Industry 4.0 is changing the nature of manufacturing. From IoT and AI to wearables, advanced robotics and 3-D printing, the strategic pillar of manufacturing that is Industry 4.0 is completely transforming the factory floor. Over the past five years, A.T. Kearney has helped hundreds of manufacturers ensure they’re on the right track to be competitive in Industry 4.0. However, one thing is often missing: the ability to measure and digitize the tasks that humans perform.

The machine workforce has lots of detailed measurement options: digital twin simulations, drone-based cycle counting, predictive maintenance, anomaly detection, etc. But measurement around human tasks is significantly more cloudy, and that means there’s a gap in most digital transformation strategies. We have helped an array of companies around the world find ways to shrink that gap, but there was no comprehensive solution to do so – until now.

When we discovered Drishti’s ground-breaking technology, we knew we had found an unprecedented way to address the 100-year-old problem of measuring human tasks on the factory floor. Using artificial intelligence, machine learning, and computer vision, Drishti turns human actions into valuable data.

The State of Human Analytics

This fall, we joined forces with Drishti to gather insights from about 100 manufacturing leaders to learn how they measure human tasks and what challenges they face in collecting reliable data. Our research uncovers compelling information about the state of human analytics in manufacturing:

  • Despite the hype around factory automation, the human contribution to manufacturing is indisputable. People perform 72 percent of the tasks and create 71 percent of the value.
  • Companies are feeling the pain of variability caused by their human workers: 73 percent of variability on the factory floor comes from people, not machines, and 68 percent of defects are caused by humans.
  • Even though 71 percent of manufacturing leaders believe time and motion studies are very or fairly important data sources, 43 percent aren’t confident in the data these studies yield.

What this means is that digital transformation strategies must extend to the last analog frontier: humans. Drishti makes it possible to create massive datasets about human tasks. Together, we are creating and launching ambitious digital transformation strategies that arm manufacturers with valuable insights about their labor force.

How would your digital transformation strategy change if you could generate as much data from your people as you do from your machines? For more information, see The State of Human Factory Analytics, a report from A.T. Kearney and Drishti.

Michael Hu is a partner for the Americas in the Operations and Performance Transformation Practice of A.T. Kearney, a leading global management consulting firm. He can be reached at michael.hu@atkearney.com.