The growth of agility

The Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) in the UK plays a leading role in Factory of the Future developments. Lina Huertas is the MTC’s Head of Technology Strategy for Digital Manufacturing. What does she think?

The MTC’s research is aimed at helping companies access digital factory technology, involving Government and European Commission funds alongside MTC’s own core research funds.

"We’re seeing a greater requirement these days for agility. We’re also seeing the emergence of new business models: if manufacturers extract intelligence from data to maximize operational efficiency, they can work in different ways not just for themselves, but also with and for their customers."

"It’s often smaller manufacturers who stand most to benefit. They can move faster, and also see fairly immediate results from continuous process improvement."

"I have two main messages about the Factory of the Future. The first is that the meaning of manufacturing will change. Right now, it’s about the single ownership of the making of a product. In future, it will be a mix of who owns the knowledge, who owns the software platform, who owns the manufacturing facility and so on.

The second is the transformation to the world of work. Yes, it can be seen as a challenge – but if we do the right things, it could be a great opportunity. It could make a genuinely positive impact on society."