Friday, June 8, 2018

Smart Manufacturing Community Comes Together With MESA

This blog is a MESA Member Point of View

By: Patricia Panchak

MESA International (Manufacturing Enterprise Solutions Association) is creating a community of manufacturing professionals to explore five common Smart Manufacturing initiatives that it identified in a recent survey. The Association launched the effort at a workshop called “Seeking Common Ground for Smart Manufacturing,” held at the MESA North American Conference, in Raleigh, North Carolina.

The community is open to join for members and non-members, and will give manufacturing operations and information technology professionals a venue in which to explore opportunities and successful strategies. A focus of the groups will be sharing current state-of-the-art learning and stories about successful projects and initiatives. The community of MESA members have the opportunity to work together in a safe space to evolve their strategies and build connected Smart Manufacturing ecosystems and value chains. 

Conrad Leiva, chair of MESA’s Smart Manufacturing Working Group and vice president of product strategy and alliances at iBASEt, got the workshop conversation started by sharing initial results of a survey on the topic. Conducted in partnership with IndustryWeek, the survey was designed to establish the current state of the drive toward Smart Manufacturing, including identifying shared goals and terminology. Full results of the survey will be published soon at

For the workshop, attendees divided into small groups to discuss issues around one of five common initiatives identified in the survey: 
  • Smart Connected Factory – IIoT, smart machines, robotics, augmented reality
  • Analytics – predictive, prescriptive, Big Data, AI, machine learning
  • Manufacturing Systems – MES/MOM
  • Connected Supply Chain
  • Enabling new business models – e.g., product-as-service, mass customization, IoT data services for products, on-demand 3D printing, etc.
Leiva said MESA’s goal is to grow the community and connect the entire manufacturing value chain around these initiatives. “The more you work with peers in the industry to align these goals and agree on how to exchange data and orchestrate the value chain to realize the vision, the more likely that these goals will be achieved earlier rather than later,” Leiva said. 

He added: “We figure that getting people together that are making progress on these initiatives and people just getting started will provide a valuable outcome to everyone. We want to move from talking about Smart Manufacturing to making significant progress on the journey.”

To join MESA’s Smart Manufacturing Research Community, visit here 

Not a member of MESA? New members can get a Full Access Membership for their first year for only $295, this offer is normally $995. To take advantage of this offer, sign up for a basic membership for $295 here. Enter SMRESEARCH in the referral field during the application process and we'll upgrade you to a Premium membership at no additional cost. If you have questions about your membership, please email Abigail Zieger.

Want to become a sponsor of this important research and reach a dedicated network of professionals who are on their digital journey, click to see the prospectus.

Patricia Panchak is an independent business journalist, editor and public speaker. She can be reached at

No comments: