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Without proper IT governance Industry 4.0 won't work, Steria Mummert says (Photo: Kuka)

Failing IT governance is jeopardizing "Industry 4.0," according to a new report from German IT management consultants Steria Mummert.

The study cites uncontrolled growth of software in the area of manufacturing as production facilities are networked. As a result, the consultants say there isn't enough IT governance to assure the compatibility of corporate data across the various production facilities.

"Manufacturing companies need to commit more strongly to the issue of IT governance," Torsten Kreis, a Steria Mummert consultant, said in a press statement.

In first instance, he added, companies should address basic IT issues and connect data sources in a sensible way. Then, they can go to the next step.

"Everybody may be talking about Industry 4.0, but by far not all the homework has been done," Kreis said. Insufficient IT governance is risky because data incompatibility impedes the networking of order systems or system landscapes in the logistics area, he added.

Steria Mummert noted that Industry 4.0 isn't just about networking machines  but also requires the "horizontal" integration of materials, energy and information interfaces within one company or across several companies.