Manufacturers are facing yet another challenge in the 21st century market place, customers are moving at an incredibly fast pace and expect manufacturers to be able to keep up with their requests. Technology has drastically changed the way customers communicate with suppliers, and the flexibility technology offers should allow manufacturers to react to orders in real-time. Artificial intelligence (AI) is just one of technologies that give manufacturers the ability to keep up with the new pace of business.
If a quote takes days, or even weeks, to price, a customer will be able to look elsewhere and find a company that is able to provide the high level of service they are looking for with no issue. We will discuss how manufacturers can use AI to drastically improve the way they interact with customers while offering the best service possible.
Systems are getting more advanced and their applications continue to expand. If a manufacturer looks at their business and finds out where communication begins to slow down, they will be able to choose the best AI to offer more value to their customers as well as improve their overall manufacturing business.
AI is able to respond and answer customers questions instead of having to devote a person to the job. Imagine a system that can offer an estimated price on a quote by using information from previous jobs or AI having the ability to update a customer on where their delivery is at this very second. This may sound like science fiction, but it is quickly becoming a reality. Not only can AI benefit a customer, if there is a problem on the production line, AI can alert any essential personnel to the problem and even offer their own suggestion on how to rectify the issue in the most efficient way possible. Looking past the shop floor, AI can benefit a manufacturer’s supply chain as well.
Managers and manufacturers cannot be everywhere at the same time, they have daily tasks that need to be completed and can’t spend all day looking at traffic reports to see if their delivery routes are interrupted by road closings or port issues. AI lets manufacturers have eyes and ears on every aspect of their business. If a road is closed, the AI can relay this information to all necessary parties and suggest an alternative route to ensure the delivery reaches its destination on time. This is an incredible tool for manufacturers and their customers will greatly appreciate the efficiency and reliability of a manufacturer that makes use of the latest AI technology. A similar tool which can greatly improve the efficiency of a mobile workforce is GSMtasks’ multi stop route optimization software.
AI can also greatly improve the efficiency of a manufacturer beyond just keeping deliveries on schedule. More and more designers are beginning to create prototypes digitally, instead of the old model, using a sketch to create a 3D prototype and testing the product and then finally training the workforce to create the finished product for their customers. AI offers a new way to test products before a physical prototype is even created. New software allows AI to test a product while it’s still a digital model, ensuring everything will work and is able to be produced efficiently. Products can now go from a 3D digital rendering to a final product in fewer steps. The time and money this can save will be incredible for all parties involved. The AI can even explain the best way to package the product for delivery before a physical product is even created. Computers can calculate dimensions and figures exponentially faster than even the most intelligent human, so using this power is essential to keep up with today’s dynamic and fast paced market.
Looking toward the future, AI might have an even more profound impact on manufacturing and the supply chain. Autonomous vehicles are beginning to make it onto the road and the prospect of driverless trucks is too good to look past. A manufacturer might be able to utilize these AI controlled trucks to transport their freight like never before in history. Just think about the advantages a manufacturer can reap from a fleet of autonomous trucks. No more worrying about the lack of truck drivers, or shipments being damaged or lost because of human error, AI can eliminate all of these issues. Still there will be sometime before we see caravans of autonomous trucks making deliveries all over the country but the concept is there and proven to be possible.
AI offers manufacturers, customers, and the supply chain, a host of new benefits that were not possible before. Businesses will be able to keep up with customer’s demands and changes in real-time, and the supply chain will be incredibly more efficient and transparent. This technology is set to have an enormous impact on the efficiency of any business that begins to utilize AI throughout their operation.