Industrial Automation Magazine India



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How industry should cope with the disruption ?

During these trying times when the industry is heavily affected with economical issues came up the pandemic called Covid 19 and disrupted the industry completely. We at Industrial Automation Magazine have taken an initiative to bring the industry together and share their viewpoints so that others reading can take measures accordingly to have minimal damage.

About the industry expert

Disclaimer: The views expressed in interviews are personal, not necessarily of the organisations represented.

Lokendra Panwar is the Founder and CEO of Propero a company dealing with technology consulting. Lokendra is a Digital Transformation evangelist and has seen the entire digital product evaluation over the last twenty years. He has been on the enabling side of technologies as a contributor and has also been on the service provider side actually using various virtual product development and industrial automation technologies. Lokendra is a post-graduate in manufacturing systems engineering from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technologies Kharagpur. He likes to read and travel when he is not thinking about technologies

Has the present Corona Virus strain caught the world unaware and unprepared ?

This situation is unprecedented and even when China was doing lock-down in Wuhan, no one in other parts of the world viewed this as something to worry about. I think the speed at which this pandemic attacked the world was unexpected. Many countries were in denial mode till it hit them hard. I am not sure if many businesses actually were prepared to respond, while many did rose to the occasion to make some difference.

What are the implications for business in the near, medium and long term ?

I think the way we do business will change in many ways and it would have similar effects as 9/11 did to the world with increased airport security. I believe the mask will be here to stay, the supply chain will be thought through to avoid the risk of depending on a single large source. The businesses will transact with caution with personal hygiene becoming more important, more work from home, increased digital transformation and accelerated adoption of collaborative technologies

How can governments be better prepared to handle such pandemics in future ?

I think the world governments will be more sensitive to such pandemics and will prepare both for early warning systems and containment strategy.
Technology adoption, understanding of smooth execution of essential services, being sensitive to the most affected people and groups. The on-demand ramp-up of the healthcare system and how to collaborate between private and public organization to fight such pandemic more effectively

High accuracy thermal scanners are available but are not used possible due to high costs. Would they be more effective ?

I believe the necessity will drive the cost down any non-invasive system will be the need for future

Now that businesses are getting used to the Work From Home culture, will this signal a paradigm shift ?

While this will certainly be an item to discuss within an organization and there will be arguments from both sides. As long as it is productive and does not affect the required connect within a team, it will be here to stay beyond IT companies too.

Some analysts have suggested this crisis will boost automation and make a case for Lights Out manufacturing. Your comments ?

As I said before, the digital transformation and technology adoption will increase and automation in manufacturing will continue to increase given that it provides business continuity with minimum human intervention. With the advance in AR/VR technologies, automation of manufacturing will be controlled remotely

What are the lessons from this crisis ?

Expect the unexpected, I believe once every decade such events do happen which changes the way business is run. Looking at the positive side, the earth did get time to heal itself, and possibly the world can take a break once in a while to reboot itself. No one ever thought that entire economies can be put on hold. In a more concrete way, business continuity and disaster recovery policies will be relooked to include a pandemic situation.

#April 2020 Covid Special

To say the world is passing through trying times is to state the obvious. Also evident is the fact that for too long the world has been ignoring the warning signs of environmental degradation fuelled by human excesses and greed. But this is no time for ifs and buts, nor recrimination. Instead, the crisis should be used as an opportunity to make the required course correction to make the world a safer place for all living beings, and the ecological balance, restored. Industrial Automation invited a cross section of industry leaders to offer their views and possible course of action as a way forward from this situation, even as governments across the world and the people are trying to make sense from the still evolving scenario. To read the full cover story Please click here