Like most businesses, manufacturing is subject to cycles of stagnation and acceleration. Historically, improved manufacturing has led to the growth of the service sector, which in turn has led to a diminished manufacturing base. Manufacturers will no longer be able to produce a “one size fits all” product and hope that the buying public will respond. Consumer input will be required, and processes will have to be adaptable in order to quickly respond to changes in demand.
A proper mix of human resources, know-how, and technology will be needed to meet the challenges that lie ahead. It is a complex journey where manufacturers need to commit to purposeful innovation and agility to regularly adjust, repurpose, and invent.
Regardless, given the important role that manufacturing plays, it would be interesting to look at what we can expect in the next few years. To name a few, Improved Visibility, Increased Flexibility, Environmental Sensitivities, and Higher Quality.
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