SINGAPORE - A*Star's Singapore Institute of Manufacturing Technology (SIMTech) will be teaming up with 10 manufacturing firms to enhance the digital transformation of the industry as well as be economically resilient.
A letter of intent was signed on Thursday (April 14) between SIMTech and the companies.
The scope of the three-year collaboration includes masterclasses and training courses to develop business solutions incorporating SIMTech digital innovations and bridge technology and capability gaps through research collaborations to strengthen the resilience of local companies and their supply chains.
Makino and SMT Technology are among the 10 firms involved in the partnership.
Precision engineering firm Makino Asia's chief executive and president Neo Eng Chong told The Straits Times that firms need to look at digital transformation holistically. They cannot just focus on one aspect and be contented, especially if it involves an entire value chain.
"If one party decides to say no and prefers the manual way, it's harder for the entire ecosystem to transform digitally.
"The holistic view is very important, and that's why the partnership becomes so significant and critical for this to succeed and bring more people on board. This platform will encourage everybody to come together to see a bigger picture."
Besides viewing digital transformation holistically, the partnership would also allow the firms to discuss how to keep up with industry demands.
Mr Gerry Ong, managing director of SMT Technology, noted that some companies have to adapt as the industry demands changes.
"To do these things, you have to take care of three things - cost, delivery and quality. In manufacturing, if production keeps on switching processes, that will be very costly, but how do we do it more effectively?"
Speaking at the Manufacturing Productivity Technology Centre conference held at Fusionopolis Innovis on Thursday, Minister of State for Trade and Industry Alvin Tan said that with the development of Industry 4.0, many new jobs would emerge in the manufacturing sector.
Mr Tan added that Singapore is developing talent to ensure that workers have the right skills and expertise to benefit from upcoming opportunities and support the sector's growth.
"We are partnering with institutes of higher learning, trade associations and public sector agencies, we are raising the knowledge base in our local workforce and helping our workers upskill and reskill."
For example, SIMTech, with the guidance of the Advanced Manufacturing Training Academy, will launch eight new Continuing Education and Training courses to enable Singaporeans to contribute to the new opportunities in the manufacturing industry.
The programmes will cover topics such as industrial sustainability, operations modelling and simulation, and will be gradually rolled out between the second quarter and fourth quarter of this year.