Blog describing the top 5 evolving technologies for the digital plant and industrial markets in 2020

Digital Plant | 5 Evolving Technologies in 2020

Chris Lewis, Recruiter at FMC Global Talent
Chris Lewis, Recruiter at FMC Global Talent

Traditional industrial and advanced manufacturing markets are increasingly under pressure to improve efficiency.  

The phrase “data is the new oil” has been coined and debated for many years now. Agree or disagree, data is undeniably a source of significant value for businesses to better understand how they operate. 

As each year passes, energy and utility companies evolve technologies to help harness and unlock their data. Whilst there has been some hesitation in businesses investing in digital transformation, the progressive nature and continuous improvements of these technologies means integration will only rise.  

From the conversations I’m having in the market, here are the 5 evolving technologies I feel will have the biggest impact on the industrial market in 2020.  


For software and technology to continue advancing, cybersecurity will play a critical role. Cyberattacks are a growing threat to critical infrastructure and is increasingly being targeted during political conflict. 

The repercussions of a power plant being compromised by another country could be fatal, and so the fear is that digital transformation is the gateway to cyberwarfare, rather than helping businesses realise operational excellence. 


Blockchain is a secure way to record data such as transactions for renewable energy certificates or data about a specific asset. As the renewable market grows, more and more energy certificates will be in circulation, hence the demand for a secure record and trading system.  

Blockchain allows the possibility of a transactive energy marketplace and whilst this is currently exclusive to small scale projects or existing grid operations, it is forecasted to be worth $3b to the energy market by 2025.  


IoT continues to show a ton of potential for businesses, particularly asset-monitoring as it enables tracking, monitoring and analytics of an asset in a single solution. Smart sensors not only improve asset efficiency, but also worker safety, costs and downtime.  

As IoT continues to evolve, you can expect businesses to take advantage of 5G capabilities in 2020, as well as its continuous adoption and presence in autonomous vehicles (specifically for supply chain and logistics in industrial sectors). 


Whilst the rate of AI adoption is higher than any other digital transformation technology, some businesses are over automating, which for recent adopters is confusing AI’s true value.  

In 2020, businesses will continue to experiment with AI to understand where it will add the most value to operations, customers, waste management, preventing asset downtime and unlocking data withholding the most value. 

Digital Twins 

Would this be a “top 5 software” styled blog without mentioning Digital Twin technology? It’s virtually impossible not to recognize a solution which has completely changed the way we design and maintain facilities.  

Digital Twin technology is becoming accessible, and in 2020 I foresee companies such as Bentley Systems to help businesses transform their physical and engineering data into 4D designs to extract real time and accurate performance insights. 

FMC Digital Plant 

FMC Digital Plant is a team of individuals who are delivering the key sales, technical and leadership talent for digital transformation companies around the world.    

We have an excellent track record of introducing the most forward-thinking industry 4.0 professionals with companies like the above, who are looking to drive changes and revolutionise the traditional industrial sectors. 

If you’re interested in learning more about the opportunities we’re currently working on or would like to find out how FMC can support your recruitment needs in 2020, contact me at or call me on +44 (0) 1522 812 458.