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Integrate Artificial Intelligence Into Your Manufacturing Operations

Help your smart factory earn top grades with artificial intelligence.

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Contributors

  • Rob Wilson, Plant Manager, FPH Group
  • Robert Austin, Professor, Ivey Business School
  • Craig Pawson, Material Planner, Formet Industries
  • Rachel Hardman, HR Coordinator, Diply
  • Sue Hardman, Human Resources Consultant, Fanshawe College

Your Challenge

  • It is difficult to know where to start with an AI initiative.
  • There are a multitude of options for how AI can be implemented in manufacturing, making it difficult to decide on the ideal first AI initiative to undertake.
  • It’s hard to differentiate between vendor hype and realistic use cases for AI.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • Data governance capability is the gatekeeper to AI success.
  • There are an incredible number of applications for AI. Focus your time on figuring out what AI projects you are reasonably able to undertake to avoid option paralysis.
  • AI should be used to enhance the capabilities of your employees, not to replace them.

Impact and Result

  • Identify the initiatives you are currently capable of undertaking. The lifeblood of AI is good data. See how you can use your current data before you get overwhelmed with the possibilities AI offers.
  • Build the business case for AI around what is possible for your organization. Decide what you should be doing with AI based on what you are currently capable of doing.
  • Assess your current skills and identify where you will need help from vendors. Knowing when to look outside of your organization for help will be critical to your AI success.
  • Gain the support of the business by showing the quick wins your AI initiative will provide and the business pains it will help to solve. Provide regular communication on the progress of your AI initiative to ensure continued support from the organization.

Research & Tools

Start here – read the Executive Brief

Read our concise Executive Brief to find out why you should Integrate AI into your manufacturing operations, review Info-Tech’s methodology, and understand the four ways we can support you in completing this project.

1. Analyze capabilities & identify an AI initiative

Understand the types of AI projects that your company is able to undertake based on your current capabilities.

2. Build the case for AI & develop processes

Walk through selecting an AI initiative, building a business case, and understanding the value that vendors can offer.

3. Ensure long-term vision & support for AI

Gain long-term support for AI in your organization with the development of an AI project roadmap and communication plan.

Guided Implementations

This guided implementation is a seven call advisory process.

Guided Implementation #1 - Analyze capabilities & identify an AI initiative

Call #1 - Discuss current data sets, what you need from your data in order to run an AI initiative, and how AI can alleviate business pains for manufacturers.
Call #2 - Assess the results of Phase 1 activities.

Guided Implementation #2 - Build the case for AI & develop processes

Call #1 - Identify business pains specific to your company that “low-hanging fruit” AI initiatives could alleviate.
Call #2 - Discuss the role a business case plays in your AI initiative.
Call #3 - Understand how to go about choosing an AI vendor.

Guided Implementation #3 - Ensure long-term vision & support for AI

Call #1 - Identify key stakeholders and how the AI initiative will impact them.
Call #2 - Understand the benefits of an AI project roadmap and best practices for communications during your AI project.

Onsite Workshop

Discuss This Workshop

Book Your Workshop

Onsite workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn't enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our project workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a roadmap in place to complete your project successfully.

Module 1: Identify the AI Initiative That Best Fits Your Company

The Purpose

Assess the data you have to understand what kind of AI project you are capable of undertaking.

Key Benefits Achieved

Identifying and starting with an easy win will help ensure success and continued support in your organization.

Activities

Outputs

1.1

Assess data quality to identify data suitable for AI.

  • Identified high-quality data sets
1.2

Develop an AI initiative shortlist.

  • AI initiative shortlist

Module 2: Develop an AI Business Case

The Purpose

Evaluate your shortlist and choose an AI initiative that is aligned to your business needs.

Key Benefits Achieved

Identifying the business pain you want to alleviate is key to creating a sound business case for your AI initiative.

Activities

Outputs

2.1

Create a business pain mind map and rank your initiatives shortlist.

  • List of business pains AI can alleviate
2.2

Align your AI initiative with a business pain.

  • Chosen AI initiative
2.3

Brainstorm approaches to the AI initiative.

Module 3: Form a Long-Term Vision for the AI Project

The Purpose

Develop a long-term vision for the AI initiative.

Key Benefits Achieved

A defined vision and a sound business case will set you up for success.

Activities

Outputs

3.1

Carry out a cost-benefit analysis.

3.2

Do a risk assessment.

  • Draft of AI initiative business case
3.3

Identify key tasks.

  • Draft of AI initiative roadmap
3.4

Mind map project goals and metrics.

  • Defined goals and metrics

Module 4: Develop a Communication Plan

The Purpose

Identify key stakeholders and develop a communication plan to ensure stakeholder buy-in for the AI initiative.

Key Benefits Achieved

An AI initiative is more likely to be successful when it has executive support.

Activities

Outputs

4.1

Identify key stakeholders.

  • List of key stakeholders
4.2

Analyze the impact of the project for key stakeholders.

4.3

Develop a communication plan.

  • Communication plan for key stakeholders