Digital Transformation is at the core of current and future manufacturing transformation and is gaining momentum as an enabler for increased growth, profitability, flexibility, efficiency, quality and time to market.

With the impact of COVID-19 on business continuity and operations, industry is witnessing an acceleration in the adoption on digital technologies. We face both a critical milestone but also a unique opportunity that could define the future capabilities and competitiveness of our manufacturing industry. Manufacturing industry should be presented with the opportunity to integrate the digital technologies that will fulfil their most immediate needs without sacrificing or compromising their future digital growth and sustainability. Moreover, in current turbulent times we need, more than ever, to do so with tight and well dimensioned budgets.

Manufacturing is becoming increasingly connected, so digital transformation strategies are not only set in terms of individual factory performance improvement or optimisation. Digital transformation strategies are also set in terms of the ability to cost-effectively engage in collaboration with other factories, exploiting synergies, complementarities and emerging platforms and company ecosystems.

How digital technologies will be adopted and integrated by industry and how platforms and ecosystems will be shaped by digital industries will determine future individual business opportunities, collaboration patterns across industry and the resilience of manufacturing value chains. Manufacturing industry cannot afford to be simply presented with the next digital innovation unfolding. Manufacturing industry needs to proactively and openly collaborate to shape together industry 4.0 products, platforms, spaces and ecosystems to facilitate economies of scale, resilience, sustainability.

This manifesto presents the principles that lead our alliance, with the vision of building a winwin scenario for digital and manufacturing industries that will accelerate adoption of digital technologies, lower acquisition and operational costs, enable a balanced digital transformation at the speed of business growth and will leverage freedom of choice for best in class and best in value digital solutions.

01. Digital is everywhere, every factory is unique

Digital transformation is a mandatory call for every factory in Europe whatever its size and location. But every factory is a unique combination of people, product, services, processes and business models, and has reached a certain station on the path to digital transformation. The Digital Factory Alliance welcomes every company, wherever they are on their digital travel and will walk with you towards your destination. You are not alone in your trip.

02. The offer is infinite out there, but don’t let this overwhelm you

What does a factory need to start, improve or complete its digital transformation? Sensors, actuators, software, specific algorithms, robots, telecom or computing infrastructures? Moreover, it’s not only about machines, it’s also about people, especially about people, your workforce needs just-in-time, just-in-place, hands-on training. The market offer is tremendous and the choice is not easy. The Digital Factory Alliance with its team of honest brokers, neutral reference models, open international standards, labelling programmes and the experience gained over years of experimentation will guide you through this ocean of solutions.

03. Interoperability and standards instead of lock in

Being tied to a single provider is not a convenient solution for most factories and especially for SMEs which require greater flexibility and a tailored solution to stick to a tight budget. The Digital Factory Alliance is all for customised solutions to address unique challenges: we are collecting existing standards and promoting the definition of new ones to guarantee the interoperability of composable and modular systems that gather best of breed and best in value solutions, so you can make them work in your preferred way.

04. Define your goals and resources and let digital work for you

Which is the next station on your digital path? Where do you want to get? When do you need to get there? This is your homework as a member of the Digital Factory Alliance, but getting there is a trip we are going to do together.
Our digital decisions today should not be compromising the future of our manufacturing companies in terms of digitalisation costs, growth, collaboration or circularity. Being part of the Digital Factory Alliance will allow you purchase products and engage in platforms and ecosystem with the tranquillity that they have gone through the labelling programmes we endorse and that they respect the principles and interoperability guidelines adopted by the Digital Factory Alliance.

05. Build your digital future with the providers you trust

Walking along your digital path does not mean that you will need to do so with strangers. Being part of the Digital Factory Alliance will allow you to do so with those partners that have supported us to bring our business where they are today. However, the Digital Factory Alliance will allow us to invite new trusted partners, which share our vision for digital transformation, with innovative ideas, knowledge or products to enrich or accelerate our trip. The choice is ours and the path to take to our destination open. We are in control of our decisions.

06. Develop your digital shopfloor through experiments and evidence

The investment needed to bring factory shopfloor either to the next level of digitalisation and automation or to extend the useful life of your major capital investments and large industrial equipment is huge. Such investments cannot be afforded without a reasonable level of assurance that the integrated system is the adequate response to the objectives of the factory. Being part of the Digital Factory Alliance will allow you to engage in an active digital transformation dialogue, to learn from lighthouse factories, to become one and to access to a large network of experimental facilities specialised in a large portfolio of technology. They will allow you to test all the technologies you need and more importantly to do it at the speed of light to reduce the risk of new technology integration; so they work together flawlessly in your shopfloor.

07. Develop your digital capacities at the speed of business

Digital transformation is not only about technology, is about change and people, because a company is made by people. The evolution of your digital factory requires the evolution of your employees, their upskilling to operate in this advanced environment. Discover which are the skills and capacities that industry is nurturing and do not allow your factory to lag behind. The Digital Factory Alliance will provide you access to a rich offer of training courses and training factories close to you. With the access and support from the largest Global networks of Advanced Manufacturing and Digital Innovation Hubs, the Digital Factory Alliance will support your company to design and engage with the up-skilling and re-skilling programmes you need, to put your new manufacturing process in action; be it zero defect manufacturing, predictive maintenance.

08. Let data and human-centric AI drive you to profit

Data is a key factor in the development of human-centric collaborative artificial intelligence, enhanced decision support and value creation. Inside the Digital Factory Alliance, we have the opportunity of collectively design the principles to set our data assets, engage in the development of our industry commons and adopt shared data vocabularies and spaces to ensure that your factory is not left behind or apart from future data and intelligence economies and digital value chains.

09. Master the value of Zero-X Manufacturing

Be zero defect manufacturing, zero unplanned breakdowns, neutral energy factories or zero waste manufacturing, the value of zero is at the core of future manufacturing competitiveness. The Digital Factory Alliance firmly believes that our ability to design, ramp-up, operate and service Zero-X processes will define both our factory competitiveness and uniqueness. It is crucial to accelerate the adoption of Zero-X processes across the complete value chain. Through the Digital Factory Alliance digital missions, we can support your company to master the implementation of ZDM, predictive maintenance solutions over common digital infrastructures and manufacturing assets.

10. Digital for all

The Digital Factory Alliance believes in the need to develop resilient digital value chains and that there is no small digital dream to be left behind. The Digital Factory Alliance is there to nurture with manufacturing champions and SMEs their new digital value chains. We are here to support your factory in a soft digital landing and onboarding processes, so your factory is always fit for and never late to engage with these emerging digital value chains.