Digital transformation has been one of the key topics among companies operating in the manufacturing sector for quite some time now. The acceleration of digitisation processes paved the way for further discussions about Industry 4.0 as well as the upcoming fifth and sixth industrial revolutions. Lithuanian Innovation Centre (LIC) – one of the ADMA TranS4MErs’ partners – has been working with digitalisation processes, providing business support services, for more than 25 years. Having observed how digitalization is changing the way products are designed, manufactured, used, and maintained, the team of LIC experts prepared the Manufacturing Digitalisation Index 2022.
The motivation for the development of the Index
The Index is a complex overview of how countries around Europe – and in particular Lithuania – are performing under the pressure to go further in the digitisation path. Digitalisation is changing the way products are designed, manufactured, used, and maintained. Also, this process provides an opportunity to improve supply chains, allowing companies to reduce their negative impact on the environment. This in turn is ultimately linked to increased business competitiveness, productivity, innovation, and rising wages.
Lithuania was one of the first EU countries to develop its own Industry Digitalization Roadmap 2020-2030, which outlined the country’s industrial development trends and objectives. The need to monitor the country’s digital transformation was and still remains high. However, there were no coherent initiatives to monitor the digitalisation of the industry. Responding to this need, the Manufacturing Digitalisation Index 2022 was initiated.
The main findings for enterprises and policymakers around Europe
How can the information collected in the Index be used? First and foremost, assembled intelligence can be adapted by policymakers, business associations, consultants, and event manufacturing companies to monitor processes and trends in industrial digitalization and make decisions on the deployment of digitalization technologies in industrial enterprises.
The table below shows the overall scores of the Manufacturing Digitalisation Index, as well as the scores of the different categories that make up the Index, i.e. Enabling Environment (which includes skills, investments, innovation application, infrastructure, and collaboration) and Use of Technology (which includes the use of 10 technology categories), as collected by the manufacturing sector in each country.
As seen in the table, countries fall into several digitalisation categories. When evaluating the EU context, four such categories can be observed: low performers (MDI score between 0 and 25) are countries which fall quite behind the leaders; average performers (MDI score between 26 and 50) is the category into which fall the greatest number of the EU members; high performers (MDI score between 51 and 75) are the countries with truly remarkable achievements in digitalisation, true European leaders; exceptional performers (MDI score between 76 and 100) is an empty category since it should house countries which in terms of digital transformation are far ahead of all other EU countries.
The Index leaders are the Scandinavian countries Finland (1st place), Denmark (2nd place), and Sweden (4th place), together with the Netherlands (3rd place) and Austria (5th place). However, the top two countries are more than 10 points ahead of the rest. In addition, Denmark and Finland are also ranked in the top two in the Enabling Environment and Technology application areas, making them the most advanced countries in terms of industrial digitalisation in Europe.
The Index shows that most European countries and enterprises still have a long way to go in order to complete digital transformation and make use of all the benefits it provides. However, manufacturing SMEs are not left alone to deal with the challenges digital transformation can bring. The ADMA TranS4MErs project brought together a consortium of 35 partners in all countries around the EU.
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If you would like to learn more about the Manufacturing Digitalisation Index, please contact Povilas Bacevičius.