We have machines capable of doing some incredible things these days. Not even Nikola Tesla could have seen technology advancing to its current state, and the amazing thing is that new developments and products are hitting the market every day. The name of this new wave of technology is quite fitting—Industry 4.0.
The most important thing to know about industry 4.0 is that it’s not only the future—it’s the now, and it’s impacting everything from customer satisfaction to manufacturing efficiency. As incredible as some of the new gadgets Industry 4.0 has brought us are, the software programs that are the brains of these machines are where the real magic lies. Continue reading to learn what software solutions are powering Industry 4.0.
What in the world is Industry 4.0?
If you’re not a manufacturer or techy, you might have no clue what Industry 4.0 is. Bear with us as we put it into historical context.
The First Industrial Revolution, which started in Great Britain and the U.S. during the 18th Century, brought us into the modern age. It introduced the harnessing of steam to power machines and the switch from hand-crafted goods to mechanized processes that enabled large-scale production.
To demonstrate how far-reaching the implications of revolutionizing technology are on society, The Second Industrial Revolution forever changed the relationship between people and labor as well as between bosses and laborers. But how, you ask? That question can be answered with two words—factory electrification.
The Second Industrial Revolution brought the beginning of the end of slavery in North America, South America, and parts of Europe. What was so significant about the Second Industrial Revolution is that when factories became electrified and large-scale production became mass production because machines could do the heavy lifting.
That meant that compulsory labor was no longer necessary because anyone could do the work. As you can see, when technology meets industry, it has the power to not only revolutionize industry but society also.
The Third Industrial Revolution was the rise of computers, the internet, and the beginnings of artificial intelligence (AI). From the very beginning, AI was based on creating machines that could think like humans. We may not be all the way there yet, but Industry 4.0 has brought us much closer.
So what is Industry 4.0? It’s the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and it has the potential to impact society as seismically as the second one did. The second one solved human rights, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution helped us keep commerce alive through COVID-19.
What’s different about the Fourth Industrial Revolution?
As is always the case, many of the Fourth Industrial Revolution developments are much improved versions of advancements made during the latter part of the previous one. The Third Industrial Revolution was the birth of the internet and the imagining of artificial intelligence and automation.
If AI and automation were imagined or born during the third wave of world-changing tech, they were actualized and nearly perfected in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. With that being said, many of the advancements that will become the flagships of the Fourth Industrial Revolution have not even been created yet. However, we’re going to check out some real-world applications of Industry 4.0.
Industry 4.0 has revolutionized customer service.
Any good business owner knows excellent customer service is the most important component of a successful company. Small business owners across the United States have found that virtual contact centers and remote call center software are great ways to provide a higher level of customer experience. By utilizing advanced features like live chat and the ability to switch between communication channels, from live chat to the phone system, they can meet customers where they’re most comfortable.
Customer relationship management (CRM) software gives remote agents the ability to quickly and accurately provide customer support by equipping them with valuable customer insights. Imagine your team members working remotely and operating as synergetically as if they were sitting side by side in your on-premises call center. With remote call centers and contact center software, you can build cohesive teams even if your team members never meet in person.
With COVID-19 forcing people inside their homes, remote call center software has allowed companies to keep providing customer support while their facilities are closed. Remote contact centers are just the beginning.
We’re only in the infant stages of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. The next generation of industry professionals may be able to run entire corporations from their homes or Starbucks. Just like the Second Industrial Revolution impacted human rights, the Fourth Industrial Revolution will enable us to create our own new normal rather than leaving it to COVID-19.