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Disrupting the Enterprise

Driving value through connected industrial workers


There are millions of industrial workers in the world today. These people are often highly skilled and highly mobile, performing the high-level, complex tasks that keep critical operations running in high-risk industrial environments like the energy sector, or in process industries like manufacturing and chemicals.

The growth of digital technology and the Internet of Things (IoT), together with the convergence of operational and information technology, heralds a new era for these workers. By enabling a connected industrial workforce that can use smart devices, and IoT-enabled assets, whole new levels of operational performance and safety can be achieved.



The Connected Industrial Worker uses field-tested mobile, sensor, asset-tracking, analytics and wearable technologies to help execute the daily work activities of an industrial or field worker more effectively, for example:

  1. The connected worker begins the day by securely logging on through a smart device and receiving a work order. Their control center knows precisely who has logged on, when and in which location.

  2. The worker’s devices interact with smart sensors in the work environment to verify they are in the right permitted location and have the right materials.

  3. The worker has easy access to smart operating procedures, and both generic and asset-specific instructions and checklists.

  4. At the point of repair, digital coaching capabilities can be provided through a smart device or wearable, enabling the worker to interact virtually with offsite expertise.

  5. Once they’ve completed their tasks, the worker simply updates the work order, captures a picture of the asset, and adds any comments required to close. With all of this managed seamlessly across "on-line" and "off-line" modes of operation, risk of lost work or data is reduced.

  6. In hazardous and large industrial work environments, the worker would also wear location and hazmat sensors that can monitor, for example, levels of environmental toxin exposure, as well as the worker’s location.

These examples show how the connected industrial worker offers huge potential for improving industrial and operational outcomes—from facilitating faster decision-making, safer work environments, less non-productive time and travel and fewer mechanical failures to less rework, better training experiences and improved security and identification of onsite workers.


Accenture is working with Airbus, one of the largest aerospace manufacturers in the world, to make use of the latest wearables technology on the A330 final assembly line. This initiative is helping Airbus operators improve the accuracy and speed of cabin seat marking processes. Innovative heads-up display technology enables the company’s aircraft seat locations to be marked down to the millimeter and checked for accuracy and quality. As a result, productivity has been improved by 500 percent for this particular process, and the error rate reduced to zero. Airbus honored Accenture with its 2016 Best in Class Award for Innovation for this program.


KPN, a major Dutch telecommunications company, asked Accenture to explore how wearable devices might support its field force activities. Together we piloted a solution that provides hands-free visual instructions, checklists, pick lists, work orders and other instructional information to the company’s employees as they perform field work. It helps KPN engineers better manage and execute their work orders, as well as enabling expert collaboration and data capture in the field. KPN has identified productivity improvements of 30 percent as a result. This program won the GSMA’s Global Mobile Award for "Best Mobile Service for Enterprise" category in 2016.


Major Resources Client
Accenture collaborated with a major resources client in the use of RFID location triangulation technology. To support improved turnaround execution, our solution provides the company with real-time visibility of the location of over 1,800 contractors and pieces of equipment during major industrial shutdowns. This kind of technology not only facilitates real-time decision-making, but also provides the basis for detailed trending and improvement analysis. The capabilities of the solution have supported improvements in safety, in productivity and in proper cost auditing for vendor work management.