The manufacturing industry is probably one of the broadest industries of the 21st century. These businesses simply take materials and components to transform them into entirely different products that add value to others’ lives. While the scale of manufacturing can vary, the ultimate purpose remains unchanged.
The manufacturing industry also employs a significant proportion of the general population in different ways. But that does not mean the manufacturing industry is free of all challenges. Just like any other industry, even the manufacturing industry has its challenges. Fortunately, most of these challenges can be solved with technology but more on that later.
What is the Current State of the Manufacturing Industry?
The manufacturing sector has faced many challenges in the past couple of years. But despite these challenges, the manufacturing sector is projected to generate a revenue of $7.96 trillion in 2022. This growth would have never been possible without the application of advanced manufacturing solutions in the manufacturing industry.
Automation has taken over the manufacturing industry for very good reasons. For example, the market size for industrial automation in 2021 was $191.89 billion. Further, the projected market growth will go from $205.86 billion in 2022 to $395.09 billion by 2029. Figures like these show that automated technology has become a key component of the manufacturing industry.
Common Challenges in the Manufacturing Industry
Every sector has challenges, but somehow everyone manages to navigate through those challenges. How? First by understanding the challenges and second by solving them with available resources. So, let’s start with identifying and understanding the current challenges of the manufacturing industry.
1. Inventory Control
Irrespective of your scale of operations, managing your inventory as a manufacturer is never easy. Things like facilitating effective floor-level management have plagued the manufacturing sector for a very long time. As a result, businesses often end up with chaotic operations making it challenging to fulfill customer demands on time.
Effective inventory management can help a manufacturer drive amplified sales with minimal effort. Therefore, most manufacturers are now turning to automation to resolve such complications and facilitate better inventory management. Consequently, they enjoy the on-time completion of projects and reap the benefits of increased fulfillment rates.
2. Forecasting Demands
The next common challenge among manufacturers revolves around forecasting customer demands. But, customer needs and expectations are evolving at an unprecedented rate. Consequently, manufacturers often fail to keep up with these demands resulting in adverse consequences.
The primary issue behind this challenge is the lack of advanced reporting tools. Using such tools can help a manufacturer make accurate estimates about the materials they will need in the near future. In addition, such tools make it much easier to meet customer demands and ensure the overall sales do not suffer.
3. Shortage of Skilled Labors
Of course, technology has come a long way in terms of automating business and manufacturing processes. However, that does not mean that technology solutions are not yet ready to replace human resources just yet. As a result, manufacturers are still reliant on skilled laborers to analyze complexities and manage outputs accordingly.
This calls for effective recruitment where manufacturers can hire the right talents. Hiring the right talents is key to narrowing down the labor gap. One needs to take a more selective approach in choosing the right employees who can work under pressure and meet all organizational requirements.
4. Lack of Efficiency
Efficiency has been a pressing concern for manufacturers for over a century. In most cases, manufacturers will compromise on quality to boost efficiency and reduce costs. But this certainly has a significantly detrimental impact on the business in the long run. Thus, compromising the quality of products is never an option for any manufacturer.
This is where automation and systemization again come to the rescue. Manufacturers need to focus their efforts on automating time-intensive and resource-intensive tasks. Besides that, they need to minimize wastage and simply supply chains to drive better efficiency with minimal effort.
5. Generating Quality Leads
Markets no longer operate via conventional mechanisms where lead generation is not that important. Instead, the current business environment requires proactive steps from the business to reach customers. Failing to do so increases the chances of losing customers to competitors.
Therefore, manufacturers need to leverage advanced technology solutions and combine them with the potential of internet marketing to resolve this issue. When manufacturers take proactive measures to reach customers and generate quality leads, it automatically leaves a positive impact on overall sales.
SAP Solutions to the Rescue
As mentioned earlier, manufacturers now need to empower themselves with advanced technology solutions such as SAP solutions. These solutions can help one keep up with the fast-evolving market demands and drive results.
For instance, there is SAP Production and Planning, which comes with many advanced features and functionalities. Therefore, the solution will help the manufacturer gain better control over all their business processes and eliminate repetitions. Besides that, the solution will also help one manage their production better with effective material procurement planning based on the demands.
Apart from that, manufacturers can even use the SAP ERP system to facilitate better inventory management. The solution comes with different modules that make managing inventory and overall logistics associated with manufacturing much easier. This gives you better visibility over your daily operations to ensure you always have optimum inventory levels to satisfy your production requirements.
Manufacturers also face many challenges with human capital management. Again, this is where the SAP SuccessFactors solution can be very useful. As mentioned earlier, manufacturers often struggle to hire the right talents, which affects their manufacturing potential. Thus, the SAP SuccessFactors solution can help you enhance your recruitment processes to suit the unique requirements of your business.
Finally, the advanced analytical capabilities of the SAP Analytics Cloud solution will help manage all your analytical requirements. This means you no longer need to worry about accurately forecasting future customer demands.
Business environments are evolving with rapid technological advancements. So, manufacturers need to adopt advanced solutions such as the ones from SAP to keep up with the market. Equipping your business with these solutions will help you fuel unmatched growth with minimal effort. So, adopt SAP solutions to save cost and amplify sales with ease.