Digital in NRW - The Competence Center for Small and Medium-Sized Companies



The digital transformation challenges medium-sized enterprises. "Digital in NRW - The Competence Center for Small and Medium-Sized Companies" prepares the topics of digitalization and networking specifically for small and medium-sized enterprises in North Rhine-Westphalia and across national boundaries, and offers free and practice-oriented offers for joint implementation. Whether information on the field of industry 4.0 topics or the implementation of specific technologies: The competence center allows SMEs to approach the industry 4.0 - regardless of the current level of digitalization of their products and processes. At the WZL especially the demonstration factory Aachen (DFA) and the Smart Automation Lab are used as practical demonstrators.

There are three specific objectives:

  1. Addressing the SMEs in a broadly effective but still targeted way
  2. Digitization of products, processes and services
  3. Support opportunities altong the skills chain

Following this link you find an online questionnaire, which enables you to determine your companie's degree of maturity in the fields of Industry 4.0.

The questionnaire is sorted by topic and can be completed in parts or as a whole (duration: approximately 60 minutes).Please add "WZL" after filling in your name. The questionnaire results will be sent to you as a follow-up. We will also contact you and make an appointment with you to present and analyze the results.

Research questions

  • Inform: What exactly is Industry 4.0? How can a particular company benefit from it?
  • Demonstrate: Digitalization live and in color - does it really exist? How do companies get the proof?
  • Qualify: What skills do SMEs need for digitization? How can these be built?
  • Design: Is a company ready for digitization yet? What are concrete next steps?
  • Implementate: How can digitalisation be implemented in a company? How can they find the right partners?

Further information about the competence center and the entire offer can be found here.

The Mittelstand 4.0 Competence Centre Dortmund is part of the funding initiative "Mittelstand 4.0 - Digital Production and Work Processes", which is funded by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy (BMWi) within the framework of the promotion "Mittelstand Digital - Strategies for the Digital Transformation of Business Processes".

Research support
The project is supervised by the German Center for aerospace (DLR).

Project period: january 2016 – december 2018

In the Rhineland, the machine tool laboratory WZL and the Research Institute for Rationalization FIR at RWTH Aachen are working on intelligent production technology. In the Metropole Ruhr, the Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics (IML) and the Effizienz Cluster LogistikRuhr are experts in intelligent logistics and value-added networks.
In East-Westphalia-Lippe, universities and research institutes of the top cluster "it's OWL" provide support in the fields of intelligent automation and intelligent products and production systems.

Felix Basse, M.Sc.
Herwart-Opitz-Haus 53B 512
Tel.: +49 241 80-28674
Fax: +49 241 80-22293