Manufacturing Survey: 'Industry 4.0' Taking Over

Posted: Updated:

A co-author of the 2018 Indiana Manufacturing Survey says the results show the industry's health is "in the best shape ever." Indiana University Kelley School of Business Associate Professor of Operations Management Mark Frohlich says the Industry 4.0 -- a fourth generation of manufacturing that is more focused on technology and data -- is in full force throughout the state. The survey, commissioned by Indianapolis-based accounting firm Katz, Sapper & Miller and conducted by IU Kelley faculty at IUPUI, shows the top concern among leaders from throughout the state is investment in technology, facilities and machinery. Workforce development concerns were raised by respondents, but appeared at the lowest level in a decade.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Frohlich the top issues expressed by manufacturers large and small are interconnected. "Your workforce -- each individual is such a special person to have on your team. This is nothing like what they were doing in the '70s and '80s where you'd put automation in and then, you know, fire or lay-off a bunch of people and the robots would take over," he said. "Now, the automation is put where either people might get bored working or it could be dangerous." Situations where automation can be seen now, Frohlich added, include heavy lifting, painting, grinding and movement of materials.

Recommendations to manufacturers include a need to upskill current employees, "aggressively recruit" high school students and advocate for the importance of the industry to all Hoosiers.

Frohlich added "this survey shows that manufacturing is strong in Indiana, but the state can't take its position for granted. Issues such as regulations and tariffs, healthcare reform and the workforce shortage must be addressed if Indiana manufacturers are to maintain their competitive strength."

You can connect to the full results, which also breaks down top industry types including automotive, industrial equipment and aerospace and defense by clicking here.

In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Indiana University Kelley School of Business Associate Professor of Operations Management Mark Frohlich says the top issues expressed by manufacturers large and small are interconnected.
  • Perspectives

    • The Race for a Winning Credit Score

      It’s May in Indy and the sound of revving racecar engines signals good times to come. But try to keep your spending under the yellow flag. Overspending on credit cards during the festivities could turn that May engine roar into a dreaded credit score “dent” come June. That’s not a great way to kick off summer. Here’s what to watch out for so your credit score will be a winner! FICO Credit-Scoring System The FICO (Fair Isaac Corporation) is the most...


Company Name:
Confirm Email:
INside Edge
Morning Briefing
BigWigs & New Gigs
Life Sciences Indiana
Indiana Connections


  • Most Popular Stories

    • (photo courtesy of Pac-Van)

      Pac-Van Makes Another Acquisition

      Indianapolis-based Pac-Van Inc. is once again adding to its portfolio. The storage and office space provider has acquired the assets of Kentucky-based Pier Mobile Storage, though financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

    • (photo courtesy Parkview Health)

      Hoosier Hospitals Among 'Best Places to Work in Healthcare'

      Seven Indiana hospitals are featured on Modern Healthcare’s list of Best Places to Work in Healthcare. The publication says honorees on the list were selected for their ability to “stand out in their efforts to create an empowered and satisfied workforce.” 

    • Photo courtesy of Portillo's

      Portillo's to Open Fort Wayne Location

      Portillo's Restaurant has announced it will open a new 7,800-square-foot restaurant in Fort Wayne. The location will be near the Glenbrook Square Mall and is slated to open in late 2019. 

    • Greenwood Mayor Mark Myers

      Mayor: Cummins Project Will Have 'Huge Impact'

      The mayor of Greenwood says a planned investment from Columbus-based Cummins Inc. (NYSE: CMI) for a new office in the Johnson County city will have a huge impact. The engine manufacturer announced Thursday it is investing $35 million to construct an digital and information technology hub near I-65 and County Line Road, which will house some 500 workers, with many earning six-figure salaries. In an interview with Inside INdiana Business Reporter Mary-Rachel Redman...

    • (photo courtesy of Reid Health)

      Reid Health To Acquire Fayette Regional Health System

      Reid Health has entered into an agreement to acquire the assets of Fayette Regional Health System of Connersville. The announcement comes after Fayette Regional filed for protection under Chapter 11 in October 2018. Specific terms will be disclosed in the bankruptcy case and will include a $12.75M payment to the bankruptcy estate of Fayette. The deal requires bankruptcy and regulatory approval and is expected to be finalized in mid-July this year.