How Technology Will Disrupt Your Business: 11 Questions to Ask

How Technology Will Disrupt Your Business: 11 Questions to Ask

Government and business leaders should ask themselves these 11 questions to reflect on the impact of technology and innovation in global

production systems.

What if…

1. The factories of the future are small, mobile,invisible and located in urban undergrounds?

2. The best robot on the factory floor is the technology-augmented operator?

3. You can track in real time the performance of every machine, employee and supplier in your network, as well as your products in the hands of the consumer?

4. You can produce at the same cost and quality anywhere in the world?

5. Your customers are willing to pay only for performance and all the value of your flagship products come from their digital and cognitive features?

6. With hyper personalization, do brands become irrelevant?

7. You can turn your recycled products into raw materials for a new production batch?

8. Technologies do not diffuse beyond select large producers and technology giants?

9. Over 80% of global production output is produced and delivered through contract manufacturing?

10. Technologies enable labor relations to become self-organized?

11. Technologies fail to deliver on their promised value?

The World Economic Forum (WEF) released a paper titled “Technology and Innovation for the Future of Production: Accelerating Value Creation” in March 2017 and asks these questions of business leaders. WEF maps the full chain of activities to “source-make-deliver-consume-re-integrate” products and services from origination, design manufacturing and distribution to customers and consumers incorporating principles of circular economy and reuse. Production fundamentally impacts economic structure at a global to local level, affecting the level and nature of employment, and the environment.

The Transformative potential of technology in production systems is widely recognized. Trends toward higher levels of automation promise greater speed and precision of production as well as reduced exposure to dangerous tasks; can help overcome stagnant productivity and make way for more value-added activity. The extent of automation, however, causing significant anxiety about issues of employment and inequality.

The new technologies of the Fourth Industrial Revolution have the potential to transform the global geography of production and will need to be deployed in ways that address and adapt to the impact of climate change. The WEF paper, prepared in collaboration with AT Kearney, explores the new technology landscape focusing on five technologies that will have the most immediate impact on production-related sectors. IT raises questions for CEOs, government leaders, civil society leaders and academics about the implications for individuals, companies, industries, economies and society as a whole, and as is intended to bring new perspectives and generate responsive and responsible choices.

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