CEO UPDATE: Smart, Connected Operations Are the Future of Supply ChainsBy George W. Prest

Let’s talk about your company’s futureproof strategy to meet the challenges and opportunities of implementing the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) into your manufacturing and supply chain operations. Oh, wait. You’re not sure where to start?

You’re not alone. According to preliminary results from the survey MHI and Deloitte is conducting for the 2018 MHI Annual Industry Report, 60 percent of respondents say that IIoT is creating a competitive advantage and disrupting supply chains. Of the 80 percent that say these solutions will be part of their supply chains in five years, only 20 percent say they are utilizing them today.

These early adopters are successfully combining technologies to improve speed and agility and increase efficiency and visibility. These technologies are also helping to solve the increasingly difficult challenge of moving freight and deliveries in and out of urban areas. Where is your firm in its journey to take advantage of IIoT to create the kind of competitive advantage you need to survive and thrive in today’s on-demand, always-on economy?

This issue of MHI Solutions tackles this important topic, including best practices and real-world examples of how leading firms are creating smart, connected supply chain operations.

Another important resource on this topic will be the 2018 MHI Annual Industry Report, which will debut at MODEX 2018, an event we are also previewing in this issue. MODEX is industry’s largest supply chain expo showcasing 850 of the leading solution providers.

MODEX is where manufacturing and supply chain professionals come to discover the latest solutions and establish partnerships with key suppliers. They also come to learn about important trends and connect with their peers in over 100 conference, keynote and networking sessions. The event will be held April 9-12 in Atlanta.

MODEX 2018 will be the largest MODEX on record and, for the first time, the event will feature exhibits and education in both the B and C Halls of the Georgia World Congress Center. The new C hall show floor will include Solution Centers on smart city logistics and connected supply chain solutions and transportation and logistics solutions. MODEX is the best place in 2018 to learn how to take full advantage of innovative equipment and technology solutions to futureproof your supply chain. Learn more about MODEX starting on page 77.

While the transition to IIoT is complex, inaction is not a strategy. Ignoring these important developments will leave your supply chain and company at a severe disadvantage in the future—and the future is upon us.

I hope you enjoy this issue, and that it inspires you to innovate and take advantage of the exciting opportunities offered by IIoT.