners for prescriptive roadmaps on how to achieve real value from IoT: accelerating NPI, new services and growth; bolstering throughput and capacities; and reducing downtime, production cycles, inventories and costs.
At CiscoLive, we are demonstrating a full ‘Connected Factory Experience’ in the Internet of Everything pavilions at the World of Solutions. Our goal is to show how the Connected Factory of the future is driving amazing innovation and efficiency gains in manufacturing environments by enabling plant managers to optimize assets, workflows and operations on the plant floor with secure remote access to real-time information delivered in the right format at the right time from anywhere. In addition, we invite you to stop by the Industrial IP Advantage booth to see discrete and process automation demos and learn more about the eLearning program leading to a CCNA Industrial certification.
Stop by and see us at Cisco Live or join us for the virtual sessions online. Thanks for reading.