Proposal and validation of an industry 4.0 maturity model for SMEs

John Henry Ávila Bohórquez, Richard de Jesús Gil Herrera


Purpose: This paper seeks to establish an Industry 4.0 maturity model for manufacturing SMEs. This research presents the characteristics of the proposed model, which takes the elements and the scope of the fourth industrial revolution, as well as the dimensions and assessment scales of some maturity models already applied. Likewise, this document shows the modeling process and the model’s validation in SMEs in the city of Bogotá-Colombia.

Design/methodology/approach: To determine the criteria of the maturity model, 6 major stages have been established: Literature Review,  Development of the model; Validation of the model; Application of the model; Data analysis; and Conclusion and Recommendations.

Findings: Considering the validation of some maturity models shown in the literature review, and aligned with the purpose of this article, 8 dimensions have been established to measure the maturity level of SMEs: Service; Operations; Quality; Products; Documented information- Big Data; Leadership and strategy; Communication; and Culture and people. A model has been generated that allows evaluating the degree of compliance in each dimension for manufacturing SMEs. The model can be applied to companies in any industry. Also, it can determine the degree of implementation compliance of companies in the same sector.

Research limitations/implications: According to the literature reviewed, SMEs, especially those in Latin America, still do not have a culture of applying the elements of Industry 4.0. Therefore, in the research, it was not easy to understand the intrinsic variables of Industry 4.0 that SMEs have applied in different areas, which does not allow us to have the current context of SMEs and from that perspective to have a better simulation of the business model maturity.

Practical implications: The model presented in this document serves as a basis for SMEs in Latin America to establish a baseline measurement in relation to the application of Industry 4.0 elements in companies.

Social implications: What is intended with this work is to frame a baseline so that companies can understand their current maturity level in terms that industry 4.0 could cover. Likewise, they can generate actions for the appropriation of new technologies that allow them to be more competitive. This document can be taken and applied by those entrepreneurs companies who wish to measure their operations.

Originality/value: The essential point for the generation of the maturity level measurement model is focused on determining the necessary dimensions on which the evaluation is based. In the literature found, most models focus their dimensions on measuring the digital in their processes and tangentially evaluate the organizational structure and the relationship between them. Additionally, the authors who address the organization as a whole do not reveal the details for SMEs to self-evaluate. The models found have only been implemented to evaluate one company alone or individually. This model presents the core dimensions holistically and explicitly, taking important criteria such as quality, service, communication, and the culture of all employees.  Additionally, it shows in detail the model that allows SMEs of the manufacturing sector to self-assess themselves in each dimension and in turn the degree of the business sector in which they are or belong.


Industry 4.0, Cyber-Physical, models, maturity levels, small and medium enterprises (SMEs)

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Licencia de Creative Commons 

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Journal of Industrial Engineering and Management, 2008-2024

Online ISSN: 2013-0953; Print ISSN: 2013-8423; Online DL: B-28744-2008

Publisher: OmniaScience