Subcon 2018, NEC, Birmingham, 5-7 June 2018, www.subconshow.co.uk
London UK, April 2018: Widespread ignorance of Industry 4.0 threatens to derail the competitiveness of UK manufacturing and engineering, according to figures released today by The Engineer in association with Subcon, the defining event in the manufacturing supply chain calendar.
When asked if they understood what industry 4.0 is, more than one in three (37%) UK manufacturing and engineering professionals said no, with a further 19% unsure. Even amongst those that answered positively, only 23% were certain that they had a handle on the concept with a further 22% positive but not sure.
However, the survey did reveal that even without high levels of confidence in their understanding of Industry 4.0, UK manufacturers and engineering businesses were investing in the technologies associated with the fourth industrial revolution.
Looking at the past 12 months:
Looking ahead to the next year:
“Looking at these figures, it is clear that UK engineering and manufacturing businesses understand the benefits of new technology, even if they don’t quite get the buzzwords,’ said Gordon Kirk, event director, Subcon. “This investment is being driven by the competitive issues of new product development and improving design and production processes.”
“The question that follows is whether or not these investments are delivering everything they could do. The educational programme at Subcon will help these businesses put their investment in context. This year we have a 36-session conference programme based over two theatres and Industry 4.0 and the development of digital manufacturing technologies forms a key part of the subject matter. We anticipate a lot of conversations around these technologies as businesses need to find out how to put their investments to work in creating competitive advantage.”
The survey of more than 500 UK manufacturing and engineering professionals was carried out by Subcon and leading industry trade magazine The Engineer. Subcon is the UK’s premier manufacturing supply chain show, taking place 5-7 June 2018 at NEC, Birmingham. Visitors can register for a free pass at www.subconshow.co.uk.
Do you understand what Industry 4.0 is?
Yes, definitely 22.5%
Yes, I think so 22.3%
Not sure 18.8%
Which of the following technologies have you invested in, in the past 12 months? Please tick all that apply
Simulation and CAD modelling 45.5%
Automation / Robotics 35.6%
3D printing capabilities 27.9%
New or enhanced enterprise software 27.5%
Internet of Things / cyber-physical technology 22.9%
None of these 18.5%
Other please specify 6.6%
I don’t know 3.8%
Which of the following do you plan to invest in over the next 12 months? Please tick all that apply
Automation / Robotics 34.2%
Simulation and CAD modelling 27.2%
3D printing capabilities 23.8%
New or enhanced enterprise software 23.6%
Internet of Things / cyber-physical technology 22.1%
None of the above 18.7%
I don't know 14.0%
Other, please specify 4.5%
Subcon is the UK’s only dedicated event for contract and subcontract manufacturing. It covers all sectors and technologies and allows subcontract manufacturing buyers to source suppliers, benchmark capabilities, and form new manufacturing partnerships.
A pass to Subcon gives visitors free access to The Engineer Expo, a brand new event dedicated to providing UK engineering professionals with the latest in-house manufacturing and design solutions, and Automechanika Birmingham.