Trending Technologies in Engineering Sector
The significant changes witnessed in Engineering sector and their effect on vendors and customers
In the last couple of years, engineering sector has evolved a lot. I see customers are becoming more comfortable to seek outside help for engineering through outsourcing and through new specialist technology solutions beyond the conventional engineering tools.
Macro-economic imperatives like difficult economies and need for capitalizing on the potential in emerging markets, have helped drive outsourcing of engineering services in recent times. Companies are looking for solutions–technology or process, for cost reduction and to retain knowledge as talent becomes constrained. Other factors such as product localization, shortening product lifecycle, growing pressures on R&D budgets are also driving changes in engineering.
From an engineering discipline perspective, embedded and electronics content has increased significantly specifically in automotive sector demanding tighter integration and common engineering roadmaps in mechanical, software and electronics domains.
To address these needs, solution providers like us will have to invest in improving domain knowledge as customers are expecting higher value. Customers are demanding global delivery capabilities from their engineering partners with complete ownership of the solution or service. The third aspect is to solve difficult problems through new technology solutions.
Anticipated Changes are Yet to Happen
Adoption of cloud in the core engineering sector has not picked up. Another area where I would have accepted for more action is systems engineering. Major engineering organizations as well as service providers are still laying out the right approach to adopt systems engineering as an engineering discipline.
Broader trends to keep an eye on in 2014
To serve the emerging market needs, I am anticipating continued activities around mergers and acquisitions or partnerships between leading auto OEMs. We are closely observing some of the technology trends like 3D printing for actual production and Model Based Enterprise as a better way for collaboration. The 3D Printing arena is seeing a lot of action on all fronts and there is a perceived delay of getting this into mainstream manufacturing. Model Based Enterprise enables 3D data consumption for downstream non engineering users like quality, manufacturing, purchase. It also aggregates product data from multiple enterprise systems and ensures the data shared downstream is up to date.
The expected changes in customer spends for 2014
Customer spend will increase in areas such as manufacturing and industrial engineering as customers will continue to modernize and their production facilities and improve the efficiency across board. Factory digitization will attract significant investments from global manufacturers. Growing pressure on becoming cost competitive and improving time to market will drive some investments in product localization. The sector will invest in new tools that reinforce their engineering expertise and make them competitive in the market.