Microfinancing in Uganda Works with Lean Manufacturing Precision

Having recently returned from Uganda, had the pleasure of being introduced by Bernard  Munyanziza of Nziza Hospitality to Gilbert Atuhire. He is the Managing Director at Value Addition Microfinance Ltd. which provides micro loans to producers and manufacturers.

Atuhire is an attorney by training, however his ability to articulate the core values of Lean Six Sigma and continuous process improvement were abundantly clear. The Kampala, Uganda offices are located on Parliamentary Avenue and Dewinton Rise. This central location allows direct access to industrial projects.


For decades microfinancing has been a promising method for SME companies to grow and advance market share. Characteristically what has been missing is business due diligence to attract financing. This is particularly true in Uganda. The nation is engaging in an active campaign to ensure global understanding of the country's progress and suitability for foreign investment.

TR Cutler: Gilbert how does Value Addition Microfinance manage micro-loans differently to reassure and protect investors in the manufacturing, construction, and industrial sectors?

Atuhire: Our process is about determining the efficacy of the loan. Before a funding issue arises, we perform a unique assessment process to ensure that the constraint being solved is in fact the bottleneck for the manufacturer’s actual constraint. Throwing money at something without this assessment is wasteful and fails to produce the intended profit result. Increasing production does not always translate to increased profits.


TR Cutler: Share more about your assessment process.

Atuhire: The assessment is like a kaizen event. A kaizen event is a multi-day workshop with the specific goal of identifying the areas primed for improvement. This event is led by a team leader and includes training, data collection, brainstorming, and fiscal rationale for funding. Only with these data are we able to confidently ensure the funding plan for microfinancing makes sense.
We come into an industrial facility, manufacturing, or processing plant. We listen to what the company management, operations managers, quality assurance/quality control personnel report. We capture independent observations performing a Gemba Walk in the plant. Gemba Walks denote observing the actual process, understanding the work, and asking questions. It is also a fundamental part of Lean Manufacturing.

TR Cutler: What is the next step after the kaizen event?

Atuhire: Discovering operational situations ensures that microfinancing will have the greatest impact on productivity, throughput, and operational efficiency. As an example, a grain and packaging company thought they needed heavy equipment machinery to increase production. In fact, the company was experiencing a 30% loss in the fill rate. That loss would accumulate to nearly a million dollars a year. That hemorrhaging had to be stopped immediately.
Additionally, the company used two different bagging sizes and every change-over from a small bag to a larger bag was lost productivity, which equaled approximately 14 hours a week in lost capacity. Changing the schedule to Monday, Wednesday, Friday packing large bags, and Tuesday and Thursday for small bags, erased the change-over time wasted. That single discovery was perhaps more important that the microfinancing.  

TR Cutler:  Is the assessment as important as the funding?

Atuhire:  Yes. Funding the wrong thing will not make the customer or investor happy. We want to find out if the operational imperatives are appropriate to produce the incremental revenue gains expected. We believe to fill a bathtub with water without first putting in the stopper is reckless and unacceptable. We want to protect our customer AND our investors (many of whom are internationally-based and want assurances that money is wisely allocated). Sometimes a customer will balk at paying for the upfront assessment. We show them in just one week that the lost revenue (the current state) does not undergo an accurate Value Stream Mapping (VSM) process. Sure, they want a loan, we want to get them funding for the elements that will most impact processes and profits.

TR Cutler:  Why do you think so many foreign investors are looking to companies like yours to perform these assessments prior to funding microfinancing?

Atuhire:  Many investors, particularly EU and American investors, are very savvy and practice Lean Manufacturing continuous process improvement as the norm. For more than a quarter century these investors have witnessed the implementation of best-practice policies. While far from perfect, it provides an additional layer of risk mitigation for funding. Many Ugandan companies lack the collateralization that traditional banks require. We believe our assessment process is a better metric to determine whether the enterprise is investable.
About The Author
Thomas R. Cutler is the President and CEO of Fort Lauderdale, Florida-based, TR Cutler, Inc., celebrating its 23rd year. Cutler is the founder of the Manufacturing Media Consortium including more than 9000 journalists, editors, and economists writing about trends in manufacturing, industry, material handling, and process improvement. TR Cutler, Inc. recently launched the new African manufacturing division. Cutler authors more than 1000 feature articles annually regarding the manufacturing sector. Over 5000 industry leaders follow Cutler on Twitter daily at @ThomasRCutler. Contact Cutler at trcutler@trcutlerinc.com.

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i3 product lines support the needs of the defense & aerospace, industrial, telecommunications, high performance computing, semiconductor, alternative energy, and medical markets where highly reliable products built in robust manufacturing operations are critical to success.

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TR Cutler, Inc. was founded by Thomas R. Cutler 22 years ago. Cutler maintains extraordinary relationships with clients, journalists, editors, trendsetters, and key business leaders worldwide and has become a key resource for those writing about the manufacturing sector. Cutler founded the Manufacturing Media Consortium; this extraordinary group of more than 8000 journalists, editors, economists, and other industrial leaders worldwide writes about trends, data, case studies, profiles, in the manufacturing, industrial, and distribution sectors. Cutler works with thousands of media outlets to expand manufacturing media coverage.

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Digital Manufacturing Marketing Plan - Five Checklists

Article | September 22, 2021

Marketing for manufacturing companies hasn't always been easy. Because of the rising volatility in the economy, trade shows and face-to-face sales meetings have changed their manufacturing purchasing patterns. On the other hand, buyers are seeking for more convincing market reasons to buy your product. This means your manufacturing marketing strategy needs to evolve to answer each of these questions from the buyer angle in order to convince them in choosing your products over other competitor products. Manufacturers must do more than simply focus on product awareness to attract new buyers. Instead, they must concentrate on the content and intent of promotional activities that will reach target buyers through manufacturing advertising. The promotional message has always been the critical factor to be delivered at the right time and place. To hit the rock at the right spot, you must first understand the buyer's expectations in the manufacturing industry. So, let's get started. Buyers' Expectations from the Manufacturer Faster production cycles, higher-quality components and products, and affordable pricing are all expectations among manufacturing buyers. Therefore, marketing professionals in the manufacturing domain must consider these factors while developing a digital marketing strategy to outwit other competitors in the industry. What Is the Importance of Digital Marketing for Industrial Products? Going digital is the necessity of time. For example, almost 94 percent of B2B buyers conduct online research before making a purchase. Similarly, after using the correct digital marketing techniques for their industrial products, 82 percent of manufacturing enterprises increased their yearly sales within a year. This one-on-one discussion with one of the manufacturing industry's top leaders will give you a better understanding of manufacturing marketing's relevance. Marketing is VERY important to any company, although I generally see it being justified by the number of web hits or ‘leads’ that come in. - John Hayes, Director of Sales at BALYO So, small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) must recognize that utilizing digital platforms is the most significant way of marketing for manufacturing companies.Effective digital marketing campaigns demand sound investment and planning. Hence, to stand out in this digital game, SMMs must review their digital marketing strategies to improve website traffic and conviction in their product on multiple digital platforms. To do so, look at the five checklists points at the top of the digital marketing trends for manufacturers. Five Priorities for Your Digital Manufacturing Marketing Plan Leading manufacturers are all getting good ROI for their industry digital marketing strategy. Let’s check out how are they doing it? Recognize the Buyer's Persona In the context of the increasing instability of the industrial ecosystem, manufacturers must better understand their target groups to develop product marketing strategies tailored to their needs. The potential buyer's digital activities also help understand the target buyer's persona through their digital activities on various digital platforms. For example, some customers prefer textual content to learn about a product, while others prefer to watch a video that explains everything in detail. So, as per the target buyer's demand, manufacturers can modify their product marketing content. It will also help you create an effective digital marketing strategy for your manufacturing company. Interact Effectively with Important Constituents To be visible in the eyes of your buyer, you must communicate with them frequently and effectively. In every industry, technology has altered the meaning of buyer communication. So, here are some of the most popular ways that all industry leaders are using to exchange information with their potential buyers. This strategy will also help you establish a positive rapport with potential buyers and stay in touch with them. Start a Newsletter: Prepare some research and conversion phase content, solution-oriented blogs, interviews, or success stories, as applicable for your company's profile. In this strategy, you must always be consistent and distinct. Create an Email Campaign: Use emails to build a more personal connection with your potential buyers. Create a buyer persona based on the interests of your target audience and segment them properly when crafting your emails. This practice will help your recipients feel recognized and involved. Use Social Media Networks to Your Advantage: Each of your buyer personas uses social media as a primary source of information. Use this platform to your advantage by developing specific techniques for staying top-of-mind among your target audience. Make the Website Content Appealing to Potential Buyers Manufacturing digital marketing content serves as a thread to draw your target buyers to your website. When the target buyer visits your website, the website content will play a critical role. As a result, every manufacturing company must have the concise, engaging, and appealing website content. Make sure that your website contains everything you require to connect with your target buyer persona. So, how do you know if your website's content is on track? Check out the list below for some key points that should be available on your website to make visitors feel valuable about your company. Key-informative content: This type of content should assist buyers in expanding their existing knowledge of your company, product, or services. It must include your brand’s story, services, product catalogs and brochures, FAQs, and solution-focused blogs. Trust-building content: This type of content encourages anxious buyers to trust your product or service, which may be entirely new for them. It includes previous buyer product reviews, client references, testimonials, buyer success stories, expert opinions, and business awards if any. User-friendly content: This is the most Crucial aspect of your website's content. As covered in the buyer persona section, buyers have diverse interests in consuming information. Some prefer to read text, some prefer to watch videos, and others prefer to consume information through CAD drawings, diagrams, or infographics. As a result, ensure that your website contains various forms of content so that each visitor is comfortable consuming what you are serving them about your product. SEO-optimized content: Ensure that your website contains your target buyers' keywords when searching for products. Creating SEO-friendly website content allows you to rank higher in Google searches and makes it easier for readers to find you. Use Marketing Automation Platform Because of the growing use of marketing automation tools, even the smallest manufacturers can now benefit from them. They're the easiest and most cost-effective way to gauge the success of your digital marketing efforts. So what benefits have you reaped from using the marketing automation software? Helps you keep track of your prospects' locations Assists you in obtaining the lead score, which tells you who your best leads are and where they originate Keep track of the conversions throughout the buying cycle with this tool As a result, the marketing automation technology helps you evaluate the return on your investment in numerous ways. Do a Competitor Analysis Analyzing your competitor's marketing strategies will help you develop sound business tactics for your next move. Competitor analysis aids you in understanding the market's demands and new prospects that you may have ignored previously. This strategic approach also aids in your understanding of where you stand in the market and what you need to come up with to stay ahead of competitors. Final Words Every buyer's attention isn't only focused on making a purchase. They also want a simple and pleasing purchase experience. Providing a delightful buying experience encourages customers to return to you for future purchases of the same or different products you have introduced. As a result, each of the checklists above plays a vital role in your potential customer's buying process and contributes to organic buyer growth. FAQs What is digital manufacturing? Digital manufacturing is the simultaneous creation of product and manufacturing process descriptions using an integrated computer-based system that involves simulation, 3D visualizations, analytics, and collaborative tools. How can manufacturers market their products? Promote your product by using various content types, including blogs, press releases, infographics, and videos. Consider event sponsorships as a way to reach a particular demographic with your brand's message. Distribute complimentary product samples to potential customers to secure bulk purchases. What is the most effective way to market a manufacturing firm? For your target groups, write and publish richer, solution-oriented content. To make your company more known to the general public, take virtual tours of your facility and create product videos to give people a better understanding of your product and company. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is digital manufacturing?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Digital manufacturing is the simultaneous creation of product and manufacturing process descriptions using an integrated computer-based system that involves simulation, 3D visualizations, analytics, and collaborative tools." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "How can manufacturers market their products?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Promote your product by using various content types, including blogs, press releases, infographics, and videos. Consider event sponsorships as a way to reach a particular demographic with your brand's message. Distribute complimentary product samples to potential customers to secure bulk purchases." } },{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is the most effective way to market a manufacturing firm?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "For your target groups, write and publish richer, solution-oriented content. To make your company more known to the general public, take virtual tours of your facility and create product videos to give people a better understanding of your product and company." } }] }

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It's Time to Redesign Your Business with Manufacturing Analytics

Article | December 21, 2021

Consumer demand has shifted dramatically in recent years, and manufacturers are trying to adapt to this shift. To maintain high product quality, minimize costs, and optimize supply chains, manufacturing analyticshas become essential for manufacturers. Manufacturing analyticsis the process of gathering and analyzing data from various systems, equipment, and IoT devices in real-time to get essential insights. As technology takes over and enhances many of the processes we used to handle with manual labor, we are freed up to use our minds creatively, which leads to bigger and better leaps in innovation and productivity. – Matt Mong Manufacturing analyticscan assist in maintaining production quality, boost performance with high-profit returns, decrease costs, and optimize supply networks. This article will outline manufacturing analyticsand present a list of possible application cases. It will also highlight the benefits of manufacturing analyticsfor any shop floor or factory. Manufacturing analytics: An Overview With manufacturing analytics, we can streamline and speed up the entire process. Data interchange and automation helps in speeding up the production process. Manufacturing analyticsuses predictive manufacturing, big data, Industrial IoT, network virtualization, and machine learningto produce better scalable production solutions. Manufacturing analyticscollects and analyses data from many sources via sensors embedded in machinery to identify areas for improvement. Data is collected and presented in an easy-to-understand structure to illustrate where difficulties emerge throughout the process. In short, manufacturing analyticscollects and analyses large volumes of data to reveal insights that might improve performance. Users can also obtain automated business reports to reply in real-time. Why Manufacturing analytics is Vital for Leading Businesses There are numerous benefits of manufacturing analyticsthat drive any company’s production and overall manufacturing business growth. The benefits of manufacturing analyticsfall into three distinct categories as below. It reduces the overall cost: Analytics may save a significant amount of money if used more efficiently. Labor costs are also reduced due to automation and semi-autonomous machinery. Similarly, preventive and prescriptive maintenance programs may save money while enhancing productivity. It boosts profits for businesses: Manufacturers can respond swiftly to changes in demand using real-time insights in production, inventory management, and demand and supply forecasting. For example, assume the data indicates that they are approaching their maximum capacity. In such instances, they can increase over time, increase capacity, modify procedures, or tweak other production areas to adapt and maintain delivery times. Other unforeseen benefits: There are several advantages to the increased capabilities enabled by manufacturing analytics. These benefits include lower energy use, safer environmental practices, fewer compliance failures, and more customer satisfaction. Five Real-world Applications of Manufacturing Analytics Predictive Maintenance A machine's analytics uses aggregate data from real-time detectors to anticipate when it needs to be replaced or functioning irregularly. This process helps predict machine failure or equipment defects. Analytics can assist in determining a plant's capacity and how many products are produced by the unit in every production cycle, which is helpful in capacity planning. In addition, analytics may help determine the ideal number of units to create over time by considering capacity, sales predictions, and parallel schedules. Predictive analytics solutions can automate maintenance requests and readings that shortens the procedure and reduce maintenance expenses. Product Development Product development is an expensive process in manufacturing. As a result, businesses must invest in R&D to develop new product lines, improve existing models, and generate new value-added services. Earlier, this approach was in place by repeated modeling to get the finest outcome. This approach can now be modeled to a large extent, with the help of data science and technologically superior analytics. Real-world circumstances can be replicated electronically using "digital twins" and other modeling approaches to anticipate performance and decrease R&D expenses. Demand Forecasting Many factors that might help in the plan significant capital expenditures or brief breakdowns can be explained using historical data and a few high-impact variable strategies. For example, consider the seasonality of products like ice cream. As a result, historical market data and a few high-impact factors can help explain numerous variables and plan major capital expenditures or short-term shutdowns. In addition to demand forecasting, predictive analytics incorporates advanced statistical techniques. With predictive analytics, a wide range of parameters, including customer buying behavior, raw material availability, and trade war implications, may be taken into consideration. Warranty Analysis Warranty support may be a load for many manufacturers. Warranties are frequently based on a "one-size-fits-all" approach that is broader. This approach introduces uncertainty and unanticipated complications into the equation. Products may be modified or updated to decrease failure and hence expense by using data science and obtaining information from active warranties in the field. It can also lead to better-informed iterations for new product lines to minimize field complaints. Managing Supply Chain Risks Data may be recorded from commodities in transit and sent straight from vendor equipment to the software platform, helping to enable end-to-end visibility in the supply chain. Manufacturing analyticsallows organizations to manage their supply chains like a "control tower," directing resources to speed up or slow down. They may also order backup supplies and activate secondary suppliers when demand changes. Final Words Businesses should adapt to changing times. Using analytics in manufacturinghas altered the business industry and spared it from possible hazards while boosting production lines. Industry 4.0's route has been carved. Manufacturing analyticsis the key to true Industry 4.0, and without it, the data produced by clever IoT devices is meaningless. The future is data-driven, and success will go to those who are ready to adopt it. The faster adoption, the sooner firms go ahead of the competition. FAQ How can data analytics help manufacturers? Data analytics tools can help manufacturers analyze machine conditions and efficiency in real-time. It enables manufacturers to do predictive maintenance, something they were previously unable to accomplish. Why is data so crucial in manufacturing? Data helps enhance manufacturing quality control. Manufacturers can better understand their company's performance and make changes by collecting data. Data-driven manufacturing helps management to track production and labor time, improve maintenance and quality, and reduce business and safety concerns. What is Predictive Manufacturing? Predictive manufacturing uses descriptive analytics and data visualization to offer a real-time perspective of asset health and dependability performance. In addition, it helps factories spot quality issues and takes remedial action quicker by eliminating the waste and the cost associated with it.

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How Collaborative Robots Are Revolutionizing the Manufacturing Industry

Article | December 10, 2021

A new form of robot is entering manufacturing plants all around the globe. Instead of being locked away in their own work cell, collaborative robots work side by side with their human counterparts. Together, they form the manufacturing crew of the future. Collaborative robots, or cobots, are more flexible, easy to use, and safer than industrial robots. Instead of ending up abandoned in a corner, they are proving to be serious expansions of production capacity leading to better ways of creating superior quality products. 1.1 A New Breed of Bot Cobots are a new type of automation product with their own ISO standards for safety and usability. For a robot to qualify as a cobot, it has to be used for tasks of a collaborative nature while sharing all or part of its reach space with human operators. So it is not the product alone that classifies it as a cobot. Industrial robots must be expertly programmed for one specific job along the production line. This requires hard line coding and endless tweaking and testing, which together with other factors make for a sizable upfront investment. Not so with collaborative robots. Cobots may look similar to traditional robots in some ways, but they are much easier to install and program. This foregoes the need to cooperate with a robotic integration service. Their lightweight and friendly form factor lets manufacturers conveniently relocate them on the shopfloor from one project to another. This renders the robotics technology perfect for a data-driven, Industry 4.0 work environment. Cobots can side with traditional machinery and additive manufacturing equipment, aided by artificial intelligence and cloud connectivity while embedded in a networked environment rich with smart sensors and mixed reality interfaces. 1.2 A Unique Blend of Benefits Because it is fairly straightforward to reprogram a cobot to various tasks, they are perfect for high-mix, low-volume work to meet the rising demand for ultra-customized products. They can also do multiple tasks in unison, such as alternatingly loading a machine and finishing parts from the previous cycle. Here are some other advantages in addition to flexibility: • Low investment. Cobots typically cost a fraction of the price of an industrial robot, but they offer much lower payload and reach. ROI is typically one to two years. • Safety. With rounded surfaces, force-limited joints, and advanced vision systems, cobots are exceptionally safe. This reduces the risk of injury due to impact, crushing, and pinching. Driverless transport systems are wheeled mobile robots that immediately halt when their lasers detect the presence of a nearby human being. • Accuracy. Cobots score well on accuracy with 0.1mm precision or well below that. While they do typically sacrifice speed, dual-mode cobots can be converted to fully-fledged tools of mass production that run at full speed in their own safeguarded space. • Easy to program. Many brands offer user-friendly programming interfaces from beginner to expert level. This reduces the need for continuous availability of expensive and scarce expertise while giving current employees an incentive to upskill. And because they can be deployed within hours, cobots can be leased for temporary projects. • Research. Small processing plants, agile start-ups, and schools can invest in cobots to experiment with ways to automate processes before committing to full automation. 1.3 Cobot Activity Repertoire Cobots are perfect candidates for taking over strenuous, dirty, difficult, or dull jobs previously handled by human workers. This relieves their human co-workers from risk of repetitive strain injury, muscle fatigue, and back problems. They can also increase job satisfaction and ultimately a better retirement. The cobot’s program of responsibilities includes: • Production tasks such as lathing, wire EDM, and sheet stamping. • Welding, brazing, and soldering. • Precision mounting of components and fasteners, and applying adhesive in various stages of general assembly. • Part post-finishing such as hole drilling, deburring, edge trimming, deflashing, sanding, and polishing. • Loading and unloading traditional equipment such as CNC and injection molding machines, and operating it using a control panel to drastically reduce cycle times. • Post-inspection such as damage detection, electronic circuit board testing, and checking for circularity or planarity tolerances. • Box-packing, wrapping, and palletizing. • Automated guided vehicles (AGVs) and autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) assist with internal transport and inventory management. 1.4 No-Code Programming While an industrial robot requires the attention of a high-paid robotics engineer, anyone with basic programming savviness can install and maintain a collaborative unit. Brands are releasing more and more kits for quick installation and specific use cases. Instead of being all numbers and line-coding, current user interaction is exceptionally people-focused. At the lowest skill level, lead-through programming lets operators physically guide the cobot’s end-of-arm-tool (EOAT) through the desired motion path, after which it will flawlessly replicate the instructed behaviour. It is also possible to enter desired waypoints as coordinates. At the highest level, it is of course still possible to have full scripting control. An intermediate step is visual programming interfaces. These let users create blocks of functionality that they can string together into more advanced action sequences, while entering the appropriate parameters for each function such as gripping strength, screwing tightness, or pressing force. These UIs come in the form of in-browser or mobile apps. Based on a 3D-CAD model of the machine and its industrial environment, a digital twin of the cobot can simulate and optimize its operations, for example to prevent collisions. It also lets operators remotely monitor and adjust the machine while it’s running. All the while, back-end artificial intelligence can do its analyses to find further efficiency improvements. 3D models of the to-be-manufactured product can be imported for edge extraction of complex surfaces. These will then be converted into the cobot’s desired movement trajectories instead of tedious manual programming. This makes them feasible to implement for highly dexterous tasks like welding curved hydroformed metal parts or sanding and polishing the most intricate of 3D printed geometries. Interfacing directly with the robot is becoming increasingly human-centered as well. Future cobots will respond to voice interaction as well as touch input, eradicating the screens-and-buttons paradigm of current devices. Some brands are giving the cobot a face with emotional expressions, hoping to lower the barrier to adoption. The upcoming generation of cobots can even respond to body language, as well as show its intentions by projecting light to where they are about to reach or move next. 1.5 A Human World Ultimately, the objective of any company is to create value for people. It is not an option to completely remove humans from the shop floor in an attempt to stay at the forefront of innovation. Attempting to leap to full automation and the utopian “lights-out factory” does not work anyway, as automotive giants such as Ford, Chrysler, GM, and Tesla can testify. A significant portion of human employees will indeed need to give up their roles. On the other hand, improved productivity levels open up space to retain personnel and uplift them to more creative, managerial, analytical, social, or overall more enjoyable jobs. For certain tasks, humans still need to be kept inside the manufacturing loop. For example: • Complex assembly routines and handling of flexible components. • Large vehicle subassemblies contain many variable components and require more hand-eye coordination than one cobot can handle. Humans are needed to make sure everything lands in the right position while the cobot provides assistive muscle power. • Fashion, footwear, jewellery, art pieces, and other products where creation borders on artistry rather than mechanical assembly require the aesthetic eye of humans. People are also needed to spot aesthetic deficiencies in custom one-offs in order to correspond with customers before finishing the production batch. • While intelligent automation software can spot bottlenecks in efficiency, humans are required for creative problem solving and context-awareness to make decisions. A spirit of flexibility and innovation is just as important as the accuracy of perfect repetitions. 1.6 Mission: Install a Cobot Cobots have numerous advantages over industrial solutions or people-only workspaces. They enable faster, more precise, and more sophisticated operations while reducing downtime and maintaining employee satisfaction. Low-voltage operation and reduced material waste fits with sustainable innovation and corporate social responsibility programs. Many companies are reporting surges in production capacity and staff generally experience the presence of cobots as favorable. For example, industry leviathans like BMW and Mercedes-Benz are reaching the conclusion that in many parts of the production process implementing a cobot has been the right decision. Connecting all parts of the production line with full automation solutions is a pipedream. It works only when all steps are perfectly attuned, and in reality this never happens and one misstep can be catastrophic. Whether to hire a human, a robot, or a co-robot is a complex and ever-more pressing decision. Statistical process control is paramount for large organizations to make unbiased data-driven decisions. Determine the key performance indicators, then find the most critical bottlenecks and major opportunities for leaps in production efficiency, product quality, or staff unburdening. Talk to employees for their insights and probe their level of skill and enthusiasm needed for working with their new artificial assistants. Digital transformation should be an exciting shift in the organization and its people, so apply new technological advancements only where it makes sense. Despite common beliefs about robotization, the cobot is an entirely separate product category that can be a surprisingly plug-and-play solution for simple tasks, with programming apps becoming increasingly intuitive. A cobot’s flexibility makes it perfect to run early experiments to help companies find its best spot on the factory floor. Its unbelievable precision, consistency, and level of control generally can make a strong first impression on customers. Not only can cobots increase production capacity while reducing idle time and cycle time to accelerate manufacturing across many vertical markets, but they also enrich the work environment resulting in happier and more involved employees. For many companies, a cobot can be the next logical step in their digital transformation.

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Trends to Boost Your Manufacturing Business in 2022

Article | October 27, 2021

Technologies in the manufacturing industry are upscaling daily. Manufacturers are keen to embrace the latest manufacturing trends to improve their manufacturing process, total production rate, and product quality at their factories. Manufacturing technology advances have also boosted production speed while retaining product quality. “As technology takes over and enhances many of the processes we used to handle with manual labor, we are freed up to use our minds creatively, which leads to bigger and better leaps in innovation and productivity.” – Matt Mong, VP Market Innovation and Project Business Evangelist at Adeaca. Apart from manufacturing technology developments, we will look at new manufacturing business trends in this article, which will help you achieve maximum customer engagement and a positive relationship with your target consumer groups. So, let's see some of the top manufacturing business trends that are assisting the industry in improving its business processes. Manufacturing Business Trends: 2022 Manufacturers must adopt a business procedure that focuses on the target consumer group. Also, incorporating social responsibility and technology into company procedures would be beneficial. Here are five ways manufacturing leaders are becoming more communicative and results-oriented in their manufacturing and consumer experience strategies. Deliver a One-of-a-kind Digital Experience Every industry's target demographic is now online. Manufacturers must use digitalization to interact with their target consumer group to be noticed and remembered. Maintain an active presence on all popular digital platforms used by your target demographic. Post your new products, business strategy, or get genuine customer feedback on your brand and products. Engage your target audience and keep them informed of your progress in making their lives easier. “Marketing is VERY important to any company, although I generally see it being justified by the number of web hits or ‘leads’ that come in” – John Hays, Director of Sales at BALYO Allow your clientele to interact with your products digitally. To be a part of the new digital revolution in any industry, create a new digital business model. Initiative for Ecosystem Partnership An ecosystem partnership is a network of enterprises working together to provide a product or service to meet changing market needs. A partner ecosystem can generate customer-ready solutions faster. It also helps firms to co-create value. This value is demonstrated in extraordinary customer and partner experiences. The B2B ecosystem partners work together to bring mutual benefits to their companies. Revenue Generation via Data Monetization Data monetization allows industrial CIOs (Chief Information Officers) to monetize their digital products and services. Rapid digitization in manufacturing generates massive data. CIOs may monetize and distribute data across ecosystems. CIOs can leverage information as a resource to generate new services or business models. This ensures revenue even when external reasons like supply chain issues or human resource shortages interrupt the firm. Using the Equipment as a Service (EaaS) Approach EaaS, or Pay-Per-Use, is defined as: A business model where equipment is rented rather than sold, with remote diagnostics and predictive maintenance solutions offered by the vendor. Using Eaas reduces capital expense, improves data reliability, and lowers operating costs. As a result, producers can undertake all production-related tasks with precision. Bosch RexRoth CytroBox – a Perfect Example of EaaS The global equipment-as-a-service market is estimated to develop at an 11.5 percent CAGR from 2021-2027. (OpenPR) The RexRoth Cytrobox from Bosch is an example of EAAS. This hydraulic power unit converts electrical power into hydraulic fluid pressure and flow to move and force a machine. They are widely utilized in presses and tooling equipment. It can handle up to 33 kW in a small space. Its exceptionally flexible; its unique design allows it to run efficiently and quietly. In addition, modern automation and sensor packages allow easy integration into modern machine designs. Benefits of Bosch RexRoth CytroBox It provides data insights during the long lifecycles Using this hydraulic power unit on a lease can save a lot of money which cost $100.000 It requires heavy maintenance cost as per its type of usage that can be avoided with the EaaS approach Shifting the Emphasis from B2B to B2C Many firms are moving their attention from B2B to B2C to understand their target consumer better. This new strategic approach helps producers identify market needs and gain real-time feedback on their products. This method helps producers increase profit margins while also controlling the product's interaction with the intended audience. Final Words The latest manufacturing trends will take you to the cutting edge of manufacturing. The manufacturing developments in 2022 will boost the total manufacturing market in the coming years, allowing manufacturers to generate more business revenue. FAQs What is the manufacturing industry's future? Industry 4.0 is rapid technological progress in production and is transforming the worldwide manufacturing industry. According to bccresearch's market research, the global manufacturing and process control market is predicted to increase from $86.7 billion in 2020 to $117.7 billion in 2025, a CAGR of 6.3 percent. What is the industry 4.0 technology in the manufacturing industry? IoT, industrial internet of things (IIoT), Cyber-physical systems (CPS), cloud computing, artificial intelligence, big data, machine learning, robotics, virtual reality, augmented reality, and additive manufacturing or 3D printing are some technologies that are used in industry 4.0 factories. What are the current technology trends in the manufacturing industry? AI, robots, 3D printing, and the like are all the latest manufacturing trends in manufacturing technology. Additionally, enterprise resource planning (ERP), cloud computing, and machine vision all play a significant part in advanced manufacturing. { "@context": "https://schema.org", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is the manufacturing industry's future?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Industry 4.0 is rapid technological progress in production and is transforming the worldwide manufacturing industry. 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TR Cutler, Inc. was founded by Thomas R. Cutler 22 years ago. Cutler maintains extraordinary relationships with clients, journalists, editors, trendsetters, and key business leaders worldwide and has become a key resource for those writing about the manufacturing sector. Cutler founded the Manufacturing Media Consortium; this extraordinary group of more than 8000 journalists, editors, economists, and other industrial leaders worldwide writes about trends, data, case studies, profiles, in the manufacturing, industrial, and distribution sectors. Cutler works with thousands of media outlets to expand manufacturing media coverage.

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