Given the unique nature of luxury goods and the level of craftsmanship required to create them, there’s a limit to what automation can do in this industry. Nonetheless, a solution that combines the advantages of human expertise and modern technology can be found in augmentation.

By taking a human-centric approach to digitization, luxury goods manufacturers can maintain the specialist knowledge that has been passed on over decades while improving production visibility.

This approach allows you to move away from outdated paper-based systems and monitor all aspects of your production from worker productivity to material issues — ultimately empowering you to optimize workflows and maximize efficiency across your factory.

Moving Beyond the Hesitation to Embrace Digital Tools

The hallmark of any successful luxury brand is quality craftsmanship. As such, agility can seem a bit intimidating — with many luxury goods manufacturers being hesitant to digitize processes because they don’t want to lose the human-centric foundation of their operations.

Luxury goods manufacturers are confronted with a variety of challenges — ranging from rapidly evolving consumer behaviors; to supply chain disruptions; to increasing raw material costs; to difficulties in finding, training, and retaining a qualified workforce. These conditions put increasing pressure on manufacturers to embrace change so that they can meet emerging challenges, drive a cycle of continuous improvement, and future-proof for the unpredictable obstacles that may arise in the coming months.

Fortunately, embracing digital does not have to mean transforming every single process — and technology does not necessarily have to be disruptive. By adopting augmentation, you can retain specialist knowledge while also making processes more efficient and eliminating manual administrative tasks.

Modernizing Processes While Retaining the Human Touch

As a luxury goods manufacturer, you're facing a unique challenge in preserving the handcrafted and specialized nature of your products while transitioning towards digitization. The key to success is to ensure your tech stack is designed with your workers in mind.

Start by considering the ways in which your operators are engaged with their work. Ask yourself: Where do they need to perform processes, and how can you optimize these processes by incorporating digital workflows? It’s vital to also take into account the type of guidance the new, younger generation of workers expect from technology.

A composable architecture with easy-to-build, no-code applications can be an essential tool in your organization’s human-centric approach to digitization — enabling workers closest to the processes in question to play an active role in solving any issues that may occur. Once you’ve identified the workflows that would be most valuable to digitize, you can build corresponding apps to improve production visibility, increase productivity, and more.

Here are some specific examples of areas in which you can leverage easy-to-build applications to streamline processes — empowering your team to focus their time and energy on the most important tasks:

Digital Work Instructions

Digital work instructions apps offer visual, paperless guidance to help operators perform both daily tasks and complex processes with fewer errors and more efficiency. As a luxury goods manufacturer, you can leverage digital work instructions apps to create guided workflows, capture data from end users, and connect devices for more streamlined traceability.

Ultimately, this enables you to simplify tasks and increase productivity through tracking cycle time by product, monitoring process completions, and identifying any potential quality issues that need to be resolved.

Work Order Tracking

Work Order Tracking puts more information in your teams’ hands — connecting data from equipment, systems, and humans right where tasks are being completed. Operators can schedule and track orders, materials, and jobs across your operation in real-time. This level of visibility and context is critical for addressing potential errors quickly and effectively.

Packing and Shipping

By digitizing packing and shipping workflows, you can provide workers with streamlined guidance on how to ship packages, track shipments, and validate addresses. And you can track your team’s productivity throughout each of these processes.

All of the use case examples above serve to augment operators in such a way that you can eliminate manual, administrative tasks while making critical workflows more efficient.

The important thing to remember here is that human-centric digitization is not a rip-and-replace approach: A composable app environment allows you to build off of the processes you have refined for so many years through creating systems that adapt to your organization’s unique needs.

And this type of increasingly digital environment makes it easier than ever to pass down knowledge to the next generation of workers — who are accustomed to using technology in every aspect of their lives.

Driving Continuous Improvement

In order to meet growing consumer demands, today’s luxury goods manufacturers are being challenged to increase their production capacity while still maintaining the high level of product quality expected of them.

Given these conditions, it’s never been more important to have real-time production visibility and data-driven insights that you can leverage to make informed decisions on how to solve the most critical pain points — from quality escapes to traceability issues.

By focusing your efforts on augmenting your workers versus automating your processes, you can build an optimized operational landscape that still keeps your people — and their expertise — at the center.

A New Approach to Digital Manufacturing Transformation

Read our ebook for insights on how connecting people, processes, and information can help you achieve digital transformation in a way that actually works for luxury goods organizations.