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We're quickly approaching the time to turn our clocks back on November 6th and which also tells us to start addressing some impending challenges coming in 2023:

Time to commit to Smart Factories: As older equipment continues to be phased out, it is time to fully commit to smart technology to keep pace with your competitors and directly connect to smart supply chains. Although the smart factory is considered the final stage of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, small and medium sized manufacturers can scale and implement smart-factory technologies appropriately. Even taking an incremental and modular approach can yield significant gains in productivity and profits.

Time to reassess your supply chain and focus on reshoring: Manufacturers need to determine if moving production or prioritizing local suppliers makes sense. Would a hybrid model for supply chains be effective? Clearly, the decision to reshore is a balance between price and risk. Material, manufacturing, labor, logistic, transportation and tariff costs, all need to be considered.

Time to appreciate your employees: The realities of the challenging labor market have required manufacturers to make more with less. Upskilling and training for committed employees will reap benefits and move your company forward. A resilient workforce will survive supply chain disruptions. Business owners need to recognize the need to remain flexible in an ever-changing manufacturing environment, including flexibility in addressing employee requests, such as remote work flexibility, work life balance and technological upgrades and solutions. Addressing employees’ needs can directly translate into competitive advantages and enhanced economic performance.

Time to commit to ESG Goals: Not only are your customers seeking sustainable and ecological friendly products, but manufacturers will also soon see these ESG requirements in government, municipal, institutional, and commercial contracts. Manufacturing accounts for about 1/3 of global greenhouse emissions. Governments are taking great strides to combat climate change and are expecting manufacturers to rethink their operations and move toward low carbon or carbon-neutral manufacturing systems.

Time to diversify the workforce: It is the time to go outside the box to recruit new talent and partner with employment programs which are designed to help women, refugees, formerly incarcerated individuals, and other under-served populations. The widening of the recruiting pool can address the serious workforce shortages faced by large and small manufacturers alike. Diversity in the workforce encourages constructive dialogue, collaboration, creativity, and innovation which can foster a sustainable approach to manufacturing performance in an ever-changing world.

Your SEWN Regional Director will gladly have a conversation with you to address any of these needs in your company.


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