Put Up or Shut Up – Manufacturing’s Defining Moment is Here

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Manufacturing is one of the last final frontiers when it comes to innovation. There is still so much opportunity for growth in the manufacturing sector, but the new technologies and innovations we’re seeing today are finally affecting real impact on businesses and the entire industry.

According to PwC’s Global Innovation Survey 2013, “The most innovative manufacturing companies managed a 38% increase in revenues over the past three years. That’s nearly four times the rate of growth of the least innovative companies in the sector.”

What does it mean to innovate in manufacturing?

Manufacturing companies are being asked to come out from behind the veil. As consumers are interacting with brands through various intersections, the general distributor model is no longer enough.

It’s important to consider some of the trends and changes re-shaping the manufacturing sector. Are you prepared for what’s to come? Here are just a few of the innovative technologies disrupting the industry today.

1. Sensor technology and radio frequency identification

Major improvements in sensor technology and radio frequency identification (RFID) tags are bringing the information influx to manufacturing. From self-reporting equipment to systems using AI to conserve energy and capitalize on efficiencies, the emergency of these new technologies the opportunities for implementation are endless.

In fact, General Electric (GE) has estimated that the efficiencies from fully implementing these types of technologies could increase global GDP $10 to $15 trillion by 2030.

This is coming, coming fast, and is widely disruptive. How are you preparing for these kinds of massive changes?

2. Megatrends

Some companies are explicitly linking their product development strategies to global mega-trends like urbanization and geographic shifts in economic power.

There are several things to consider and plan for that will help position companies for growth. It’s important to study:

  • demographic shifts
  • the continued proliferation of globalization
  • resource scarcity
  • a shrinking talent pool
  • new and converging technologies in general that are forcing the pace of change.

3. Beyond the product – back to business basics

According to PwC’s Global Innovation Survey 2013, nearly all the top innovators expected to revisit their business models within the year, and around half anticipate breakthrough or radical changes.
Welcome to a world where nothing, not any time-tested business models, processes or systems are off limits. Top innovators are looking for new value offerings like expanding services, while the least innovative companies are more inclined to focus on lower-cost models.

Sticking with the status quo is not a sustainable option. If you’re not growing, you are dying- and it has never been truer than now as the manufacturing industry leaps far into the future.

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