Time for Small Manufacturers to Embrace Smart Manufacturing

Smart Manufacturing
  1. Smart manufacturing technologies will transform manufacturing, affecting quality and productivity, relationships across supply chains, skill requirements, and investment decisions. The pace of change will vary somewhat across industries and market segments, but small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) are not immune to the changes.
  2. Smart manufacturing can reduce scrap and rework, minimize work-in-process, eliminate production bottlenecks and improve equipment efficiency, speed new product introductions, and allow more product customization and variety, while reducing costs and potentially raising profitability.
  3. SMMs cannot afford to remain on the sidelines. Smart manufacturing is already disrupting supply chains.
  4. Smart manufacturing is not accomplished simply by adding new production technologies to existing factories. Buying new equipment without a clear strategy and objectives will be a waste of money.
  5. Effective cybersecurity practices are absolutely essential.
  6. Get help. Resources are available at local universities and MEPs that can help SMMs evaluate appropriate technologies, set strategy and define objectives, train workers, and work through implementation, including cybersecurity.
  7. Get started. Waiting will not provide any advantage but will increase risks that competitors, or even customers, will take your business.
  8. Effective implementation of smart manufacturing technologies requires cultural change within the company, including buy-in from production workers, supervisors and senior management. Starting on small pilot projects and demonstrating the benefits is the first step.

--

--

A “think-and-do” tank focused on the future of American manufacturing http://mforesight.org

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
MForesight

MForesight

A “think-and-do” tank focused on the future of American manufacturing http://mforesight.org