One quarter of global manufacturers participating in a recent survey have already deployed artificial intelligence and cognitive computing technologies.
In addition, nearly four in 10 plan to allocate significant research and development funding toward advanced technologies, such as robotics and 3D printing, over the next two years.
Auditing firm KPMG polled 360 executives -- including 80 in the U.S. -- for its 2016 Global Manufacturing Outlook survey released this week.
The poll also found that than eight in 10 poll participants planned to alter their range of products over the next 12 to 24 months, and that of those respondents, more than half expect to launch one or more new products.
“Investing in innovative solutions and services is at the top of the agenda for manufacturers,” said Brian Heckler, KPMG's U.S. Industrial Manufacturing National Sector Leader. “Whether investing in incremental improvements for existing products or inventing entirely new products and services, it is clear manufacturers recognize the need to increase their investment in innovation.”
More than half of poll participants anticipated spending 4 percent to 10 percent of revenues on R&D during the next two years. Twenty-one percent expected to spend more than 10 percent, but that margin was just 15 percent among U.S. respondents.
Meanwhile, large percentages of respondents expressed concerns about competing business (38 percent), customer loyalty (44 percent) and product relevance (45 percent).