Intelligent CIO Africa Issue 76 | Page 34

African manufacturers are turning to smart manufacturing , hoping to turn the shop floor into efficient , data-driven operations humming with precision , explains executives from Technodyn , Infor , Epicor .
Traditionally , the African manufacturing sector has been characterised by low levels of technological adoption and productivity . Furthermore , the focus was on labour-intensive industries such as textiles , food processing , and basic consumer goods . In recent years , this has changed , driven in part by the advent of the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the rapid IT and high-speed Internet connectivity penetration have contributed to significant changes in the industry as a whole .
What is driving change ?
According to Kate Queiroz , Chief Commercial Officer at Technodyn , the increasing use of technology in the African manufacturing sector can be attributed to several enabling factors .
Firstly , increased Internet connectivity . Internet access on the continent has grown exponentially thanks to smartphones being more affordable and broadband infrastructure more widespread . This makes integrating digital technologies into existing manufacturing processes easier and enables businesses to access critical information , collaborate efficiently , and make data-driven decisions .

As the global consumer and industrial landscape evolves , the continent is seen as a promising destination to expand manufacturing operations . The availability of more advanced technologies has contributed to manufacturing transformation across Africa , making it a focal point for investors and multinational corporations looking for expansion opportunities . This in turn has seen growth in job opportunities and economic development across several countries .

With this connectivity layer now in place , African businesses have turned to the cloud as a pivotal point to access their workloads , applications , and data .
Additionally , African governments have recognised the importance of IT in fostering economic growth and have implemented supportive policies and initiatives that drive its adoption and encourage investment . Some of these policies include the development of technology parks , the establishment of special

Selecting the right manufacturing solution for African shopfloors

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