The manufacturing industry is changing but people are still the answer.
Manufacturing is changing. With new materials, methods and enterprises opening up at a pace never seen before, staying abreast of new techniques and technologies is itself a full-time job.
- First, there is Big data, and now data sandboxes, providing enormous quantities of user and consumer data that is driving advertising, production demand, and shipping to new extremes.
- Next, the never before seen sharing of proprietary technologies demands more than talented design and engineering; Competitive producers need proven innovators and developers as well.
- Even manufacturing theory is moving in new directions with the Lean production strategies and quality and efficiency controls like Six Sigma combining in newer, faster ways.
- Today manufacturing is even becoming an endeavor pursued from basements and garages with 3D printing technology making its surprisingly affordable debut, not on the factory floor, but in the makers home. and this too is being widely shared.
All these things are happening at an exceptional pace, the rate of change placing increasing strain on manufacturers trying to achieve the state of the art. It is also placing demands on the individual employee, who must constantly engage in learning new strategies and technologies. Workplace competition itself is taking on a new shape in the modern manufacturing world.
Everything is smaller and faster. Growth and change are becoming dangerously unpredictable, new technologies are bringing with them unforeseen applications and sometimes negative consequences, but it all remains the responsibility of the technicians, the engineers, and the managers. As overwhelming as it seems, qualified personnel are still the solution to these new challenges in the manufacturing world.