Bob Jones, Executive VP of global sales, marketing and services for Siemens PLM Software, was among the leaders who participated in an industry panel during yesterday’s announcement of HP’s new strategic alliance with Deloitte, the worldwide leader in professional services and digital supply chain transformations, aimed at accelerating the digital transformation of the $12 trillion global manufacturing industry with HP’s groundbreaking 3D printing solutions.
We caught up with Bob to learn how Siemens is transforming the global manufacturing industry with digitalization and additive manufacturing.
Q. What is Siemens’ perspective on the analog-to-digital transformation that is upon us?
A. It’s important to understand the distinction between “digitization” and “digitalization.” It’s the difference between taking an analog process and using digital technologies to mimic it for efficiency gains—and leveraging digital data to fundamentally transform processes, leading to more opportunities for disruptive innovation and new business models.
Digitalization is changing our daily lives, transforming entire industries and revolutionizing the global economy. The products we use every day, how they are produced and the enterprises that produce them will be dramatically changed by digitalization.
Today's market-leading companies are already seizing opportunities created by digitalization to accelerate innovation, employ new business models, and respond to dynamic customer and market demands with greater speed, agility, quality and at less cost.
Q. What does this transformation mean for companies that design and create?
A. Every company is on its own unique digital journey and is looking to digitalization to create differentiating value for its customers. Companies of all sizes are transforming into digital enterprises that produce smart, individualized products augmented by a digital communication language enabling innovative data-driven services and support.
Digital enterprises are thriving by digitally linking their product development and production operations to customers and global supply chain networks, which is changing the way ideas come to life and the way products and factories are utilized.
Firewire Surfboards, a small-sized surfboard manufacturer in Carlsbad, Calif., is a customer that we've helped to innovate the next generation of surfboards. Firewire is using the power of digitalization to revolutionize the surfing experience by constructing performance-engineered and eco-friendly surfboards individually tuned to each customer’s surfing style and needs.
Newport News Shipbuilding is another example of how our customers are undergoing a digital transformation. Newport News is leveraging 3D model data as the foundation for a “drawingless ship” that can be built and maintained through electronic work instructions on tablets.
Q. What role does additive manufacturing play in Siemens’ vision for the future?
A. Additive manufacturing is a disruptive force that is reshaping the way digital enterprises conceive, design, produce, distribute and service products. With additive manufacturing, companies are reimagining products that perform better, have more strength, less weight and are individualized to a customer’s personal needs—and are realizing these products on-demand and without the need for long lead-time and expensive tooling.
Siemens uses additive manufacturing for industrial production and we provide market-leading software and production automation solutions for our customers. Siemens manufacturing divisions are already making breakthroughs in the areas of designing components with performance-enhancing complex internal geometry that can only be 3D printed, dramatically reducing lead-time (for example, Siemens gas turbine burner), 3D printing spare parts on-demand, and the streamlining of supply chains.
However, while additive manufacturing is proving to create business value, gaps in the value chain must be closed in order to scale-up its use for mass industrial production. Costly data conversions between software applications, uncontrolled data and process steps, scarce expertise, and 3D printers stranded on islands are just some of the gaps that must be addressed in order to advance additive manufacturing into mainstream product development, production and business operations.
Our vision at Siemens is to industrialize additive manufacturing by enabling control of the complete process via a connected and continuous digital thread from concept to finished 3D printed part and extending into field use. We’re delivering on our vision by offering integrated additive manufacturing software solutions for all primary design, engineering, manufacturing planning and production functions—an end-to-end product development system underpinned by digital twins, production automation hardware, expertise, and a vibrant ecosystem of partners and customers.
Q. How does the collaboration between Siemens and HP play a role in Siemens’ vision for additive manufacturing?
A. We recognize that Siemens cannot industrialize additive manufacturing and transform the global manufacturing industry alone. Siemens and HP have a long-standing relationship and we share a vision for helping our customers compete by taking a comprehensive and integrated end-to-end approach to industrialize additive manufacturing—and to transform products and how they are made.
We believe HP 3D printing technology with Multi Jet Fusion and voxel-level control need modern digital design and production automation tools to unlock the full power of the technology—and scale-up additive manufacturing for the industrial mass production—and we look forward to continuing to work with HP to realize our shared vision.
About Bob Jones
Robert Jones is executive vice president of global sales, marketing and services for Siemens PLM Software, a business unit of the Siemens Digital Factory Division. He and his team are responsible for the company’s sales, marketing and service delivery on a global basis. He works in partnership with Siemens PLM Software’s zone sales leaders to aggressively target geographic, industry and strategic corporate opportunities. Prior to his current position Jones was senior vice president and managing director of the Americas with responsibility for sales, sales support and services delivery in North and South America.
Before assuming his Americas role, Jones led sales, sales support and services delivery for Siemens PLM Software’s U.S. organization and prior to that, was responsible for the company’s global General Motors account. Throughout his career with Siemens, Jones has held a number of leadership roles in both sales and marketing. His responsibilities have included direct and indirect sales and marketing strategies for the PLM portfolio to the automotive OEM and supplier industry.
Before joining Siemens PLM Software as an account executive, Robert began his career in product development at Johnson Controls, Automotive Systems Group (JCI/ASG). During his tenure at JCI/ASG, he was a chief engineer responsible for mechanism programs to OEMs in America, Asia and Europe.
Jones has a master's degree in Mechanical Engineering from Virginia Polytechnic University and a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from Western Michigan University.
Robert and his wife, Holly, reside in Northville, Michigan, with their four sons.