Hear six compelling use cases where generative AI is making a significant impact in augmenting frontline workers and transforming operations. Learn how GenAI Assistants and smart, connected worker technologies can identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies in production processes.

frontline operations copilot


Thursday, February 29, 2024
12:00 PM ET
Duration: 1 hour

Hear six compelling use cases where generative AI is making a significant impact in augmenting frontline workers and transforming operations. Learn how GenAI Assistants and smart, connected worker technologies can identify bottlenecks and inefficiencies in production processes.

AI is playing a key role in changing the manufacturing landscape, augmenting workers and empowering them with improved, optimized processes, better data, and personalized instruction.

Deloitte recently published an article with the Wall Street Journal covering how AI is revolutionizing how humans work and its transformative impact. They emphasized that AI is not merely a resource or tool, but, that it serves almost as a co-worker, enhancing work processes and efficiency. This article discussed how the evolving form of intelligence augments human thinking and emphasized this as a catalyst for accelerated innovation.

Manufacturing is uniquely situated to benefit from AI to improve operations and empower their frontline workforces. The skilled labor gap has reached critical levels, and the market is under tremendous stress to keep up with growing consumer demand while staying compliant with quality and safety standards. Manufacturing workers are crucial to the success of operations – maintenance, quality control and assurance, and more – manufacturers rely upon their workforce to ensure production proceeds smoothly and successfully.

AI is playing a key role in changing the manufacturing landscape, augmenting workers and empowering them with improved, optimized processes, better data for informed decision-making, troubleshooting, personalized instructions and training, and improved quality assurance and control. According to the World Economic Forum, an estimated 87% of manufacturing companies have accelerated their digitalization over the past year, the IDC states 40% of digital transformations will be supported by AI, and a recent study from LNS Research found that 52% of industrial transformation (IX) leaders are deploying connected worker applications to help their frontline workforces. Not only that, AI technology is expected to create nearly 12 million more jobs in the manufacturing industry.

Integrating AI into manufacturing not only enhances productivity, but also opens the door to new possibilities for worker safety, training, and innovative new manufacturing practices. Here are some ways AI is transforming manufacturing operations:

  • AI-based Workforce Analytics: Collecting, analyzing, and using frontline worker data to assess individual and team performance, optimize upskilling and reskilling opportunities, increase engagement, reduce burnout, and boost productivity.
  • Personalized Training in the Flow of Work: With AI and connected worker solutions, manufacturers can identify and supply training at the time of need that is personalized to each individual and the task at hand.
  • Personalized Work Instructions: AI enables manufacturers to offer customized digital work instructions mapped to their skill levels and intelligently assign work based on each individual’s capabilities.
  • Digital Performance Support and Troubleshooting Guide: Generative AI assistants and bot-based AI virtual assistants offer support and guidance to manufacturing operators, enabling access to collaborative technologies and knowledge bases to ensure the correct actions and processes are taken.
  • Optimize Maintenance Programs: AI algorithms analyze data from sensors on machinery and other connected solutions to predict when equipment is likely to fail. This enables proactive maintenance, minimizing downtime and reducing maintenance costs. Additionally, with AI technologies, manufacturers can implement autonomous maintenance processes through a combination of digital work instructions and real-time collaboration tools. This allows operators to independently complete maintenance tasks at peak performance.
  • Improve Quality Control: AI-powered solutions can improve inspection accuracy and optimize quality control and assurance processes to identify defects faster. With connected worker solutions, manufacturers can effectively turn their frontline workforce into human sensors supplying quality data and enhancing assurance processes.
  • Ensure Worker Safety: AI-driven safety systems coupled with connected worker technologies monitor the work environment, supplying real-time data and identifying potential hazards to ensure a safer workplace for employees.

connected enterprise

As AI continues to advance, the manufacturing industry is poised for even greater transformation, improving both the quality of products and the working conditions for employees. AI is revolutionizing the way humans work and how the manufacturing industry approaches nearly every process across operations, augmenting work interactions, productivity, efficiency, and boosting innovation.

Learn about the best practices for optimal asset maintenance performance and how to track your assets to ensure that everything is in working condition.

Unlocking the potential of connected worker platforms becomes a game-changer when integrated with enterprise systems, giving them a live, closed loop connection to frontline processes and operations. This creates a truly connected enterprise that links diverse systems with the frontline workforce, paving the way for heightened efficiency, productivity, and safety.

connected worker platform integrations

However, a majority of connected worker platforms overlook the fact that connectivity doesn’t end with simply linking workers to their platform. They fail to recognize the immense benefits that live connections to enterprise systems of record bring to frontline business processes and activities.

Manufacturing success hinges on the seamless integration of connected worker platforms with legacy and enterprise systems to provide adequate support to frontline workers, giving them access to data and knowledge that can boost their efficiency and keep them safe.

Read below for more information on connected worker platform integrations; what they entail, which enterprise systems are essential for integration, and how AI-powered technology improves impact on frontline manufacturing activities.

Connected Worker Integrations: More than just an API

In manufacturing, it is critical that connected worker platforms are integrated with various enterprise systems to streamline operations and ensure that workers have the data and information they need at their fingertips. As critical as this is, most connected worker vendors believe that providing an open API is sufficient, and even boast that they integrate to enterprise systems, when in fact they place this burden on their customers.

Having an API is not enough

There are several not-so-obvious aspects to connected worker platform integrations, including:

  • Connected worker integrations with enterprise applications, even streamlined ones, have essential requirements such as logic that needs to be written, customized, run, and supported. Most, if not all, of this logic is initiated by the connected worker platform, propagating events and data from shop floor processes to the associated enterprise system of record.
  • Connected worker platforms with just an “API” require all of this functionality to be developed, hosted, and supported externally. The responsibility is then on the customer to build a custom product and select and support the hosting environment. This effort (building, hosting, and support) can cost between $50K and $150K to build and test, and then another $50K – $150K annually for 5 x 9 support. And, the customer is responsible for maintaining an SLA acceptable to the business (99.9% being typical).
Pro Tip

It’s critical that connected worker platforms include “platform-as-a-service” (Paas) capabilities that provide the ability to write, support, and execute both standard and custom integrations. These can be done by the platform provider, the customer, as well as third-party system vendors and system integrators. Providing PaaS capabilities puts the responsibility on the vendor for operating the integration service, and maintaining SLAs, geo-redundancy, disaster recovery, and privacy and security. In short, just saying “we have an API” places an undue burden on customers, and prevents building the sustainable connected enterprise necessary to remain competitive in today’s global economy.


Which Enterprise Systems Should You Integrate

In any industrial environment, connected worker platforms should be integrated with various systems to support operations, help with cooperation and communication, and gain valuable insights into frontline manufacturing processes. These integrations streamline activities, improve efficiency, and provide a unified digital environment that empowers frontline workers.

This concept of a connected enterprise spans several initiatives within an organization: assets and equipment, the products being manufactured, the end customer, operations, workers, and the entire supply chain, and is highlighted below using the Industrial Transformation (IX) Reference Architecture from LNS Research.

connected worker enterprise system integration

Examples of enterprise management systems of record that are key to connected worker success and should be integrated are:

  • ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning)
  • EAM (Enterprise Asset Management)
  • HCM (Human Capital Management)
  • HR, Training, and LMS (Learning Management System)
  • QMS (Quality Management Systems)
  • MES (Manufacturing Execution System)
  • CMMS (Computerized Maintenance Management System)
  • Supply Chain Management

Enterprise systems such as ETQ, Workday, UKG, SAP, Oracle, IBM Maximo, Microsoft Dynamics 365, Salesforce, and ADP provide transformational value for a manufacturing company if they can be connected into frontline operations. By integrating connected worker platforms with these systems, manufacturers can create an interconnected environment that supports frontline workers and drives operational excellence. Ultimately, integration enhances collaboration, workforce visibility, decision-making processes, and overall operational efficiency, making connected worker platforms an indispensable component for manufacturing organizations.

Improving Integration Success Through Augmentir

At Augmentir, we see integrations differently than other connected worker platforms. Our rich history of building integrations in the manufacturing space enabled us to design a connected worker solution that easily, bi-directionally, and securely integrates the enterprise systems of record to create closed loop processes involving the frontline workforce.

Augmentir has internal PaaS services to run connectors that we build and support for popular enterprise applications like SAP, Salesforce, ETQ, Oracle, IBM Maximo, and more. Additionally, our PaaS enables custom integrations to be built and executed for custom, and niche applications. All third-party integrations running in the Augmentir connected worker platform carry the same SLA and geo-redundant support. By facilitating connected worker platform integrations with enterprise systems in this way, we have provided leading manufacturers with increased workforce visibility, improved productivity, digitized and standardized processes, enhanced training and collaboration, and more.

augmentir enterprise integration

Furthermore, because we are the leading AI-powered connected worker provider, we have brought innovative generative AI technologies such as AI-driven analytics, machine learning algorithms, NLP, predictive maintenance, and industrial AI copilots to improve connected worker integrations with enterprise systems, providing real-time guidance, enabling predictive analysis, and enhancing communication and collaboration among workers.

Schedule a demo to learn more about our AI-powered connected worker solutions and how they are drastically improving frontline processes, training, and manufacturing activities.


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Recently, the Augmentir team was excited to support WebexOne as a gold sponsor. It was great to participate in such an inspiring event, where collaboration and hybrid work were key themes throughout the sessions.

Recently, the Augmentir team was excited to support WebexOne as a gold sponsor. It was great to participate in such an inspiring event, where collaboration and hybrid work were key themes throughout the sessions.

During the event, our team had an opportunity to speak with industry leaders to discuss their top challenges and how Augmentir and Cisco together are helping shape the future of work in the manufacturing industry.

Shaping the Future of Work

Augmentir’s partnership with Cisco was built to address some of the top challenges in the industrial sector today. During the WebexOne event, Augmentir showcased how the Webex remote collaboration tool, Expert on Demand, and our AI-Powered Connected Worker Platform together deliver a unique combination of technology and tools necessary to help increase safety, quality, and productivity for frontline workers performing industrial jobs in manufacturing and service.

These themes were prevalent throughout the WebexOne event – using technology to unlock human potential and elevate today’s workforce.

Elevating Workforce Performance

Many of the themes discussed during the event focused on today’s changing workforce, and the unique needs of the “deskless” workers, who have been underserved by technology.  This is especially true in manufacturing, where businesses face a growing skilled labor shortage, retention, and worker engagement challenges, all while lacking the appropriate digital tools and data to effectively train and continually support their workers.

Augmentir’s suite of AI-powered connected worker tools help industrial companies understand their diverse workforce at an individual level, enabling them to reduce the effort it takes to onboard, guide, and support their workforce.

  • Improve job quality – Drive quality improvements by moving from paper-based to interactive digital work instructions augmented with rich media, contextual data, and mixed reality experiences, ensuring your workers always have the correct information on hand to make error-free and safe decisions.
  • Improve Worker Safety – In addition to running on any mobile phone or tablet, Augmentir and Webex are supported on the voice-enabled RealWear HMT-1 and HMT-1Z1 industrial headsets, offering hands-free operation that can be used in nearly any industrial environment. This helps workers stay focused on the task at hand to improve safety and efficiency.
  • Reduce operational costs – Identify areas where the largest improvements can be made within your workforce and across your organization with insights from Augmentir’s AI.

Elevating Hybrid Work and Collaboration in Manufacturing

Hybrid work and collaboration were also central themes during the event, and both are core to Augmentir’s combined solution with Cisco. Augmentir’s digital workflow tools enable rapid creation and delivery of augmented work instructions to help guide workers in day-to-day tasks. This value is extended with Cisco Webex Expert on Demand, which gives workers the ability to quickly connect and collaborate with remote experts wherever they are located.

Cisco also announced Webex Hologram during the WebexOne event. This new augmented reality meeting solution was noted by Jeet Patel, Executive Vice President and General Manager of Cisco Security and Collaboration, as an “industry first” – combining Webex meeting functionality with augmented reality (AR) hardware to create immersive 3D holograms of participants during meetings.

The Stakes Have Never Been Higher

As you can tell, WebexOne was a successful 2-day event with great conversations around collaboration and hybrid work. As Jeet Patel stated during the event, “The stakes have never been higher” in regards to your workforce and working smarter and more efficiently. It’s time to elevate your workforce with Augmentir’s AI-powered Connected Worker solution.

AI-powered technology may be the missing puzzle piece for today’s workforce crisis.

It wouldn’t be fair to attribute all of manufacturing’s current labor shortage woes to the pandemic–there are a lot of factors contributing to this frustrating situation, and many of them were looming long before we ever heard of COVID-19. Did it make things worse? Probably. And the forecast doesn’t look very sunny if you believe what analysts have to say about it. However, despite the current crisis, there is hope yet for manufacturing, specifically in the form of AI and Connected Worker Technology.

Sure, the face of the workforce has changed dramatically. The pool of potential laborers has shrunk. Businesses are being forced to hire people traditionally considered under-qualified. And that leads to a whole host of other complications, including a drop in operational efficiency, a rise in safety issues, and more. The pessimists out there would only see the threat to the global market these challenges pose–the manufacturing industry makes between 11 and 12 percent of the US economy after all.

Good thing we’re optimists at heart! Behind every challenge is an opportunity, as far as we’re concerned. And when it comes to this challenging labor market in particular, we see a huge opportunity for businesses to work with what they’ve got, and still reach operational goals. We have the potential to assess how every worker performs on the job, regardless of the experience and skill set they bring on day one, and use that information to improve individual and enterprise-wide performance. Puts a new light on the labor shortage, doesn’t it?

You can’t fix what you can’t see.

We know using data is important to directing and improving operations–that’s business best practices 101. But insights drawn are only as good as the data itself. And even though there can’t be many businesses out there who haven’t yet jumped on the digital transformation bandwagon, we suspect a lot still rely on outdated data collecting and reporting mechanisms. Those digital spreadsheets had their moment, but we’ve got better options now. Maybe you opted for a Bluetooth software program or distributing a digital survey for your workers. But even with those innovations, what do these data indicators really tell you? Is this reliable and usable information? We didn’t think so either.

Imagine what you could do with real-time data, rather than a summary of operational KPIs at the end of set periods? Even better–imagine capturing the performance metrics of each individual worker rather than their self-generated assessments and observations and having the potential to use that knowledge to improve their skill set and operational proficiency. That’s when data becomes intelligence. And that intelligence has the potential to become so valuable to your enterprise that you’ll wonder how you ever operated without it.

Not convinced you could benefit from data at that level of individual performance? Let us draw an analogy we think you’ll appreciate.

Think of each worker as a newly licensed driver; what happens after passing the road test?

Remember the day you got your driver’s license? We spent hours, if not days and weeks practicing behind the wheel, eagerly waiting to be evaluated by a driving instructor. And let’s be honest, plenty of us winged it, too. Either way, once you show them you can do a three-point-turn and know to stop at the flashing pedestrian crossing sign, everyone walks away with the proof of their proficiency–a driver’s license. 

Then what happened? Nothing. Maybe a celebratory high-five and then eventually years of driving. In one, five, or ten years, what do we know about each person’s capabilities? Unless they’ve wracked up a stack of tickets for traffic violations, we don’t know anything. For all we know, they haven’t sat behind the steering wheel since passing. There is no mechanism to re-assess whether drivers are highly skilled or at-risk of creating an accident in operations.

Now what if we looked at our frontline workers through that lens? You know when they were hired that they could perform X, Y and Z. Some could do even more. But what about after that? What if you could assign an AI-based driver instructor to follow each new driver around for ongoing assessment and intervention in the moment of need?

Put smart connected worker technology in the passenger seat

Adopting connected worker technology powered by artificial intelligence (AI) increases the reliability and credibility of data by analyzing employee performance in ‘real-time.’ That individualized data can be used to connect workers with a company’s digital library of training tools and resources, having an immediate impact on operational proficiency and cultivating a healthy learning environment for workers.

Connected worker technology that leverages AI offers self-guided learning processes when opportunities are identified, reduces human error and improves safety, provides updates on pressing issues and equipment failures and access to a variety of applications. Who wouldn’t want to work for an organization like this? One that offers a high probability of job satisfaction and encourages personal skill development? A culture like that can help the operation on many levels, from reducing operational costs to attracting new employees. 

What now? There is only one connected worker solution that can provide this level of intelligence on your workforce–contact us to learn more about how Augmentir can benefit your business and ask for a demo!

Today’s dynamic and changing manufacturing workforce needs continuous learning and performance support to effectively sustain and deliver effective on-the-job performance.

Every day we hear about the growing manufacturing “Skills Gap” associated with the industrial frontline workforce. The story is that 30% of workers are retiring in the near future and they are taking their 30+ years of tribal knowledge with them, creating the need to quickly upskill their more junior replacements. In an attempt to solve the knowledge gap issues, an entire generation of companies set out to build “Connected Worker” software applications, however, they all relied on the existing training, guidance, and support processes – the only true difference with this approach has been the creation of technology that takes your paper procedures and puts them on glass.

Along with tribal knowledge leaving, today’s workforce is also more dynamic and diverse than previous generations. The 30-year dedicated employees are no longer the norm. The average manufacturing worker tenure is down 17% in the last 5 years and the transient nature of the industrial worker is quickly accelerating. An outgrowth of the COVID pandemic brings forth the Great Resignation, where workers are quitting in record numbers, and worker engagement is down almost 20% in the last 2 years. 

This new manufacturing workforce is changing in real-time – who shows up, what their skills are, and what jobs they need to do is a constantly moving target. The traditional “one size fits all” approach to training, guidance, and performance support is fundamentally incapable of enabling today’s workers to function at their individual peak of safety, quality and productivity. 

Digitizing work instructions is a great start to helping close the manufacturing skills gap, but alone, it won’t help completely solve the problem. We must go a step further to overcome the lack of a skilled and qualified manufacturing workforce. 

Enter the 2nd generation of Connected Worker software, one based on a data-driven, AI-supported approach that helps train, guide, and support today’s dynamic workforces by combining digital work instructions, remote collaboration, and advanced on-the-job training capabilities. 

These 2nd generation connected worker solutions are designed to capture highly granular data streaming from connected frontline workers. These platforms are built from the ground up on an artificial intelligence (AI) foundation. AI algorithms are ideal for analyzing large amounts of data collected from a connected workforce. AI can detect patterns, find outliers, cleanse data and find correlations and patterns that can be used to identify opportunities for improvement and creates a data-driven environment that supports continuous learning and performance support.

This approach aligns perfectly with the dynamic, changing nature of today’s workforce, and is ideally suited to support their 5 Moments of Need, a framework for gaining and sustaining effective on-the-job performance.

For example, Augmentir’s AI-powered connected worker platform leverages anonymized data from millions of job executions to significantly improve and expand its ability to automatically deliver in-app AI insights in the areas of productivity, safety, and workforce development. These insights are central to Augmentir’s True Proficiency™ scoring, which helps to objectively baseline each of your team members for their level of proficiency at every task so organizations can optimize productivity and throughput, intelligently schedule based on proficiency and skill-levels, and personalize the level of guidance and support to meet the needs of each member of the workforce.

This provides significant benefits to Augmentir customers, who leverage Augmentir’s AI in conjunction with the platform’s digital workflow and remote collaboration capabilities, allowing them to deliver continuous improvement initiatives centered on workforce development. These customers are able to utilize the insights generated from Augmentir’s AI to deliver objective performance reviews, automatically identify where productivity is lagging (or has the potential to lag), increase worker engagement, and deliver highly personalized job instructions based on worker proficiency.

Traditionally, there was a clear separation between training and work execution, requiring onboarding training to encompass everything a worker could possibly do, extending training time and leading to inefficiencies. Today, with the ability to deliver training at the moment of need, onboarding can focus on everything a worker will probably do, identifying and closing skills gap in real-time and significantly reducing manufacturing onboarding times. In one particular case, Bio-Chem Fluidics was able to reduce onboarding time for new employees by up to 80%, while simultaneously achieving a 21% improvement in job productivity across their manufacturing operation.

As workers become more connected, companies have access to a new rich source of activity, execution, and tribal data, and with proper AI tools can gain insights into areas where the largest improvement opportunities exist. Artificial Intelligence lays a data-driven foundation for continuous improvement in the areas of performance support, training, and workforce development, setting the stage to address the needs of today’s constantly changing workforce.

These virtual events were a great way to connect with manufacturing professionals and discuss some of the industry’s top challenges and topics – workforce transformation, learning and development, lean manufacturing, and autonomous maintenance.

October was an exciting month in the virtual manufacturing world! Augmentir had the pleasure of participating in several virtual events including the American Manufacturing Summit, Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo, and the Enterprise Wearable Technology Summit (EWTS). Each of these virtual events were a wonderful way to connect with manufacturing professionals and discuss some of the industry’s top challenges and topics – workforce transformation, learning and development, lean manufacturing, and autonomous maintenance. 


The Enterprise Wearable Technology Summit (EWTS) is the longest-running and most comprehensive event dedicated to the business and industrial applications of wearables, including AR/VR/MR glasses and headsets, body-worn sensors, and exoskeletons. This year’s event took place in four bite-sized conference days (every Wednesday from October 6-27, 2021), with community, networking and additional content drops throughout the rest of the month. This unique format allowed for great networking as well as some very valuable sessions. In one of the polls, 32% said that Remote onboarding and training was the top use case for immersive/wearable technology at their company.  

American Manufacturing Summit

The American Manufacturing Summit is a leadership focused meeting designed to bring global manufacturing, operations, engineering, quality and supply chain leaders together to discuss current trends, strategic insights, and best practices in an ever-evolving manufacturing environment. Dave Landreth, Augmentir’s Head of Customer Strategy, had the opportunity to lead a fire-side chat in discussing how Artificial Intelligence and Connected Worker technologies are key pillars of the Industrial Workforce Transformation. We also enjoyed the 1:1 meetings that took place as part of the American Manufacturing Summit. 

Gartner Supply Chain Symposium/Xpo

The Gartner supply chain conference offers attendees a one-stop-shop to access research-backed sessions, get expert advice and problem-solve with colleagues. The main focus of this event is to address the strategic needs of CSCOs and supply chain executives and showcase new technologies that adapt to the ever-changing environment in which they’re operating.

Sessions from the event dealt with purpose-driven supply chains and learnings from the pandemic for the healthcare supply chain, risk assessment and global trade, top trends for smart manufacturing, the future of quality management and supply chain planning, and resolving the dichotomy of logistics outsourcing. 

Key announcements from the virtual manufacturing events:

Continuous improvement, connected worker technology, AI, and data-driven technology were among the top trends from these events. Manufacturing organizations are looking for Connected worker software, like Augmentir, to integrate frontline workers and improve productivity, training, and quality. In addition, as we continue to work remotely and see more supply chain disruptions, AI-based, data-driven technology will be essential to building flexible factories that address these challenges and allow for continuous improvement.

Augmentir, a data-driven, AI-powered Connected Worker solution ensures that your frontline workers can go the extra mile every day by providing training, guidance, and support through the combination of digital work instructions, remote collaboration, and advanced on-the-job training.

In 2009, the Extra Mile America Foundation, a foundation promoting action and empowering positive change, first celebrated the “Extra Mile Day”.  Fast forward to 2014 and 527 US cities declared November 1st as the official “Extra Mile Day”. This day is designated to living life to your full potential, having a positive influence, and always striving to make the world a better place. At Augmentir, we believe in positive change, living to your full potential, and going the extra mile every day. In 2017, our founders decided to continue their journey of creating some of the most important software technology revolutions in manufacturing (Wonderware (1987), Lighthammer (1997), and ThingWorx (2008) by focusing on the most important asset, the frontline workers.

We recognize that today’s industrial workforce is different, and the old way of supporting workers just doesn’t work anymore. The static “one size fits all” approach used in the past, no longer applies to this generation of workers.

Augmentir, is a data-driven, AI-powered Connected Worker solution that ensures that frontline workers can go the extra mile every day by providing training, guidance, and support through the combination of digital work instructions, remote collaboration, and advanced on-the-job training.  

As your workers become more connected, companies have access to a new rich source of activity, execution, and tribal data, and with proper AI tools they can gain real-time insights into areas where the largest improvement opportunities exist. Artificial Intelligence lays a data-driven foundation for continuous improvement in the areas of performance support, training, and workforce development, setting the stage to address the needs of today’s constantly changing workforce.

When it comes to our frontline workers, let’s enable them to go the extra mile, not just on November 1st, but every day, by empowering them with the only AI-powered Connected Worker solution.