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Smart manufacturing in backend process vital for business growth

Last update: 08/05/2019
KUALA LUMPUR, May 8 (Bernama) -- Companies, especially those in the electrical and electronics manufacturing industry, are encouraged to adopt smart manufacturing in their backend process to reap the potential benefits of digitalisation, said SEMI Southeast Asia president Ng Kai Fai.

In line with the Fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0), he said digitalisation in business was important in ensuring the companies are a step ahead of their competitors, whilst at the same time enabling them to reduce cost of production, improve productivity and increase yields.

So far, the highly sophisticated adoption of smart manufacturing had been implemented at the frontend while companies are now starting to understand the need for technology in backend operations and invest into them, he said.

“The adaptation of automation, data, advanced planning system, artificial intelligence as well as other technologies (can) make manufacturing smarter.

“(This) means, there is less human interaction (in the entire process) and everything (including mistakes) can be traced from the start of the production to the end, so it is important for companies to adopt smart manufacturing,” he said.

Ng was speaking to reporters during a media tour to a smart factory pavilion featuring smart equipment, robotics and automation, as well as interactive augmented reality and virtual reality, which was held at the SEMICON Southeast Asia 2019 trade fair here, today.

He said given the complexities of integrating Internet-of-Things platforms into traditional ecosystems, industry players were shying away from fully leveraging on smart manufacturing solutions.

“The frontend process is pretty standard, but backend is much more complex as it requires different types of machines for testing, assembly and others.

“Because of the complexity, there is some limitation of how much a company can adopt automation, causing more interdependence on human interaction where people do make mistakes sometimes,” he explained.

Ng said companies should not be afraid to start taking the “baby step” into digitalisation and must get rid of the mentality of “having high investment for adoption” in order for them to grow further.

“If we continue to do the traditional stuff, we will never be able to upgrade our value chain entirely.

“Smart manufacturing is no longer about the question of when (to adopt), it is a must,” he added.


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