Gartner’s Hype Cycle 2020: From corporate production systems to digital operating systems

Competitive Capabilities International (CCi), the producer of TRACC, a digital integrative improvement solution, has been listed as a sample vendor of corporate production systems in Gartner’s Hype Cycle for Manufacturing Operations Strategy for the sixth consecutive year. As only one of five production system vendors listed, CCi retains its esteemed position as a vendor of what Gartner now terms ‘mature mainstream’ enabling technology.

Underpinning the report is the premise that to achieve breakthrough performance, organisations should treat manufacturing operations as a brand asset and develop a codified system of best practices that evolves based upon performance-based maturity. These gains should then be connected to a broader operating system.


The evolution of corporate production systems

For decades, some of the world’s leading global organisations have used their production systems – immersed in lean, continuous improvement and performance standards – as the primary source of sustainable advantage. The main aim of a production system is to deliver cost savings and efficiency gains or expose new improvement opportunities at a site or function level.

Organisations that have made continuous improvement the bedrock of their operations will be well poised to capitalise on the benefits of the next generation of corporate production systems which Gartner has termed ‘digital operating systems’.

Having just entered the Hype Cycle, digital operating systems represent an emerging approach to production systems that harmonise lean and continuous improvement principles with smart manufacturing. 


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Gartner identifies the following seven components of a modern production system:

  • Goals and Objectives
  • Organisation and Talent
  • Manufacturing Network
  • Metrics
  • Operational Visibility
  • Process Focus
  • Technology

Modern enterprises are required to make decisions in near real-time based on accurate data. To do this, leaders need accurate and relevant insights into live operations. The new digital approach, therefore, curtails the inherent limitations of established lean-based systems, such as the Toyota Production System (TPS), world class manufacturing (WCM), and total quality management (TQM) which are struggling to drive the requisite levels of speed and agility.


Adapting to the new world of work

Organisations are finding themselves at a critical juncture where lean and digital intersect ‒ manufacturing operations must now leverage new technologies to respond with greater flexibility to shifting demand.

The pace of this change has been significantly impacted by the advent of COVID-19 and the full set of challenges that the pandemic has created.

Forward thinking companies are already taking steps to digitise production as well as their entire supply chain. Technologies such as big data analytics solutions, autonomous systems, digital twinning, and end-to-end real-time planning, among many others, form the basis of next-generation production systems.

These technologies will increasingly ensure that transactional work is taken care of and the leadership challenge will be to provide strategic direction to the improvement side of the business.


Unlocking superior performance across the value chain

While digital operating systems won’t change the fundamental purpose of corporate production systems, they will transform the way they are built and run. They will create an integrated application of technologies and digital dexterity with lean and continuous improvement principles that serves to drive superior performance across the end-to-end value chain. 

TRACC is a digital integrative improvement solution that helps leading organisations achieve sustainable results across the value chain through best practice and work process improvement. By synchronising globally benchmarked best practices across the full value chain, including people, process and technology, TRACC enables organisations to efficiently build and optimise their digital operating systems to achieve a competitive advantage in the new world of work.