By

Ravi Gopinath

Ensuring continuity of operations in a rapidly changing world can be hard to achieve and even harder to maintain. Evolving supply chains, the need for

sustainability

and changing consumer habits continue to cause disruptions that can destabilise even the most robust business ecosystems.

This has spurred enterprises of all sizes to embrace digital transformation faster than ever before.

AVEVA

research has revealed that 85% of businesses plan to accelerate their investment in this area over the next five years, which will help them improve operational sustainability, agility and resilience by unlocking the performance benefits of automation, artificial intelligence (AI) and big data analytics.

Two thirds of organizations believe they’re already on the journey to realizing Performance Intelligence – how AVEVA defines the capacity to harness data-led insights so people can maximize sustainable value across assets, processes, locations and organizations – in order to realize key sustainability goals, become more agile, and empower teams by connecting their workforce with better collaboration tools and real-time shared data.

This article takes look at just five of the ways Performance Intelligence can transform your business, helping it to evolve to meet both the challenges and opportunities of today and tomorrow.

1 – Enhancesustainability

Sustainability is at the forefront of industry leaders’ minds, with nine out of ten industrial businesses committed to achieving net-zero carbon emissions within five years, according to a recent AVEVA survey. Performance Intelligence can help improve sustainability through the use of collaboration tools, real-time data and predictive analytics that provide greater visibility to track and optimize sustainability metrics.

Two thirds of organizations believe the ability to share data sets across teams in real time will have the greatest impact on sustainability, while significant sustainability gains can also come from solutions such as data monitoring and asset optimization.

Take Neste for instance. The world’s largest producer of renewable diesel and jet fuel is using optimization to help it move closer to its target to become carbon neutral by 2035 by improving efficiencies and lowering waste.

“We need to use technology to transform every aspect of what we do so that we can operate more efficiently and drive sustainability throughout every aspect of our operations,” says Salla Ahonen, Vice President, Sustainability at Neste.

2 – Identify problems before they occur

Organizations want their operations to run smoothly, and the best way to do that is to identify problems before they occur.

This is the power of Performance Intelligence. It enables predictive maintenance through improved data capture and analysis across the manufacturing process, helping staff improve maintenance schedules and lower costs while also cutting unplanned downtime.

3 – Drive performance

The majority of companies understand that combining advanced technologies like the industrial internet of things (IIoT), cloud, AI, and machine learning (ML) with their teams’ human insights is key to driving better performance across the organization.

Connecting people, processes and assets empowers teams with real-time situational awareness that not only improves decision making and productivity, but also asset reliability and performance. In turn, improved performance offers key sustainability benefits through reductions in energy, waste and emissions.

Kellogg’s Performance Intelligence system, for example, analyzed energy usage and identified opportunities to lower it. This led to $3.3 million in annual savings, and an additional $1.8 million in rebates, in one plant alone.

4 – Create a connected workforce

It’s no secret that data-led innovation is already transforming how workers perform critical jobs, with automation freeing them from simple, repetitive tasks to focus on those that require more creative thinking, people skills and fine judgement.

With one in three employees expected to continue working from home,

digital workforce solutions

are more important than ever before. However, a connected workforce is about much more than supporting our new hybrid way of working.

Digital transformation and performance intelligence is as much about empowering people and shaping the skills of the future as it is about technology.

As part of a four-year strategic program, Veolia Water Technologies implemented a cloud-based, data-centric engineering platform to connect and empower its teams and unlock further efficiencies.

The results included increased efficiency and collaboration between multi-disciplined engineers and enhanced project transparency and status tracking, which in turn drove improvements in business agility.

“Cloud-based and data-centric engineering enables our teams all around the world to work remotely, yet together, on one platform that spans all of our engineering data,” says Thomas Chelan, Projects Performance Director at Veolia Water Technologies.

“It’s fundamental for our staff to work in a collaborative way, in real-time, all along the design and build phases. Efficient access to data is key to boost operational performance and achieve our strategic objectives.”

5 – Benefit from data as a commodity

The amount of industrial data being collected and gathered by companies is roughly doubling every two years – this year alone it’s estimated that 74 zettabytes of data will be created, captured, copied and consumed.

With this in mind, it’s easy to understand why data has become such a hugely important commodity.

Sharing accurate information across the business is shown to drive higher performance and sustainability, and is therefore key to competitiveness and profitability.

But there are also benefits to sharing data more widely. A great example comes from Gwinnett County’s Department of Water Resource. By making intelligent use of data from edge to cloud – including targeted data sharing with external organizations – it has been able to ensure the community has consistent, reliable access to water.

For example, by sharing data with the county’s emergency operations control center, the department is able to closely monitor and quickly respond to events such as extreme weather or natural disasters that could potentially cause a disruption to its service.

Transform your business with Performance Intelligence

Human insight, creativity and experience will continue to be essential to the success of every business, but when paired with the scope and scale of the cloud, the predictive capabilities of machine learning and AI and the connectedness of IIoT, what you can achieve is elevated to a new level.

Performance Intelligence enables companies to optimize maintenance, minimize downtime, conserve energy usage and drive sustainable operations. Organizations that choose to accelerate their digital transformation will unlock the performance benefits of advanced technology to gain efficiencies and improve sustainability.

Isn’t it time to see how your business could be transformed?

The author is Chief Strategy Officer and Chief Cloud Officer at AVEVA