As the calendar turns, rubber manufacturing companies are reflecting on all of the changes that occurred in the past 12 months, and are planning ahead for a prosperous future. As a manufacturer, your day likely revolves around keeping your customer base happy, ensuring that your plant floor is working efficiently, having plenty of inventory on hand to meet demand, or getting your job done on time. These are just some of the many challenges facing a manufacturer, but below we discuss some approaches to how manufacturers can be more successful and keep ahead of the marketplace:
Develop Your Workforce
Your staff is the motor that makes your company go. They are an invaluable asset. Creating a great and thriving work environment that fully engages employees should be a major priority. This will also help you attract the next generation of manufacturing workers while improving the skill set of your current employees. Engage them completely in important company decisions and watch your work environment blossom.
Educate Yourself on Emerging Technologies
There have been many recent breakthroughs with new technologies, specifically in areas such as robotics and additive manufacturing. These advancements are enabling technology to become more affordable and accessible to small and mid-sized domestic manufacturers. Stay abreast of emerging technology trends like these and how they might impact your business.
Invest in Sustainability
There are many positives to embracing environmentally safe practices, such as gaining a competitive edge, reducing waste, and operating more efficiently. Additionally, there are federal incentives for U.S. manufacturers looking to incorporate sustainable practices. See the following links for more information:
- SBA – Tax credits for energy efficiency
- Manufacturing.gov – Innovation initiatives
- Selectusa.gov – Federal programs & incentives
Obtaining internationally recognized certifications and embracing quality management systems can help you become more marketable to suppliers and customers. Following industry standards shows your commitment to quality, efficiency, and customer satisfaction. New ISO updates have been of particular interest to manufacturers of late.
Optimize Your Supply Chain
Your supply chain significantly impacts your effectiveness and competitiveness. Don’t just focus on the price and capabilities of your supply chain. Thinking outside the box about better collaborations, integrated systems and synergies can bring your business to the next level.
Experts are predicting substantial mobility growth in manufacturing. There are a wide variety of mobile apps that can assist with the following:
Product Tracking: Get instant access to real-time inventory counts and a cost-effective way to comply with simple barcode scans and government regulation.
Streamlined Communication: Manufacturers can fine-tune the customer experience with instant access to order information and increase employee efficiency with automated scheduling and reporting.
Improved Safety: Wearable tech is part of the manufacturing mobility trend. These wearables can track employees’ health if they are overheating, prevent injuries from cold climates by triggering an environment change and alert management if an injury occurs.