People and Technology Collaboration During 4IR by WEF

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Radu Palamariu, Managing Director Asia Pacific of Alcott Global and Francisco Betti, Head of Shaping the Future of Advanced Manufacturing and Production at World Economic Forum once again collaborated to share in an article posted on WEF some of their insights on “How 4IR is Encouraging the Development of People, Not Just Machines.” 

Demand growth over the pandemic years has accelerated the digital transformation of the logistics and supply chains industries that started decades ago, and the rhythm of innovations can only increase its pace. New technologies such as Artificial Intelligence, Digital Twins, and Robotics Process Automation are leading to new business models with the applications of technologies to increase visibility, efficiencies, cost, sustainability in the logistics industry, and at the same time create new and unique opportunities that will generate new jobs and growth for society. Though the rise of the new age will also mean that some jobs will be lost due to technological development, people should not fear it. As one goes away, another opportunity arises. 

With different innovations and developments, people will have the chance to rethink how to source, produce, deliver, and consume- the four essential processes in the supply chain. For businesses and manufacturers, the number one priority should be people, talent, and skills. 

In the article by the World Economic Forum, they listed three manufacturing best practices that will optimize both the skills of people and the use of machines. 

Attracting and engaging talents

The fight for attracting talent in the industry has been a long ongoing battle. Companies are doing everything to get the right people to join them, but how does one identify the right talent? Technology is ever-changing, every year there are new innovations, systems, and platforms coming out from all facets of the industry– or the whole world. As this happens, the principles and criteria of tech changes and in connection, the talents needed. The number one priority of attracting and engaging talents is making sure that the technology adoption will be facilitated well and given the right attention. 

Upskilling and reskilling

With technological and digital advancement, talents need to learn new skills to be able to adapt to the changes. What one has learned five or ten years ago may not be as relevant today- that is why executives iterate how important continuous learning is. When new opportunities come, organizations should allot time and resources to help their talents and employees upskill and reskill.

Building and strengthening supply networks

Building relationships is important in any industry. Having support is something that has become a necessity, especially during this period. In the article, it is mentioned how critical it is for companies to have suppliers onboard and develop support skills across the supply network. Different departments inside an organization need to work together to give a better experience to customers. Breaking the silos within organizations is going to be an important process in strengthening supply networks.

“In this new age, the most successful companies will be those approaching the future of manufacturing and operations with a human-led and a human-centered approach. “

The accelerated digital transformation will for sure be a source of imminent and constant changes. The best practice for any supply chain organization is to find the balance between developing people and talents, leveraging technology for optimizations while making sure to have the right people with the right talent and skills.

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