COVID-19 has thrust forward the importance of operations as a C-level priority, as business continuity, remote operations management, and resiliency have become critical survival issues in the New Normal.
Looking into 2021, the issue now will become how to enable agile and resilient operations that can respond rapidly as global economies emerge from the pandemic.
“Critical here is the ability of production, supply chain, customer channels and product design functions to be more tightly coupled in delivering to the increasingly personalized demands of customers and markets,” says Emilie Ditton, associate vice president for Energy and Manufacturing Insights at IDC Asia/Pacific.
Leading organizations are already building capabilities within operations which allow them to take advantage of the accelerating volumes of data generated by equipment, processes, and people within operations – these capabilities will be critical to competitive advantage going forward.
The transformation of operations is all about the capability to manage resilience and very often real-time decision making across complex problems, and a spaghetti of siloed and overlapping applications.
This means building capabilities that bring together IT, enterprise architecture, and data capabilities with operations subject matter expertise (e.g. scheduling, asset operations, supply chain), and armed with the insight to reshape operational approaches for greater agility and flexibility.
IDC refers to this new group as digital engineering – and it is through enabling the right mix of digital engineering capabilities for the organization that the business will be able to deliver innovation taking advantage of industrial IoT, edge computing, AI, cloud-based platforms, and analytics to support the development of resilient operational strategies able to respond to market demands on an integrated basis with other critical parts of the business.
Future of Operations predictions:
By 2024, to support autonomous operations organizations will have increase their investments in data governance, Digital Engineering organizations, and digital operations by 40%.
By 2024, 50% of A2000 companies that have failed to develop digital engineering capabilities in operations will be unable to take advantage of remote monitoring managed services.
The number of new operational processes deployed on edge infrastructure will grow from less than 10% today to over 60% in 2024 as digital engineering accelerates IT/OT convergence.