Industrial Revolution 4.0 – Part Two: Evolving Your Industrial Relations StrategiesDecember 5, 2017
The Industrial Revolution 4.0 will give rise to unprecedented manufacturing methodologies and processes characterised by technological advances, increased data connectivity, increased data acquisition and new pathways for creative thought. Due to changing workforce demographics arising from changes in manufacturing processes, businesses will need to consider how their employment and industrial relations strategies will adapt. At the cusp of the Industrial Revolution 4.0, business owners need to avoid tying down the industrial potential of their business with inflexible structures that can damage market share. In other words, don’t start pouring the concrete foundations for a deluxe analogue mobile phone factory at a time when the smartphone is about to transform the market.
Part One of this series discussed the labour market implications of the Industrial Revolution 4.0 in the manufacturing industry. These changes outlined in the first article help pinpoint the workforce changes a business needs to successfully shift their industrial relations strategies from Industrial Revolution 3.0 production into Industrial Revolution 4.0. The journey from 3.0 to 4.0 requires careful industrial relations planning. Your industrial relations strategy needs flexibility to avoid it clashing into rapidly changing business strategies that may want to seize the initiative and opportunities afforded by developing technologies and markets.
In this second article of our three part series, we will explore some of these key strategic industrial relations challenges for manufacturers in this evolution.