Long-term market success requires a forward-looking understanding of changing customer needs that go beyond the technical features of the machines and plants. Challenges towards digitalisation and changing market conditions require flexibility and agility in all relevant areas of a company.
Project management in mechanical and plant engineering is a complex task in which all areas – from purchasing to design and assembly – must be monitored and planned centrally.
In mechanical and plant engineering, the level of complexity increases with the combination of purchased parts and self-manufactured parts. A machine and plant manufacturer, therefore, often requires extensive project management. This is because it is usually not only the production itself that is affected by the issue of complexity. Upstream and downstream stakeholders – such as purchasing or design – also have a significant influence on a project’s smooth running. Especially in assembly, it is crucial that all parts are available in the right place and at the right time. That is why it is important that mechanical and plant engineering is able to implement uniform planning – from project planning and design, to external assembly and commissioning.
Digitisation and Industry 4.0 are highly relevant for mechanical and plant engineering, both from the perspective of the digitised products and services provider, and the user in internal processes. In the context of digital networking, for example, cyber physical systems, big data, artificial intelligence, predictive maintenance, digital assistance systems and other digital technologies are playing an increasingly important role for mechanical engineering. Digital business models and new competitors from the “platform economy” pose an increasing number of challenges for mechanical engineering companies.
Digitised solutions and data-based services open up new business options that have the potential to noticeably and sustainably increase the companies’ competitiveness. However, modernisation and digitalisation can only succeed if the necessary internal processes are in place.