The leader of the pack: industrial manufacturing in an AI world

Over the last year with the onset of COVID-19, the pace of Artificial Intelligence (AI) implementation skyrocketed across industries but it was particularly notable for industrial manufacturing (IM), according to a new KPMG survey. At the same time, many (55 percent) business leaders feel it is moving too fast.

“Amid COVID-19, organizations have been able to successfully and nimbly adapt their previous AI landscapes to prepare for the newly digital world,” said Managing Director, Data & Analytics Roy Mathews. “Industry 4.0 strategies clearly align with AI initiatives and that is likely the reason why this industry’s adoption of AI has been quicker than others.” 

As AI adoption rapidly increases, industrial manufacturing is a leader among the seven industries surveyed. Specifically, while the level of AI functionality varies across industries, industrial manufacturing was the highest among all industries, with 93 percent of business leaders saying that it is at least moderately functional at their organization. Other findings include:

  • 49 percent of industrial manufacturing business leaders say AI is fully functional at scale within their organization.
  • 61 percent of industrial manufacturing business leaders say that an increase in productivity is the greatest potential benefit of AI adoption and most (95 percent) agree that AI technology would make their company run more efficiently.
  • According to industrial manufacturing business leaders, in the next two years, AI technology will have varying impacts and will experience growth dependent on industry needs:
  • 21 percent for product design, development and engineering
  • 21 percent for maintenance operations
  • 15 percent for production/assembly

“Regardless of any global disruption, it’s important to leverage technology like AI to improve maintenance operations, product design and engineering, and supply chain to hardwire efficiencies in the operations.” said Mathews. “Enterprise resilience is at the forefront of the industrial manufacturing industry as we lead into a digitally evolved world.”

To learn more about the survey and schedule media interviews,  please contact Melanie Batley.


About Thriving in an AI World

The KPMG study, Thriving in an AI World, is an evolution of a study KPMG originally released in early 2020. The findings are based on feedback from a range of 950 full-time business decision makers and/or IT decision makers* with at least a moderate amount of AI knowledge and at companies with over $1 billion in revenue**, across seven industries (150 respondents+ per industry): technology, financial services, industrial manufacturing, healthcare, life sciences, retail, and government. The online survey was fielded between January 3rd, 2021 and January 16th, 2021. The margin of error (MOE) for the total sample at the 95 percent confidence level is +/- 3.2 percentage points.

*Only government respondents included IT decision makers.

**Healthcare and life sciences respondents were from companies with over $100 million in revenue. +Healthcare and life sciences respondents only had 100 respondents per industry.




Stephanie Trefcer

Stephanie Trefcer

Senior Associate, Communications, KPMG US

+1 201-505-6844

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