According to a study published by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), “If U.S. manufacturing were a country by itself, it would be the eighth largest economy in the world.” One of the reasons behind this is globalization. In order to tap into globalization, manufacturers must be willing to embrace some new and helpful technology.
One Link in a Long Chain
In manufacturing, sometimes getting the necessary knowledge to the final recipient is like playing the telephone game we all played as children–by the time the word or phrase gets to the last person, it may rhyme, but there was a lot lost in transition. Cloud computing offers a way to cut out all the misunderstanding and keep the workflow streamlined and right on point.
One notable economist at NIST is Gregory Tassey says we are in an “emerging innovation ecosystem,” and he thinks the key to growth is investing into, “human capital.” Manufacturers continue to relocate to where they can find highly educated workers, but there is a way to tap into global market of educated minds: It’s called cloud-computing.
According to Forbes Magazine, cloud computing is “revolutionizing” the manufacturing industry. The most successful manufacturers right now are those that make themselves “as easy as possible to work with from a supply chain, distribution, and services standpoint.” Cloud computing makes this possible.
Top 10 Ways Cloud Computing Is Being Used In Manufacturing
In Forbes’ study, they listed ten top ways that cloud computing is being used in manufacturing:
- Company-wide intelligence
- Service design
- Collaboration in time-to-market objectives
- Managing and tracking sales
- Reducing logistic costs
- Unifying global locations
Through the use of cloud-based operations, manufacturing companies are not only selling more of their current products, they’re also finding more time and money to invest in new products.
Cutting Costs and Building Business
Productivity tools can be expensive, especially if a new license is required for each user. That cost seems to double in impact when the tool itself is not used frequently. Cloud computing allows manufactures access to a wide range of productivity and business tools, and then only pay for the actual time they use them. Moreover, there is no need to purchase multiple products for multiple locations. The company can access the cloud operation anywhere they have access to the Internet.
Cloud operations also speed up efficiency. That means customers can get what they need (even tailored products), when they need it, with less delay in between. That is often the difference between making and keeping a new customer or losing one to the competition.
One of the most quickly felt (especially financially speaking) benefits of tapping into resources via cloud computing is additional man power, without any added in-house costs. Companies can often find freelance or contract services that allow to get done what needs done, with a guarantee that it will be done right, without worrying about sick-leave or additional benefits being paid out. That means less money being spread over “busy time.”
Getting Your Head in the Clouds
While there are many benefits of cloud computing for the manufacturing industry, it does appear that it is slow to take off. This is a good thing and a bad thing for companies. The problem is that there is a lot of economy-boosting profit that is being lost while companies look on hesitantly. While the good news is that if companies hop on the cloud bandwagon now, they may become heads above other companies that are still waiting to embrace it.
One thing is for sure: Cloud computing is a must-have technology for those working within manufacturing.
Will has a passion for motor car racing and in his spare time loves to rebuild vintage cars. Will also writes for several auto and metal companies such Dynamic Metals, stainless steel & titanium suppliers.