The digital economy has progressed beyond the boundaries of gadgets and consumer devices. Today, businesses involved in different kinds of manufacturing and industrial production domains see an aggressive demand from their key markets to drive better efficiency and improved product quality by leveraging digital solutions.
The Internet of Things (IoT) has driven the transformation of traditional physical products and industrial establishments into intelligent devices. Smart factories have opened the doors for more innovative use-cases to be derived from the ecosystem. According to Ericsson estimates, in 2022, the world will witness over 29 billion connected devices with 18billion of them directly linked to the IoT ecosystem. This represents a huge opportunity for companies to leverage the capabilities of smart devices and embedded intelligence in their products to unlock better value for their customers and enhance their competence through operational excellence.
Predictive maintenance is one of the major areas where the IoT ecosystem can bring in significant changes to traditional product quality and performance. For beginners, predictive maintenance is the art of leveraging data and information generated by a diverse range of sensors fitted to devices or machine components, to predict patterns of wear and tear or signs of performance loss that may occur in the foreseeable future.
Studies estimate the global market for predictive maintenance will be worth over USD 23.01 billion by 2026.
Fueled by a desire for autonomous maintenance by end-users and the difficulty in enabling in-person physical inspection due to health scares like the pandemic, companies need to assure a longer and defect-free lifespan for their products. Predictive maintenance can take this ambition forward by leveraging intelligent data and information exchange capabilities of IoT devices across a range of domains like vehicles, factory equipment, utility infrastructure, smart home appliances, and much more.
Let us examine four ways in which predictive maintenance empowers brands to drive better product quality and improved customer experience
Lower maintenance costs
To remain competitive, businesses must not just focus on improving their sales but also have a comprehensive mechanism in place to lower their operating costs. For industrial establishments as well as businesses that operate with a large number of machinery or moving infrastructure, maintenance costs can be one of their biggest consumers of the annual budget. However, maintenance becomes more expensive if defects or performance drops are noticed too late, and replacing components or the machinery as a whole becomes the only solution then.
With predictive maintenance, the tables change in favor of the business. By proactively monitoring machine health via data through embedded sensors, companies can identify early signs of performance drops. This allows them to plan maintenance cycles well in advance and prevent machinery from having to work for longer periods with faulty components thereby eliminating the chances of larger failure events completely. Another great example from the consumer side would be the health of vehicles. Intelligent sensors embedded on different moving parts within a vehicle can constantly provide data to the car’s onboard diagnostics system. This will help owners identify any issues well in advance and take precautions to avoid expensive service visits later on when the damage becomes critical.
Assure availability and uptime
In the case of critical infrastructure like, for example, a data center or manufacturing assembly line, it is important to guarantee the availability and uptime of machinery to honor agreed deliverable quality and order fulfillment requirements. Predictive maintenance can be a major influence in this aspect. By enabling organizations to identify and rectify the defunct behavior of their critical infrastructure in advance, predictive maintenance can provide the assurance needed for sustainable long-term operations.
Ensure workplace safety
Working with large machinery can be a risky career choice. As employers, manufacturing and industrial organizations must enable a safe and legally compliant work environment for their staff. Predictive maintenance enables companies to navigate troubling compliance and workplace safety challenges by offering insights into potential risk scenarios well in advance. This allows companies to realign their workforce policies and facilitate maintenance to eliminate the chances of occurrence for the predicted risk.
Improve asset longevity
Predictive maintenance ensures that critical infrastructure and physical assets are proactively managed and checked for optimal performance. This occasional fine-tuning will improve the lifespan of assets as they would operate in ideal conditions only and at the most optimal operational cycles. Improving asset life can result in multiple cascading benefits of lower costs, the lesser requirement for machinery replacement, etc.
IoT technology has brought in sweeping changes for enterprise assets by turning them into connected and smart entities. The vast treasure trove of data that is produced can be channeled into predictive systems, which ultimately helps companies understand and implement the most optimal maintenance schedule for their physical infrastructure. Businesses need to identify the right tracks for data extraction and information management to feed predictive maintenance systems with insights.
This is where our consultants can make a difference. Get in touch with us to know more about how predictive maintenance can be a game-changer in your business.