Is Traditional Manufacturing Feeling The Heat From Additive Manufacturing?

KERRY STEVENSON| September 16, 2019
IS TRADITIONAL MANUFACTURING FEELING THE HEAT FROM ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING?
The premise is that somehow 3D printing / additive manufacturing techniques are about to overpower the traditional manufacturing processes of injection molding, casting, stamping, etc. This premise is very far from the truth, and Laird explores several reasons why this is the case.

Spotlight

Neal Electric Corp.

For just over a quarter of a century, Neal Electric has been providing proficient, reliable electrical services in Southern California. In the San Diego area alone, we have been a key partner in the modernization and maintenance of numerous commercial and industry infrastructures. As technologies and customer requirements have changed, our areas of expertise have expanded and diversified to anticipate future needs.

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Lead Generation for Manufacturers: 5 Effective Techniques That Work

Article | January 4, 2022

Lead generation for manufacturers has always been tough due to a lack of knowledge about new technology and trends that can help them generate more business leads. There are still a lot of small and mid-sized manufacturing companies that rely on antiquated manufacturer lead generation methods. In this article, we'll discuss some proven methods for generating leads that can help you increase your company's sales and improve your overall return on investment. "Don’t think of your lead as "LEADS." Instead, think of them as people who are frustrated because understanding and buying your product is too hard. Your job is to make it easy for them to learn about your product and get started. " —Andy Pitre, VP of Product, HubSpot So let's get started. Factors That Must Be Aligned to Drive New Business Leads Landing Pages Landing pages are mini-websites embedded into your site. To deliver an experience that speaks directly to the user's intent, marketers use landing pages. Create unique landing pages for every industrial lead generation campaign. Calls-To-Action To generate quality leads, you need to have a strong call to action (CTA). CTAs are usually buttons that allow users to submit information, visit a landing page, or download an e-book or white paper. Your CTA must be compelling. Give your prospects a reason to click and remove any barriers to the click. CTAs should be bold, high-contrast, and easily identifiable. Forms Without forms, it is impossible to collect leads. Therefore, visitors will be asked to fill out forms that collect their contact information in exchange for an offer. Offers Every lead contains a transaction. A company provides a valuable service in exchange for a prospect's contact information. You won't get many leads unless you provide value to your potential customers. This offer comes in the form of an e-book, consultation, coupon code, or whitepaper. To generate more leads, make compelling offers. Website The above components can't exist if you don't have a website. If you want to emphasize your business, you need to generate quality leads. Why? Because most of today's B2B buyers are millennials, who are highly tech-savvy and increasingly conduct their supplier research online. How to Generate Manufacturing Leads: 5 Effective Techniques Create a Website That Converts "The lead generation process starts by finding out where our target market ‘lives’ on the web." – Wayne Davis Your website should be a trusted source of quality leads. Unfortunately, many companies lose sight of this and develop websites that are cumbersome and difficult to browse, causing a rift between you and your potential customers. Don't expect people to behave if your site doesn't encourage them to act. Your website should have clear "call to action" buttons and lead capture options that allow visitors to contact you in a simple and pleasant way. Additionally, there are website optimization tools available, including PageSpeed Insights, Hotjar, Google Optimize, and WAVE. All of the above-mentioned website optimization tools provide complimentary services. So, this is the most accessible and most reliable approach to generating web leads. Make Descriptive Infographics Infographics are a great way to provide prospects with helpful information while motivating them to contact you. Most importantly, infographics establish your company as a thought leader and unconsciously identify you with industry authority. According to recent surveys, Nearly 41% of respondents indicated that infographics and illustrations are the most effective solutions for achieving their business objectives. On social media, infographics receive three times the number of shares as other types of content. Articles that included infographics received 72% more views than standard articles. A great infographic has a great design. If your organization lacks an in-house graphics team, you can simply locate a freelance designer to create a stunning infographic for you. Your infographics are ageless pieces of material that can be reused for smart marketing and lead generation manufacturing. Here's an example of an infographic from Digital Marketing Philippines from 2019 that received over 1,600 shares and is jam-packed with data and text. In this way, you can see how the company may have gotten its leads from these 1600 shares, each of which is a potential customer. Host an Event According to Bizzabo, 86% of senior management (Senior Managers, Executives, and Board Members) believe that in-person events are critical to the success of their company. The majority of B2B marketers (97%) believe in-person events have a significant impact on achieving business goals. According to Marketing Charts, 68% of B2B marketers agree that in-person events aid in lead generation for manufacturers, while case studies help with lead conversion and acceleration. Improve manufacturing lead generation through events that can occur both online and offline. Organize any kind of event to attract your target market while collecting contact information. Use live events to interact with consumers in real-time, answering questions, addressing objections, learning about your audience, and guiding prospects through the sales funnel. Consider webinars, workshops, seminars, meetups, and conferences. Create a Value-Packed Newsletter "Content is the fuel for your lead generation efforts." – Dayna Rothman According to the Content Marketing Institute, 31% of B2B marketers believe email newsletters are the most effective way to nurture leads. 81% of B2B marketers report that email newsletters are their most frequently used form of content marketing. Create a must-read newsletter that invites interested prospects to engage and remain connected with your company. This enables you to stay top-of-mind with consumers and promote your products and services to move prospects along the sales funnel. The newsletter can have new blog entries, product or service updates, special deals, upcoming events, and recommended reading from other thought leaders. Incorporate SEO into Your Marketing Plan According to Intergrowth, 61% of B2B marketers say SEO and organic traffic generate more leads than any other type of marketing. Search engine leads convert at a rate of 14.6%, while outbound leads (cold calling, direct mail, etc.) convert at a rate of 1.7%. Manufacturers are no exception when it comes to the importance of search engine optimization (SEO). As a result, you may generate many leads with the correct marketing approach and a profound grasp of SEO for manufacturers. Final Words When we consider the statistics explained earlier in this article, we can see the benefits of all of the techniques mentioned and how they can help you increase your lead generation and, as a result, your overall business ROI. Thus, we can refer to the above-mentioned lead generation techniques as sales-driven strategies that will assist you at every lead generation and conversion stage. Improved lead generation for manufacturers enables businesses to reach a vast customer base and generate more high-quality leads. FAQ What is a high-quality lead in manufacturing? Leads of high quality have an increased propensity to convert into paying consumers. The more qualified your leads are, the more likely they will buy your product or service. What are the lead generation challenges? Making accurate data, shaping conversations, and converting qualified leads into sales are some of the significant challenges in manufacturing lead generation.

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Building a Smart Factory is Possible Using Machine Learning

Article | December 7, 2021

Machine learning in manufacturing is becoming more widespread, with businesses like GE, Siemens, Intel, Bosch, NVIDIA, and Microsoft all investing heavily in machine learning-based ways to enhance manufacturing. Machine learning is predicted to expand from $1 billion in 2016 to USD 9 billion by 2022at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 44% throughout the forecast period, according to Markets & Markets. The technology is being utilized to cut labor costs, achieve better transition times, and increase manufacturing speed. “I advocate business leaders get to know more about what AI can do and then leverage AI in proofs of concept.” – Michael Walton, Director and Industry Executive, Microsoft speaking with Media 7 Machine learning can help enhance manufacturing processes at the industrial level. This can be achieved by assessing current manufacturing models and identifying flaws and pain factors. Businesses can rapidly address any difficulties to keep the manufacturing pipeline running smoothly. Let us explore how machine learning is transforming manufacturing operations. How Machine Learning Is Transforming Manufacturing Operations “The greatest benefit of machine learning may ultimately be not what the machines learn but what we learn by teaching them.” - Pedro Domingos Machine learning in manufacturing is revolutionizing manufacturing operations and making them more advanced and result-oriented, so let's have a look at how this is unfolding. Allows for Predictive Maintenance Machine learning provides predictive maintenance by forecasting equipment breakdowns and eliminating wasteful downtime. Manufacturers spend far too much time correcting problems instead of planning upkeep. In addition to enhancing asset dependability and product quality, machine learning systems can forecast equipment breakdown with 92% accuracy. Machine learning and predictive analytics increased overall equipment efficiency from 65% to 85%. Increases Product Inspection and Quality Control Machine learning is also utilized for product inspection. Automated inspection and supervision using ML-based computer vision algorithms can discriminate between excellent and bad products. These algorithms simply need excellent samples to train; therefore a fault library is not required. However, an algorithm that compares samples to the most common errors can be built. Machine learning reduces visual quality control costs in manufacturing. Forbe's says AI-powered quality testing can boost detection rates by up to 80%. Logistics-related Tasks Are Automated To run a production line, industrial companies need considerable logistics skills. The use of machine learning-based solutions can improve logistics efficiency and save expenses. Manual, time-consuming operations like logistics and production-related documentation cost the average US business $171,340 annually. It saves thousands of manual working hours every year to automate these everyday procedures. Using Deep Mind AI, Google was able to lower its data center cooling bill by 40%. Creates More Business Opportunities Machine learning is frequently used in the production process. Substantial data analysis is required to create new items or improve existing products. Collection and analysis of huge amounts of product data can help find hidden defects and new business opportunities. This can help improve existing product designs and provide new revenue streams for the company. With machine learning, companies can reduce product development risks by making smarter decisions with better insights. Protects Company’s Digital Assets On-premise and cloud-based machine learning systems require networks, data, and technological platforms to function. Machine learning can help secure these systems and data by restricting access to vital digital platforms and information. Humans’ access sensitive data, choose applications, and connect to it using machine learning. This can help secure digital assets by immediately recognizing irregularities and taking appropriate action. Harley Davidson's Sales Climbed by 40% Using Albert – The ML & AI-Powered Robot Today, traditional marketing is harder to break through. It's easy to see why Albert (an AI-powered robot) would be a good fit for Harley Davidson NYC. Thanks to machine learning and artificial intelligence, robots are producing news stories, working in hotels, controlling traffic, and even running McDonald's. Albert works well with social media and email marketing. It analyzed which customers are more likely to convert and modifies the personal creative copies on its own for the next process. Harley-Davidson is the only company to employ Albert in its business. The company evaluated customer data to find prior consumers who made purchases and spent more time browsing the website than normal. Albert used this data to categorize customers and scale up test campaigns. Using Albert, Harley-Davidson's sales climbed by 40% and leads increased 2,930%, with half coming from high-converting ‘lookalikes' detected by AI and machine learning. Final Words The groundbreaking benefits of machine learning are the pillars of machine learning applications in manufacturing. Machine learning in manufacturing helps enhance productivity without compromising quality. According to Forbes, Amazon has automated warehouse logistics picking and packing using a machine learning system. With Kiva's help, Amazon's typical ‘click to ship' time dropped from 60-75 minutes to 15 minutes. So, industry leaders are seeing fantastic outcomes, and machine learning in manufacturing is the future. FAQ How is machine learning used in manufacturing? Machine learning is used in manufacturing to improve product quality and uncover new efficiencies. It unquestionably aids in the identification and removal of bottlenecks in the manufacturing process. Which two forms of machine learning are there? Machine learning is divided into two forms: supervised and unsupervised. In supervised machine learning, a machine learning algorithm is trained using data that has been labeled. Unsupervised ML has the advantage of working with unlabeled data. What is a machine learning model? A machine learning model is a file that can recognize patterns. In order to learn from a set of data, you must first train a model using an algorithm. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How is machine learning used in manufacturing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Machine learning is used in manufacturing to improve product quality and uncover new efficiencies. It unquestionably aids in the identification and removal of bottlenecks in the manufacturing process." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "Which two forms of machine learning are there?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Machine learning is divided into two forms: supervised and unsupervised. In supervised machine learning, a machine learning algorithm is trained using data that has been labeled. Unsupervised ML has the advantage of working with unlabeled data." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is a machine learning model?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "A machine learning model is a file that can recognize patterns. In order to learn from a set of data, you must first train a model using an algorithm." } }] }

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Business Models for Sustainable Manufacturing

Article | December 23, 2021

Sustainable business strategiesare bringing significant financial and environmental benefits to manufacturers. Sustainable manufacturingcreates goods while minimizing environmental consequences and preserving energy and natural resources. In addition, sustainable production improves the safety of workers, the community, and the products they produce. Allied Market Research projects that the worldwide renewable energy market will reach $1,977.6 billion by 2030, increasing at an 8.4% CAGR. As a result, we can conclude that many businesses are transitioning from traditional manufacturing to sustainable manufacturing. It’s a good time to be a part of the renewable energy industry. New technologies are coming to market every day, and we work in an industry that is trying to solve an enormous challenge. – Susan Stone, Chief Executive Officer at Ubiquitous Energy, Inc., in conversationwith Media 7 Though many organizations are pioneering the sustainable manufacturing approach, we have selected five of the most well-known companies making serious attempts to be sustainable manufacturing companiesby all means. In addition to the list of sustainable manufacturing businesses, this article will discuss the advantages of sustainabilityand how organizations may become carbon neutral. So let's get started. Top 5 Companies with a Sustainable Business Model The following are five manufacturing businessesthat are investing in sustainable manufacturingmethodsacross their production processes to become more responsive to our mother earth. Philips Electronics The company is reducing its environmental effect by engaging with suppliers, taking climate action, and driving the shift to a circular economy. Climate change is a key concern for Philips. So they are rethinking their business strategies and decoupling economic development from environmental and social impacts. They met their aim of becoming 100% carbon-neutral in their operations and procuring 100% of their power from renewable sources by 2020. They intend to obtain over 75% of their total energy usage from renewable sources by 2025 and to reduce CO2 emissions across their whole value chain to meet the 1.5°C global warming state. Schott Sustainability is profoundly embedded in SCHOTT's DNA. It derives from their distinctive business concept, which dates back to 1896. Their sustainability plan includes responsible governance, workers, society, environment, and climate. “Regarding climate change, it is high time to act. Everyone must take responsibility – politicians, companies and society. We are ready to play our part. We want to become climate neutral by 2030.” - Dr. Jens Schulte, Member of the Board of Management with responsibility for the “Zero Carbon” strategy program Long-term thought and responsible behavior are guiding principles of SCHOTT, which is why they care about the environment and climate. They are entering a new era of sustainable management with their “Zero Carbon” strategic program. Long term, they seek to eliminate fossil fuels as soon as technologyallows it. They are focused on the most energy-intensive stage of glass melting to create new solutions. IKEA IKEA's low-cost furniture utilizes a lot of wood. But because the company employs sustainable forestry practices, your new minimalist nightstand didn't cost the globe a rainforest. The business is also investing heavily in solar and wind energy. This year, the corporation intends to increase its already significant expenditures in renewable energy, to reach 100% clean energy by 2020. It also leads in offering cleaner, greener products. Nike In addition to encouraging people to walk, this footwear manufacturer uses recycled aluminum frames in its headquarters in the Netherlands, and underground energy storage to reduce its carbon footprint. Moreover, it has implemented stringent emission regulations at all of its manufacturingfacilities and has cut its overall carbon footprint by around 80 % since the late 1990s. The company also sells the most environmentally-friendly soccer sneakers on the market. Johnson & Johnson According to the company, Johnson & Johnson has just begun transitioning a significant portion of its energy reliance to solar power in an effort to become the world's most socially responsible organization. Currently, it is the second-largest user of solar energy in the United States, with more than half of its power coming from environmentally friendly sources. Rewards of Adopting Sustainable Manufacturing Practices Many businesses are seeking sustainabilityfor many reasons, including: Reducesoperating expenses and waste Respondsto new consumers and get a competitive edge Buildspublic trust and protect brand and reputation Createslong-term business viability Recognizesand address regulatory constraints What Can We Do to Make Sustainable Manufacturing a Reality? Every business must support green energy projects. Here are some fundamental actions that every business should take to transform itself into a sustainable manufacturing organization. Maximize the Efficacy of Fossil Fuels In today's society, energy conservation is a win-win situation. Approximately half of the world's known oil reserves have been exhausted, which means we are near to the point of diminishing returns in terms of supply. As far as we know, there hasn't been a shortage of supplies. Shutting down unwanted equipment might help you save money immediately. Replace a single-speed motor with a variable speed or servo drive. Use a hydraulic pump with variable speed. Wind, solar, and hydropower can also be used to conserve energy. Reduce or Eliminate Waste Don't overindulge; merely take in what you need to get the task done. At this point, we may all agree that it's easy, but in the past, our primary focus was on reducing productioncosts or time to market. Whether we were wasting resources was unknown or irrelevant to anyone. Metal, paper, and packaging are all examples of industries where this is true. The potential for waste reduction may justify the purchase of highly accurate production equipment. Recycle As a byproduct of manufacturing, metals may be easily recycled and used for new products. In addition, recycling metal saves money and energy since it uses less energy in the manufacturing process, allowing for a 60 % or more reduction in the energy needed to make new products. Final Words Sustainable manufacturing practicesare making manufacturing industries more socially responsible and carbon neutral. This new manufacturing method is necessary for today's period because we must consider future generations while improving today's. Natural resources must be conserved before depleting, and we have nothing left to offer future generations. Responsible organizations have already used this sustainable approachin their manufacturing processes, and we anticipate that every company should consider this method to be more sustainableand environmentally responsible. FAQ What is the difference between green and sustainable manufacturing? The main difference between green and sustainable is that green addresses a single aspect i.e., environmental health, but sustainability addresses the entire system, including economic, social, and environmental aspects. Which business is more environmentally friendly? According to Corporate Knights, Alphabet, Tesla, and AstraZeneca were among the world's most sustainable companies in the Global 100 Index for 2021. What are the four sustainability factors? The word sustainability refers to programs, activities, and actions to preserve a resource. But it relates to four unique key areas. Human, social, economic, and environmental are the four pillars or factors of sustainability.

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What are the Risks that Manufacturing Face in the Current Times?

Article | December 30, 2021

Risk management in manufacturing has always been a top priority for manufacturers to avoid any unfortunate incidents. As a result, it is possible to create a more secure work environment for employees by conducting risk assessments and implementing remedies. “If you don’t invest in risk management, it doesn’t matter what business you’re in, it’s a risky business.” – Gary Cohn, an American Business Leader. As of 2019, the worldwide risk management market was valued at $7.39 billion, and it is expected to rise at a CAGR of 18.7% from 2020 to 2027, according to allied market research. Why is Risk Assessment Critical in Manufacturing? The manufacturing industry must have a credible risk assessment and management plan to defend itself from any breaches. Risk assessment helps firms understand the dangers they face and their implications if their systems are compromised. Hence, risk assessment is very critical in the manufacturing industry. Five Risk Assessment Principles Identify hazards/risks - Employers must examine their workers' health and safety risks. Therefore, an organization must regularly inspect its employee’s physical, mental, chemical, and biological threats. Identify who may be hurt and in what way – Identifying the personnel both full-time and part-time at-risk. Employers must also examine threats to agency and contract personnel, visitors, clients, and other visitors. Assess the risks and act accordingly - Employers must assess the likelihood of each danger causing injury. This will evaluate and lower the chance at the working space. Even with all safeguards, there is always some danger. Therefore, employers must assess if danger is still high, medium, or low risk. Get the Risks Documented - Employers with five or more employees must record the critical findings of the risk assessment in writing. In addition, register any risks identified in the risk assessment and actions to minimize or eliminate risk. This document confirms the evaluation and is used to examine working practices afterward. The risk assessment is a draft. It should be readable. It shouldn't be hidden away. The risk assessment must account for changes in working techniques, new machinery, or higher work objectives. 5 Manufacturing Risks to Consider in 2022 Accidents at Work Even if official safety policies and programs are designed, followed, and enhanced, manufacturers may endure workplace accidents and injuries. Risk assessment for workplace accidents assists in mitigating the negative impact on both employees and the organization. Environmental Mishaps Manufacturers have distinct issues regarding fuel handling and hazardous waste disposal in facilities. Sudden leaks or spills may be extremely costly to clean up and result in fines from state and federal agencies. Risk assessments for such plant accidents assist businesses in mitigating financial losses. Equipment Breakdowns Essential machinery throughout the production process might fail at any time, incurring significant repair or replacement costs. Therefore, it's critical to recognize that business property insurance may not cover mechanical issues. Risk assessment and prepayment solutions protect against equipment failures without interfering with typical company operations. Supply Chain Disruption Dependence on your supply chain may result in unintended consequences that are beyond your control. For example, if you experience downtime on the manufacturing line due to a supplier's failure to supply materials or parts, you risk losing revenue and profitability. If a disturbance to your supply chain poses a hazard, risk management can assist you in managing it more effectively by quickly identifying the risk and providing a suitable response. Operation Temporarily Suspended Depending on the severity of the weather event, a factory might be severely damaged or perhaps utterly wrecked. While major repairs or rebuilding are being undertaken, recouping lost income might be vital to the business's future profitability. Risk assessment in this area enables your organization to budget for overhead expenditures such as rent, payroll, and tax responsibilities during the period of suspension of operations. Final Words Risk management is critical in manufacturing because it enables manufacturers to comprehend and anticipate scenarios and create a well-planned response that avoids unnecessary overhead costs or delays in delivering the production cycle's final result. Manufacturing risks are undoubtedly not limited to the risks listed above and may vary according to the nature of the business and regional environmental conditions. Therefore, create a well-defined strategy to overcome threats in your business and be productive at all times. FAQ How are manufacturing business risks classified? In most cases, the business risk may be categorized into four types: strategic risk, regulatory compliance risks, operational compliance risks, and reputational risks. Why should a manufacturer conduct a risk assessment? Every manufacturing employment has risks for injury or illness. But risk evaluations can significantly minimize workplace injuries and illnesses. In addition, they assist companies in discovering strategies to reduce health and safety risks and enhance knowledge about dangers.

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Spotlight

Neal Electric Corp.

For just over a quarter of a century, Neal Electric has been providing proficient, reliable electrical services in Southern California. In the San Diego area alone, we have been a key partner in the modernization and maintenance of numerous commercial and industry infrastructures. As technologies and customer requirements have changed, our areas of expertise have expanded and diversified to anticipate future needs.

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