People in businesses and manufacturing units are generally involved in their day-to-day work activities. It is difficult for most businesses to keep track of technological innovations in their industry. In the last few decades, there have been rapid changes in the mechanical engineering and robotics technology. Implementing the change and getting proper return on investment is difficult. Manufacturing businesses need to adapt and upgrade to remain viable.
Upgrading to new machinery using the in-house resources is challenging and time consuming for every business. The in-house resources are not acquainted with proper implementation of new technology. Whenever there is a shift of technology in the industry, the businesses are advised to hire qualified consultants to assist them in this endeavor.
Implementing new technology in a business is a niche task which requires specialized skills. Consultants can suggest and get regular assignments for technology and machine upgrading consulting. The consultants can help businesses implement technology in a profitable way. Therefore, it is advisable for consultants to keep learning and be updated with latest innovations in their industry vertical.
Listed below are some ways for consultants in which they can help the businesses with correct implementation of new machinery and technology:
1. Learn Practical Implementation of Technology in other Business Verticals:
Upgrading to new technology is more of an art than science. Every business has a unique process of functioning. There is a different way to upgrade the machinery in a printing industry as compared to an automobile industry. Before taking on a technology & machine upgrading project, a consultant should learn the practical implementation of technology within various businesses.
The consultant should be well-versed with implementing a new technology. He should modify the process within the facility. He should assess the possible impact of technology upgradation in the business. Businesses may have limiting factors like floor space, power availability, skilled manpower shortage, assembly line restrictions, etc.
In addition, a consultant’s work is not complete only after implementing the changes. The employees and workers at client’s organization should be assisted to adapt to the new technology introduced by the consultant. The consultant should try to implement a new technology or machinery without disrupting the business operations.
2. Modify the Technology/New machines etc. to suit the Business of the Clients:
New machinery, as it is available in the market, is not ready for use in the business. Every new machinery requires certain modifications before its installation. Besides, some businesses may require the scaled down versions of the new machinery with a combination of both automated and manual processing.
A consultant should determine all the necessary modifications to be made in the new technology or machinery. He should be able to provide the business owners with quick steps to turn the new machinery into an asset that blends with the existing infrastructure.
3. Solutions to problems in Business using new Machines/Technology:
The next step for consultant is to guide his clients on solving their business problems using the new technology. It is the role of a consultant to introduce the latest solutions in the business of his clients. His solutions should be based on the vision of the future and as an improvement on the processes currently being followed.
As soon as a new innovation is announced in the industry, the consultant should touch base with the business owners and suggest appropriate actions. Timely investment in a technology/machinery is always fruitful for the businesses in the long run.
4. Erosion in Value of older Technology Machines:
With rapid evolution in technology, the older machines are seeing value erosion as soon as a new model is launched. There are many examples of such machines. 3D printing machines are seeing the fall in prices at unprecedented rates. Similarly, more and more coupled motors are being used in the chemical industry and standalone gear boxes are being sold for a pittance. With the advent of electronic calibration and lab equipment, the highly priced mechanical balances are being discarded away as Junk.
In the cinema industry, costly mechanical sets are being replaced by animated backgrounds and special effects. It has completely ruined the business of old technologies. A consultant can better guide a business about the life of the machine. He can help the business or industry to keep abreast of latest innovations and get out of technologies that are on the verge of obsolescence. He can be the best person to plot the ROI before any expansion is planned.
5. Remote working and Outsourcing operations using Technology:
Technology has facilitated and made remote working very easy. Cloud servers and remote access tools are available pretty cheap today. Version control makes it possible for the software developers to work 24×7 from around the globe. Similarly, in time sensitive news gathering activity, all the TV Channels and News distributors are now technology driven.
The consultant should introduce the benefits of remote working and outsourcing operations to his clients. It is beneficial for businesses to outsource some in-house operations that are costly and time-consuming.
For instance, it is not necessary for every small & medium sized business to have their own IT department. Outsourcing the IT work is much more affordable for these businesses. With remote support technology, businesses can easily outsource the support work.
Practical steps for a Consultant
A Consultant is advised to keep a list of his clients. He should classify them by their technology domain and economies of scale. Keeping in view the size of organization, quality of manpower and adaptability to new technology, the consultant should suggest relevant solutions.
He should suggest upgrades and capital expenditure with details of ROI and payback periods. This is a sure shot way for the consultant to keep himself engaged for the rest of his life. Without having to wait for clients to come looking for him.
A Consultant has to be an avid reader. He should always be looking out for new technology, machines and new methods. His focus should be on improving the working at all his clients establishments. He should be like an alert watch dog and sniff at options on a continuous basis.