INVESTIGATING INDUSTRY 4.0 READINESS IN THE SWEDISH MANUFACTURING SECTOR

University essay from Göteborgs universitet/Graduate School

Abstract: Industry 4.0 is the fourth, most recent industrial revolution, and refers to the integration of thedigital and the physical world in a manufacturing environment. Since first introduced in 2011,Industry 4.0 has gained significant academic and industrial attention. Due to the novelty of theconcept, however, there are many areas that are yet to be properly covered in the Industry 4.0literature. One area on which numerous calls for additional research have been made is Industry4.0 readiness, which refers to the assessment of a company’s degree of readiness for a full-scaleadoption of Industry 4.0 and its surrounding technologies.In order to respond to these calls for additional research, this study evaluates the Industry 4.0readiness of a company in the Swedish manufacturing sector using a qualitative approach. Theevaluation is based on a recently developed analytical framework which focuses on eightenabling technologies of Industry 4.0. In order to gain a more holistic understanding of thecompany’s Industry 4.0 readiness, a range of organizational barriers are also examined.The empirical findings reveal a varying degree of presence of the enabling technologies at theinvestigated company, consequently resulting in a degree of Industry 4.0 readiness of 63.2 %.An alternative degree of readiness is also calculated, taking into consideration the relativeimportance of the enabling technologies for the company. Finally, lack of an Industry 4.0strategy, the existence of competency traps, limited financial support, and lack of internalcollaborations are identified as the major organizational barriers to an increased Industry 4.0readiness. By addressing these, it is argued that the company can facilitate their overall workwith Industry 4.0 and thereby increase their readiness for a full-scale adoption of Industry 4.0.

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