The Digital Imperative for Manufacturers
It’s ingrained in the American psyche — the scrappy, hardworking individualism, resourcefulness, and sheer determination that leads to entrepreneurial success. The only trouble with that trope is that scrappy is just not scalable. While brute force and a commitment to the cause are helpful when starting a new business, growing a manufacturing enterprise requires a more deliberate approach. And in today’s business climate, it requires a solid digital foundation. There’s no time to waste. Manufacturers looking to stay competitive need to serve their customers in new ways, become more agile and flexible, and attract the right skills and talent.
Technology is the Scalability Enabler
It’s no longer enough to have the lowest prices. Manufacturers are becoming distributors themselves, selling directly to consumers. As a result, exceptional service is the new mandate. Technologies including CRM and eCommerce help manufacturers identify customers’ expectations and design workflows to meet or exceed those expectations in every interaction.
The pandemic exposed the vulnerabilities of companies that lack a strong technology initiative. As supply chains ground to a halt, manufacturers without the agility to pivot, retool or redirect found themselves in serious trouble. More agile companies stepped up their digital transformation, investing further in labor and cost-saving technologies including workflow automation and warehouse management solutions.
As skilled workers become increasingly difficult to find, manufacturers must find ways to retain and retrain the workforce they have. Automation investments eliminate manual tasks, freeing personnel to spend more time on value-added and customer-facing tasks. Retraining workers to leverage the technology tools improves retention rates by providing opportunities for advancement. Digitally-enabled manufacturers embrace employer and people management solutions to better support and empower their workforces.
Manufacturers’ success depends on their ability to scale operations profitably. Digital technologies are the scalability enabler, allowing manufacturers to gain new agility, deliver exceptional service, and leverage a skilled workforce. Learn much more about the topic in our white paper, Scrappy Won’t Scale: The Digital Imperative for Manufacturers. Download your free copy here.