Thank you for the overwhelming response at the Seminar last week. We learnt a lot from speaking with you at the event, and are grateful for the warm welcome we received. Once again we would like to express our heartiest appreciation to the Ministry of Industrial Development, our supporting partners CENTEXS, Swinburne University, and IET, and each and every one of the participants.
As mentioned in the invitation, the purpose of the event is to gather all key parties in the development and growth of the East Malaysia industry, to share and learn together the trending technologies and the importance of adopting these technologies in order to remain competitive in the market.
We have gathered some key takeaways from the event if you missed it:
#1: The Changing Manufacturing Landscape and Opportunities Available
YB Datuk Hj Julaihi (Assistant Minister, Ministry of Industrial Development) shared that businesses were observed starting to shift their investment from China back to ASEAN, with Indonesia being the most attractive country for new business expansion, followed by Vietnam, Thailand, and Myanmar. With the changing manufacturing landscape in China, substantial growth in the sector is expected to be further stimulated through the
- Implementation of the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) integration plan; and
- Application of big data and mobile internet.
Under such context, some annual economic impact in ASEAN ranging from $25 billion to $45 billion could potentially be created by 2030 through innovative technologies. To ride on the trend and to cope with the increased level of competition, manufacturers are encouraged to:
- Stay aware of opportunities available;
- Close the skill gaps; and
- Adopt technologies available to their operations.
Key Takeaway: Manufacturers need to get ready for the changing manufacturing landscape with vast opportunities arise and level of competition increased.
#2: Premium career through technical training
Tuan Haji Syeed, CEO of CENTEXS highlighted the importance of improving and equipping the technical workforce with knowledge and know-how of advanced technology in order to support rapid industrialisation, and eventually strengthening the state’s GDP and raising the income of the citizens.
CENTEXS has identified key areas of trades and will initially focus on the trades of Oil and Gas, Construction, Manufacturing and Mechatronics. Various courses and certifications from these 4 industries are available for students to choose from.
Tuan Haji also highlighted the benefits of 3D printing technology that complements 3D CAD, and potential for commercial 3D printed products is unlimited. The future market will have the privilege to savour high precision and highly customised merchandise items as gifts and toys.
Key Takeaway: Technical competency and update is crucial to land a premium job and promising career.
#3: Student excellence through real world learning and application of technology
Dr. Wong (Dean of Faculty of Engineering, Computing and Science from Swinburne University of Technology Sarawak Campus) shared insights about CAD/CAE in education. Engineering students undergo a structured curriculum that exposes them to real engineering technology used by the industry in different stages of their study.
Students are required to fully exploit the capability of SOLIDWORKS in various areas, not restricted to just design, to solve engineering problems:
- Part and Assembly creation
- Robot arm simulation
- Motion Study and Analysis
- Thermal Analysis
Students are also exposed to various other CAD/CAM and prototyping technologies to create the working prototypes of their projects. Students participate in various international design competitions to gain real product design and manufacturing process, including the feasibility and manufacturability of their products.
Key Takeaway: It is crucial for engineer graduates to be equipped and exposed to multi-disciple and advanced technology prior to entering to job market to better prepare them to contribute in solving engineering problems.
#4: Innovation is the key of growth
Mr Lau (Director, IME Technology Sdn Bhd) shared a number of fascinating product innovations that opened up our horizon; it showed how innovation is valued and how much it can worth.
The top 3 challenges in Product Innovation are:
- Lack of collaboration across different departments (26%)
- Disparate systems and data sources (25%)
- ROI justifications for improvement investments (25%)
Existing technology is able to not only address the above issues, but equip businesses with tools to go even further. Engineers will be able to streamline processes, work on one single platform to design and analyse, enhance communication and collaborations among departments, and ultimately, make better decisions at earlier product development stage.
Key Takeaway: Innovation can come from anyone, solving everyday issues; technology advancement allows us to have more freedom in innovation.
#5: Embrace change, Ride the Revolution Wave
Ken (Senior Data Management Engineer, IME Technology Sdn Bhd) started the session by asking the audience how they measure their Engineering Productivity. Data collected from 1950 to 2010 showed that better engineering tools and processes have led to dramatically higher manufacturing output.
He continued by going through the evolution of Engineering:
Engineering 1.0 – 1760 to 1965 (The Industrial Age)
The era of pencil on paper/vellum, liquid ink on Mylar, blueprints.
This methodology which included significant amounts of trial and error was constant. However, during this period there were still incredible breakthroughs and inventions, such as telegraph, sewing machines, Wright Brothers’ plane and other fantastic engineering design but everything was still very manual in nature.
Engineering 2.0 – 1966 to 1995 (The Digital Age)
This is the era of Digital and where the term CAD was introduced. Computers were being used for complex calculations and system analysis or optimizations in several sectors.
Despite these advances, challenges still existed. Engineer had difficulty communicating their designs using simply 2D views. As a result, they spent hours creating Isometric views, hand renderings, and building physical prototypes to communicate and validate their designs often leading to costly and lengthy design cycles.
Engineering 3.0 – 1996 to 2015 (The Information Age)
The second generation of CAD offered a new paradigm of creating and inventing. The emphasis this time was on building designs (models) more like the world we see and live in (3D). Feature-based modeling methods and parametric linking of the parameters of features now allowed engineers to make changes and update drawings simultaneously.
The three capabilities that were pioneered, perfected and mass enabled:
- 3D CAD
- Simulation (Validation)
- Product Data Management (PDM)
Engineering 4.0 – The Automation Age
In next decades, we are expecting the largest rocket to be launched; drones will be command device for patrolling city, computer getting smarter, internet of things (IoT), and even industrial IoT.
The next key breakthrough in transforming the product development process has arrived and extends engineering data across the enterprise – Marketing, Sales, Purchasing, Quality and Manufacturing. Transitioning all downstream departments within an organization takes time, so while not 100% deployed, all companies have increased productivity and reduced rework by gradually through investing in tools which automatically provide design data.
Key Takeaway: Change is the only constant and the rate of change is increasing, the revolution is here and the cycle will only get faster. Early adopters will be able to remain as leaders of the industry.
#6: Infrastructure, Skilled People for Faster Growth
In the discussion forum, we discussed about the most alarming changes needed for the Industrial Growth in Sarawak, and the most common objection for the industry to adopt something new. Speakers and audiences unanimously agreed that better infrastructure and facilities is needed for the state, in order to generate better trading/ manufacturing environment for more activities to take place. When the appropriate infrastructure is ready, technically trained competent workers will complete the picture and gain momentum in growing the industry.
Key Takeaway: Infrastructure is important, but people are the key: invest time in fostering young generations, for they are the future of our land.
We will be back in Sarawak in October. Till then and Stay Tuned!