The American Small Manufacturers Coalition (ASMC), in conjunction with Manufacturing Day, released a summary of its results from the 2013 Next Generation Manufacturing (NGM) Study. The NGM Study measures manufacturers’ readiness, support systems and resources, and performances in six key strategic areas necessary for world-class manufacturing and future success.
The Manufacturing Performance Institute (MPI), part of The MPI Group, conducted this research based on recent survey responses of manufacturing executives. The current data shows that manufacturing organizations that achieve world-class status in at least two of the NGM strategies and maintain industry-average levels in the other four areas are in the best position for long-term survival.
However, the 2013 data finds that most of these manufacturers successful as they are today aren’t investing in the strategies that will carry their firms into tomorrow.
“The study data identifies an enormous execution gap the difference between the numbers of firms that recognize the importance of a particular NGM strategy, and the number that comes close to or that achieved world-class status in that strategy,” said John Brandt, Founder & CEO of MPI.
In particular, the study found:
• 90% of manufacturers believe superior process improvement is important, whereas only 44% of those manufactures are near or currently at world-class status in process improvements.
• While human capital management is an issue, NGM data suggests few manufacturers are taking initiative to address talent shortage. 69% of manufacturing executives have the leadership and talent to drive world-class customer-focused innovation, but only 37% have talent development programs to support world-class customer-focused innovation.
• Most manufacturers have the tools, technologies and business equipment they need today, but those tools won’t meet the needs of the future. Only 11% of manufacturers describe their tools and business equipment as “state-of-the-art” and capable of providing long term support.
• 33% of manufacturing executives anticipate a planned leadership succession in the next five years, and another 28% of executives indicate a succession may occur.
• Similar to 2011, manufacturers continue to seek external support from outside organizations in dealing with a range of activities from compliance issues, to strategic planning, to supply chain development. Of those manufacturers that have used outside resources they report a positive impact.
“Next Generation Manufacturing teaches us that small and medium sized manufacturers must continue to transform in order to remain competitive,” according to Carrie Hines, ASMC President & CEO. “In order develop world-class manufacturers; it is imperative that nationwide organizations like the Manufacturing Extension Partnership continue to provide customized training and consultation services in these strategic areas.”
The study, conducted in 2009 and 2011, surveyed U.S. manufacturers nationwide.