We are living in an era of digital transformation. The whole transformation was brought about when the analog information was converted into digital data. Digitalization has been enabled by the increase in digital data. The technology has been playing a great role in shaping industries and businesses.
Industry 4.0 is all about bringing quality, efficiency, and optimization to the processes by the usage of intelligent cyber-physical systems. Artificial intelligence, the internet of things, big data analysis, and cloud computing are some of the technologies, which are pushing forward the revolution.
One of the primary focus areas of the fourth industrial revolution is the quality control and management, which dictates the profitability of products. There is no doubt that in today’s time, people are more concerned about the quality, and they don’t mind paying more to get the product with world-class quality. Not only that, consumers expect seamless purchase and delivery experience, for which the product manufacturers have to cut short the lead times to reduce time to market for products.
What is Quality 4.0?
In easy to understand terms, Quality 4.0 is the digitalization of quality, compliance, and management systems. The term is not exclusive for only the technology, but it also means improvements in collaboration, culture, leadership, and competency with the help of technology. It doesn’t replace the traditional methods; rather, it betters them through technology.
Quality 4.0 has emerged as a term to emphasize quality in the era of industry 4.0. Quality 4.0 does not refer to technology; rather, Quality 4.0 means to improve the quality standards of production processes as well as products through Quality 4.0.
What are Quality 4.0 Technologies?
It is not surprising that innovation leaders have adopted Quality 4.0 to achieve differentiated performance. However, there are many quality teams that are unfamiliar with the technology and are not engaging in corporate strategies that are related to technology.
Various Quality 4.0 Technologies are:
1. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (AI/ML)
2. Cloud technologies
3. Mobile technology, Virtual reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR)
4. Big data and data lakes
5. Connected devices and edge devices
6. Social Media and Blockchain
Why Your Business Should Have A Quality 4.0 Strategy?
Quality 4.0 is a great way to realign quality to your business strategy. Many businesses have strategic objectives concerned with Big Data and fourth industrial revolution, which features quality improvement use cases. Quality 4.0 strategy allows organizations to overcome long-standing hurdles. The industry is facing persistent quality challenges related to a lack of data-driven quality decisions, poor quality culture. Much of the industry has been plagued by the same persistent quality challenges for decades associated with a poor quality culture, lack of data-driven quality decisions, and insufficient cross-functional visibility into quality. By adopting Quality 4.0, businesses overcome many hurdles with new veracity data-driven insights and a higher level of transparency.
What is the meaning of Quality 4.0 for Quality Professionals?
QA and fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0) impact quality professionals in 5 ways, namely data quality, speed of improvement, information sharing, cost of quality, and skills. All these things help to improve the process and assure better quality.
Let’s see some of the benefits of Quality 4.0:
When a business pays attention to quality, it yields more profit. Businesses whose focal point is quality never fail. Quality results in satisfied customers, which results in brand differentiation, which further leads to customer retention and higher profits. It also helps in reducing waste with quality processes in place. Companies, which depend on traditional methods of quality management processes and outdated processes, cause a financial drain.
Quality Management Processes
Quality management processes provide a centralized platform for managing activities related to quality, like analytics, collaboration, compliance, etc. As of now, only 21 percent of industries have made use of Quality Management Systems (QMS). Quality 4.0 is a great avenue for improving the processes, effectiveness, and efficiency of operations.
Industry 4.0 is all about increasing linkage between information technology and production processes. The internet of Things (IoT) connects components, machines, measurement systems, and products. Through Quality 4.0, companies can get quality assurance in real-time. When comprehensive data is available at every step, there is transparency in the processes. Quality assurance needs to be carried out in real-time so that there is no need for holding the processes.
The Physical in Digital and the Digital in Physical
Four broad aspects make the fourth industrial revolution, namely the Internet of Things, cyber-physical systems, cloud computing, and cognitive computing. The Internet of Things is responsible for real-time connectivity between machines and humans. This connectivity generates abundant data that fuels cognitive computers. Industry 4.0 makes a holistic approach to transforming the world by bridging the gap between physical and digital systems. Digital transformation is one of the most important aspects of Industry 4.0, as it is evolving various industries from hubs of mass production to quality powerhouses.
The Age of Autonomy
Artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, deep learning, smart devices, self-driving cars, smart cities, smart homes are some of the examples of state of the art technology and new innovations, which are being used in today’s world. Even with such vast development, Industry4.0 is still in its infancy.
Data-driven Quality Assurance
In the age of automation, data is the digital currency. Data is the foundation of modern intelligent machines. Data helps businesses to gather insights on the wants and needs of customers, while the practice of quality assurance empowers businesses to drive greater satisfaction and impart great experience. Fourth industrial revolution or Industry 4.0 has put the software at the heart of methods of productions, which marks a shift from hardware-based processes. The transition has resulted in a greater emphasis on the importance of software testing in delivering the product of great quality.
Quality Assurance leading the revolution
Industry revolution 4.0 is also termed as an automation revolution, is all about better quality, greater efficiency, and a lot of data. The impact of Industry 4.0 revolution is not limited to factories only- its impact outspreads to the cultural, social, and economic environment.
The software enabled processes lead the stage of industrialization; they need in-depth testing and quality assurance to get maximum results. In order to derive the maximum benefits of Industry 4.0, such as improved productivity, growing revenue, and reduced risks, to go for quality assurance solutions is the only way.