Manufacturing is one of the major and most significant industries across the world. Tremendous developments have been witnessed transitioning at a fast pace. Here are ten trends that will lead the manufacturing industry in the coming years.
AI and machine learning
Manufacturing is a massive industry. For changes to be implemented across the entire industry, it will take a lot of time. The increased appetite for the use of AI and machine learning will not be different. In such a vast and complex industry, machine learning, AI, and improved analytics offer plenty of opportunities. They can improve efficiency and elevate profit margins. These are two factors that the manufacturing industry can’t dare ignore. The more difficulties a company faces, the greater the opportunity to utilize these technologies to achieve that competitive edge that most organizations desire to succeed.
These technologies are not fixed in one area of business. They can better perform in every department. Whether it’s in the supply chain, factory floor, or in client relations AI, advanced analytics and machine learning can significantly improve a company’s operations.
In the opinion of experts, these technologies provide three fundamental values. They include scale, speed, and convenience. Speed and scale refer to a company’s ability of AI to automate industrial functions without assigning a group of employees designated tasks. These systems reduce the time invested in various jobs.
Today, various manufacturing organizations participating in the global market have accepted AI. Not many firms have decided on their fates when it comes to AI, advanced analytics, and machine learning. However, the number is expected to increase in the coming years.
5G and smart manufacturing
The fifth-generation innovation is one of the most anticipated technology trends that is expected to be launched in the coming year. Several cellular communication networks have, for a long time, been suffering from saturation challenges. In most advanced countries, the utilization of 4G is extensive. In developing nations, 3G is still being utilized but with similar outcomes. But, organizations can’t heavily depend on these technologies for their daily operations. However, 5G has vowed to surpass the expectations of clients and companies in connection bandwidth, capacity, minimum latency, and many more.
5G technology is a feature of the universal digital transformation. It’s expected to provide industrial manufacturing organizations with faster connections. When these companies start to increase their utilization of cloud, centralized tracking, and quality inspection, 5G will already be in operation. With widespread coverage and stable and more reliable connections, an ecosystem of smart manufacturing will be born.
3D printing technology
This is the other massive digital transformation in the manufacturing industry. 3D printing technology is expected to permit organizations to make cheaper and faster prototypes. This is a more cost-effective way for item designers to troubleshoot and test their commodities.
Additionally, it enables industrial manufacturers to produce commodities in high demand. Before, companies had to manufacture the product and then warehouse them.
The aerospace and automotive manufacturing industries have already embraced 3-D. The year 2021 will witness many sectors, especially the manufacturing industries adopting 3-D technology.
Energy has been more of a challenge than a trend. However, with the recent systems being involved, the industrial manufacturing sector energy optimization will improve. This is the only solution to pursue the sustainability of the manufacturing sector and the conservation of the environment.
Predictive maintenance innovation
Technology in software, IoT technology, and connectivity is growing at an alarming pace. In the coming years, a more improved and valuable technique of monitoring equipment utilizing multiple performance metrics will be realized. With this innovation, it will be effortless for manufacturing organizations to comprehend better how the process and system works. They will also be aware of the possible instance they may fail. This type of technology will prevent untimely equipment breakdown while assisting manufacturers to save time, resources, and money.
Internet of things (IoT)
This technology has revolutionized numerous sectors. According to a prediction, about 20.4 billion connected gadgets will be in operation worldwide before 2021. Research conducted by Business insider Intelligence noted that this technology would expand to over $3 trillion yearly before 2026.
The senior Vice president at Hitachi Solutions in the United States, Michael strand, noted that IoT is providing incredible opportunities for transforming and improving operations in all business sectors. The manufacturing industry enjoys this innovation through the evolution of materials, a transformation of processes, and the production chain. By 2021, this innovation will enable the industry to evolve with an elevated digital-first business setting.
Agility and responsiveness
Technology will force manufacturers to concentrate on improving their responsiveness and agility because of changing customer demands and market conditions. Decreasing the time it takes to create, receive, schedule, and process a client’s order is becoming increasingly crucial to the average manufacturing outfit.
This is beneficial to the manufacturing companies. They will be able to match production cycles and the emerging product demand levels closely. The more successfully an organization can match those two essentials, the more agility they can pump in their operations.
Increased Distributed Manufacturing
The trend of small-scale, locally distributed manufacturing as an alternative for more significant plants, has already been in progress for years. However, more growth is expected as the global logistics market becomes more complex, and manufacturers get more connected. As time goes, it will be common for end products to be packaged and assembled close to their final destination. This will be a strategy for companies to cut costs on freight and also decrease lead time. This is an excellent opportunity to increase value in the form of high responsiveness. However, it will add complexity to the already complex processes.
For industrial manufacturing firms to absorb this trend, much will be involved. They will need to have a high degree of visibility, especially when it comes to their existing production processes.
Better customer engagement
Internet of things encompasses the complete series of everyday items. Consumers will soon realize that products are not only for purchase but elements for connection. Once this takes the course, it will have an impact on the way manufacturing is done, mainly when producing products. Companies will be forced to devise ways to interact with and meet the demands of clients.
Product customization is going to lead many companies to gather data and work in partnership with consumers. Though, this trend will go beyond this. The more consumers perceive a company’s products within the context of services and platforms, the more the firm will have to leverage any feedback or data to provide new sources of value.
Slow Industry 4.0 adoption
This bullet point has been conveyed in many predictions in the past few years. Undoubtedly, it will continue to appear in the year 2021, and even after that. Technology that is empowering modern manufacturing is slowly becoming more complex and is tremendously gaining wider adoption.
Early adopters of this technology are already providing value for their clients in ways they didn’t before. For instance, predicting the order for your clients in advance can radically reduce the lead time. Additionally, you will dramatically improve product turnaround.
A full industry 4.0 capability hasn’t been fully realized in most organizations. A change is expected, especially with technologies that will see this become a reality and fully functional even in the most Luddite-filled operations.
Industrial Manufacturing Stats and Growth Projections in 2021
1. World trade in manufactured items has more than doubled
World trade in manufactured goods has increased between the years 2000 and 2017, coming from $4.8 trillion to $12.2 trillion. The United States share of world trade has risen from 7.6% to 8.7 %. This is according to the statistics released by the World Trade Organization.
2. Manufacturers carry out 64 % of all private sectors R&D
Manufacturers around the world have driven more innovation than all other sectors. R&D in industrial manufacturing rose from $135.5 billion in the year 200 to $ 252 billion in 2017.
3. Manufactures consumer 30% of a nation’s energy
Manufacturers are the leaders when it comes to energy consumption. Industrial operators consume 32.3 quadrillions Btu of energy. This is according to the U.S Energy information administration statistics.
4. The cost of federal rules and regulations falls on manufacturers
Small manufacturers are the ones most affected by this. Manufacturers pay $19,564 per worker on average to abide by federal laws. Small manufacturers with few workers spend 2.5 times more than the amount paid by significant manufacturers.
5. Industrial manufacturers have witnessed tremendous growth
In the past few decades, manufacturers have had more visits to the bank. Statistics reveal that the output per hour for all employees in the sector has elevated by 2.25 times. Productivity has roughly increased by 1.8 for all non-farm businesses.
6. Every $1.00 spent in manufacturing another $1.82 is added
Every dollar spent in manufacturing $1.82 is added to the economy. This is the premier multiplier effect of any economic sector. Also, with one employee in the manufacturing industry, another four workers are hired elsewhere. This is according to NAM calculations statistics.
7. About 92% of manufacturing workers are eligible for health insurance
Industrial manufacturing has one of the highest percentages of employees that qualify for health benefits that are provided by the employer. This is according to Kaiser Family Foundation Statistics.
8. Manufactured products export have expanded substantially
Manufacturing companies have had the opportunity to export their end products. This has been successful due to the partnerships that have been created between nations. This is according to U.S Commerce Department statistics.
9. Manufacturers export about half of U.S manufacturing output
Of all the U.S manufactured product exports, half were sold to the countries the U.S has trade agreements with. This is according to U.S commerce department statistics.
10. Foreign direct investments in the U.S, especially in manufacturing, has exceeded $1.6 trillion
In the past decade, the U.S has witnessed $1,607.2 billion when it comes to direct investments. The figure is anticipated to bulge, especially with the number of ventures expected to take place soon. This is according to the Bureau of Economic analysis.
As digital manufacturing progresses in the coming years, the industrial manufacturing sector will have to keep up with the evolution. For some companies, this will be a hard task, but it’s crucial to do everything to survive in the ever ballooning global competitive market.