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Manufacturing Resilience: Key Considerations for Success

Essential strategies for enhancing manufacturing resilience, reducing waste, and improving product quality. Read part two of our series.

This is part two of a three-part series to help you boost the resilience initiatives across your entire value chain.

Building on the first topic of inbound supplier resilience, let’s move to the next phase in achieving resilience: ensuring high-quality products in your manufacturing operations.

In today's manufacturing industry landscape, product companies are plagued by shortages and disruptions. Only 21% report they have a highly resilient network today, according to a recent Gartner survey.

To thrive in this environment, it is crucial to strengthen manufacturing resilience and build a resilient supply chain ecosystem that can adapt to uncertainties and mitigate vulnerabilities. 

Regardless of size and varying business needs, all product companies could benefit from these key strategies to enhance manufacturing resilience and optimize product quality.

Using Technology to Reduce Waste and Improve Yields

A foundational step toward improving manufacturing resilience has always been to minimize waste in the production process—but it’s become even more critical since the pandemic, not to mention growing concerns about climate change impact.

By implementing digital technologies such as cloud-native PLM, you can identify and eliminate inefficiencies, reduce material waste, and improve sustainability and cost-effectiveness. Modern solutions such as Propel Software provide real-time data visibility that helps teams make informed decisions to optimize their production system. 

With richer data visibility and contextual collaboration in a single platform, enterprise software includes advanced manufacturing technology that prepares businesses for longer-term challenges and market volatility. With a more efficient utilization of resources, you can optimize your production lines, reduce defects, and increase overall yield.

And of course, reducing warranty returns is crucial for maintaining customer satisfaction and preserving your brand reputation. Propel’s modern tech-based quality control is fully integrated with PLM, drastically improving consistent product quality by proactively identifying and addressing potential issues during the manufacturing process. Real-time monitoring, data analytics, and automated inspection systems help in minimizing defects and warranty returns, ultimately building a resilient supply chain.

Here are a few specific areas you can manage more efficiently with modern cloud-based solutions, getting you closer to a digitally integrated, smart manufacturing process:

1. Supplier Reliability:

In the manufacturing industry, supplier reliability is paramount to ensure uninterrupted production and head off vulnerabilities. You can strengthen collaboration with trusted suppliers by using a platform with a built-in supplier portal to enhance visibility and enable effective decision-making. Moreover, having access to historical data allows businesses to constantly reevaluate their suppliers to know how best to diversify their supplier base. 

2. Availability of Materials:

It goes without saying that shortages of raw materials and components are a significant modern-day concern. To build resilience, it is crucial to assess the availability of materials and establish backup plans and alternative providers. 

Consider implementing real-time inventory tracking and automated procurement systems to maintain a reliable supply of materials and minimize production delays. Large-scale component databases such as SiliconExpert are able to show you the risk level of your components—including not only availability but also compliance with local regulations. With modern solutions like Propel, you can view these risk levels directly within your bill of materials on a component level. 

3. Location:

Climate change and geopolitical uncertainties have highlighted the importance of location considerations in manufacturing resilience. Thus, there is a growing need to properly assess these risks and diversify manufacturing facilities and suppliers across more stable geographic locations. 

4. Backup Plans and Collaboration:

Having backup plans and fostering collaboration across your manufacturing ecosystem is vital. By building strong relationships with suppliers, customers, manufacturing partners, and other stakeholders, you can enhance communication, problem-solving, and joint risk mitigation. Digital platforms and collaborative tools with integrated PLM, QMS, and PIM can facilitate real-time information sharing and enable swift decision-making in times of uncertainty.

Digital Transformation for Resilient Manufacturing

None of these key strategies would be possible using the traditional systems built for a slower, more predictable market 20-plus years ago. Digital transformation is the only way forward to keep up with market evolution and build resilience in your manufacturing supply chain. 

Digital transformation goes hand in hand with increased automation. In relation to manufacturing, automation is essential for modern production lines, such as machine learning or robotics, which can be fed back into your enterprise software—a huge step toward becoming more nimble and resilient. 

Implementing a robust system for monitoring supply chain metrics is how today’s product companies are able to track production efficiency and identify potential bottlenecks or risks in real-time. Moreover, establishing an IoT-connected ecosystem enables manufacturers to optimize the end-to-end flow of materials, products, and information.

By prioritizing long-term resilience, manufacturers can navigate challenges, optimize lead times, reduce vulnerabilities, and create a robust and adaptable process that thrives in an ever-changing market

Modern solutions such as Propel specialize in helping hypergrowth companies grow revenue by remaining resilient in the face of disruption—and staying continuously connected to not only their supply chain but their demand chain as well. Stay tuned for part three!

Click here to read part one “Why Supply Chain Resilience Needs to Stay Top of Mind.”

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Post by
Greg Ladd
VP of Sales, Propel

Greg has built and scaled high-performance sales teams focused on continuous improvement and transformative growth. For more than 20 years, he has held leadership positions within a range of companies in the enterprise technology sector with a specific focus on supply chain and enterprise data management. Throughout his career, Greg has a proven track record of building successful sales teams, achieving revenue growth and overall team performance.  He is a dedicated process-oriented sales coach committed to delivering solid results and providing differentiated value to customers while ensuring client retention and loyalty.

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Greg Ladd