Rising product and service complexity
From the perspectives of both design and production, aerospace and defense products and services are becoming increasingly sophisticated, creating complex challenges as companies struggle to keep up with production increases and rising costs. Over the next 12 to 18 months, almost 60 percent of commercial aerospace executives expect costs to rise across production labor, raw materials and sub-system or parts costs.1
The convergence of emerging operational and information technologies offers new opportunities to overcome production challenges. However, companies are struggling to translate their ambitious digital transformation strategies from proofs of concept (POCs) into production.
One key barrier? The difficulty in combining the power of machines and humans to work together in new ways. Ninety percent of aerospace and defense executives cite this as their top talent challenge for building and scaling digital pilots.2
The workforce as change agents
Yet the aerospace production workforce is also often cited as a major untapped enabler for change.
And this challenge is exacerbated by the accelerating speed at which members of the workforce now move between roles and organizations. Sixty-nine percent of executives say that this has increased the need for reskilling.4
Imperatives for transformation
So, what can aerospace and defense executives do to turn the workforce into an asset enabling manufacturing and production transformation? There are four imperatives:
- Operating model and organization
Establish the blueprint for an organizational structure that supports continuous innovation enabled through digital. Sixty-seven percent of aerospace and defense executives cite this as the top strategic challenge that impedes the pace of organizational transformation to scale digital-POCs across key business areas.5
Nurture agile leaders by equipping middle managers with the skills required to enable digital transformation. Sixty-eight percent of executives cite the lack of these as a critical challenge to building and scaling digital POCs.6
Inspire new behaviors to overcome the workforce reluctance and/or skepticism that 65 percent of aerospace and defense executives believe is a top challenge to building and scaling digital POCs.7
Retool the workforce to create broader digital fluency among the workforce. Seventy-three percent of aerospace and defense executives see the lack of broad digital skills as hampering the ability to innovate. 8
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1 Accenture Commercial Aerospace Insight Report 2019
2 Rethink, Reinvent, Realize. How to successfully scale digital innovation to drive growth 2019, aerospace and defense respondents.
3 Decoding Organizational DNA - Trust, Data, and unlocking value in the workplace 2019, aerospace and defense respondents.
4 Harness the Engine of Innovation – Technology Vision 2019 , aerospace and defense respondents.
5 Rethink, Reinvent, Realize. How to successfully scale digital innovation to drive growth 2019, aerospace and defense respondents.