Manufacturers evaluate their production networks in light of dramatic changes in costs like labor and energy must adopt advanced manufacturing technologies.
FREMONT, CA: For the past few years, the scramble for competitive advantage in manufacturing has largely revolved around finding new and abundant sources of low-cost labor. But with wages increasing rapidly in China and other emerging markets, manufacturers worldwide are under heightened pressure to gain an advantage in an old-fashioned way—by enhancing their productivity. A combination of forces like falling prices and rising performance of allowing hardware and software, the digitization of industry, increasing connectivity, and increased pressure on manufacturers to be more flexible and eco-friendly are accelerating the adoption of the next generation of advanced manufacturing technologies. Shortly, this technology may transform manufacturing as a whole.
Advanced manufacturing combines technological processes into manufacturing to help companies in their initiatives to produce products more efficiently. One of the fundamental objectives of manufacturing is to create products in the least amount of time while also reducing waste. Advanced manufacturing supports companies achieve this objective. Advanced manufacturing differs from conventional manufacturing in many ways. Conventional manufacturing refers to the process of changing raw materials into a ready-to-sell product through the use of manual or mechanized transformational techniques. The end objective of conventional manufacturing is to add value to achieve the goal. Advanced manufacturing typically involves manufacturing processes in specific industries like aerospace, medical, pharmaceutical, and many others while using advanced techniques and tools.
Advanced-manufacturing technologies can accelerate productivity in several ways. They significantly increase flexibility by making it seamless for manufacturers in some industries to provide customers the choice to have it their way. Manufacturers can also make products in several batches for specific customers; adjust production lines in response to development changes, and even speed time to market by creating prototypes rapidly. Advanced-manufacturing technologies can scale innovation, too, by enabling manufacturers to create new products that can’t be made cost-effectively with traditional processes.
Advanced-manufacturing technologies could help address a number of these requirements. New processes accelerate productivity and responsiveness to the industry by making it possible for manufacturers to rapidly and seamlessly modify designs and reconfigure production lines according to customer needs.