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037: The Value of Investing in Future Technologies

Posted By Digital Enterprise Society, Wednesday, January 29, 2020
Updated: Tuesday, January 28, 2020

 037: The Value of Investing in Future Technologies 


On this episode, Thom Singer and Craig Brown welcome Mike Hughes, Program Director for Digital Engineering at Cummins, Inc. As a digital engineering leader, Mike has a front-row seat to the rapid technological changes that are taking place in today’s competitive market.   He understands the need for companies and people to stay ahead of these changes and offers his advice for both. The future of PLM needs big thinkers, and this episode offers ideas on how anyone can become the kind of thought leader that will successfully transition into the future of the digital transformation space.

On today’s podcast, you will learn:

How to Stay Ahead of Rapidly Changing Technology

  • Anticipate the highest trajectory of future projects. 

  • Identify and focus on disruptive items that are moving quickly. 

  • Look to successful businesses for complex models of success.

  • Keep track of technology maturity to know when to invest.  

Training the Next Generation on Legacy Systems 

  • Highlight the multitude of positions available within each department.

  • Offer strategic and innovative recruiting ideas for recent college graduates. 

  • Set expectations and assign exceptional managers to train recent graduates. 

  • Provide development and training opportunities that highlight the variety of positions 

  • Identify the changing technologies that require increased skill sets in order to remain competitive. 

A Look at the Future of 3D Printing

  • 3D printing offers production of more parts and less assembly lines. 

  • Tools and printer technology are improving and still maturing. 

  • Product creation is no longer limited to items that have to be nailed or bent. 

  • 3D printing will require increased skill sets for design, simulation, programming and more.

How to Become a Big Thinker

  • Learn more about yourself identify and develop your strengths. 

  • Ask the kinds of questions that can solve future industry problems. 

  • Embrace a problem-solving mindset in all of your work and training. 

  • Understand the direction that businesses are moving toward. 

  • Track how technologies successfully move through industries.


Mike Hughes is the Program Director of Digital Engineering and Transformation at Cummins, Inc.  His focus is to drive the strategy and execution of modeling, simulation, visualization, and related practices to accelerate the product development life cycle. This includes all elements of the digital enterprise or digital engineering concepts. His team focuses on improving the skills, tools, processes, and data management around M&S disciplines globally.  Mike received his Bachelor's degree from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business and also collaborates with the Purdue University Polytechnic Institute Digital Enterprise Center.

Tags:  3D Printing  Additive Manufacturing  PLM 

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