9 Manufacturing Industry Trends To Watch For In 2024

Brahm Meka
May 16, 2024
4 Min Read
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9 Manufacturing Industry Trends To Watch For In 2024

Well, 2021 was another year that could have been a lot easier, right?

Although the manufacturing industry was not among the worst affected, there’s no denying that the Covid-19 pandemic exposed flaws in the internal processes of countless companies within the sector. It also highlighted the fragility of the global supply chains on which many businesses have become so reliant — leaving SMB decision-makers with little choice but to explore new options and “pivot” to overcome the challenges presented to them.

So we see leave 2021 behind us, the question is: what will next year have in store? After all, we’ve had more than enough surprises to last us for a lifetime at this point.

Let’s take a peek into the future to see what manufacturing industry trends might appear when the calendar flips over to 2022. 

The manufacturing trends shaping our industry in 2022

  1. A shift to onshore manufacturing

Business leaders have long debated the advantages of onshore and offshore manufacturing. In most cases, the latter has prevailed — offering companies cost efficiencies and lower manufacturing costs per unit thanks to cheaper labor rates and overheads abroad. 

However, with transportation fees rising and the pandemic demonstrating how quickly global supply chains can be disrupted (and even halted), many businesses are opting to keep their production processes local — or “onshore”. As we approach 2022, it will be interesting to see how far this mass return to onshore production will go.

  1. Direct-to-consumer selling

With the rise of ecommerce solutions, manufacturing businesses are now presented with a real opportunity to sell directly to consumers rather than via a large distributor or wholesaler. This has various benefits — primarily that the manufacturer can save on costs and generate more profit since they do not have to sell their goods at a discounted rate.

Secondly, when businesses interact directly with consumers, they can collect primary data into purchasing habits and behaviors. This allows them to adjust their strategies and refine processes to better meet consumer demands. 

We should expect this trend to continue in 2022, as manufacturers look to reclaim more control over their business processes and drive home more revenue.

  1. 3D printing/additive manufacturing

As a set of technologies, 3D printing and additive manufacturing have profoundly impacted the industry.

Now that prices continue to fall for 3D printing machines — and, all the while, the quality of the manufactured parts improves — it’s almost certain that more companies will adopt these solutions. Why? Because not only do smaller manufacturing runs produce more reliable and efficient components faster, additive manufacturing produces less waste too.

  1. Predictive maintenance

Prevention is better than a cure, as they say. And that’s undoubtedly the case in the manufacturing industry. With downtime and failures potentially costing a company $260,000 per hour, predictive maintenance is something that almost every player in the manufacturing industry can benefit from. 

That’s why it’s one of the top manufacturing industry trends to watch for 2022.

  1. More automation

Automation in the manufacturing realm certainly isn’t a novel idea, but it’s taken large strides forward over the past few years. With the global pandemic resulting in a large-scale labor shortage, companies are turning to automation and robotics to help improve productivity and reliability. 

In fact, the industrial automation market is expected to grow by $45.32 billion from 2021 to 2025, achieving a staggering 15% CAGR. Have you embraced automation and its benefits fully?

  1. A greater focus on sustainability

With climate change becoming one of the more pressing issues of our times, manufacturing companies have a responsibility to do what they can to reduce their carbon footprint and limit their impact on the environment. 

Even so, the manufacturing sector as a whole is believed to contribute more than one-third of global greenhouse emissions today. Will sustainable manufacturing be a key manufacturing industry trend in 2022 and beyond? We’d like to think so.

  1. A need to upskill existing workers and train new ones

We’re not out of the woods just yet — the coronavirus pandemic could still cause further disruption and damage to the manufacturing industry. Companies must do what they can to improve their internal operations if they want to stand any chance of outcompeting their rivals. 

One of the best ways for business leaders to achieve this is by upskilling existing workers and training new ones. This will become especially important as manufacturing processes are brought back onshore because there will be greater demand for skilled workers domestically. 

  1. Remaking supply chains to better prepare for future disruptions

We said this before, but it’s worth stressing again: supply chains have proven fragile over the past two years — and that’s certainly not good news, not for manufacturers, not for businesses, and not for the customers who rely on them either.

On top of this, with transport costs nearing record highs and energy costs following suit, it doesn’t look like things will get much better within global supply chains any time soon. For this reason, remedying these issues will be one of the major focal points of the manufacturing industry over the next year, especially as consumer demands continue to rise. 

  1. A greater reliance on digital management solutions 

With companies prioritizing productivity and efficiency more than ever, it will be no surprise to see an ever-increasing reliance on digital management solutions too. These software solutions give companies a chance to grow, manage, analyze, and automate various operations and processes — resulting in reduced costs and improved revenue production. 

If you’re interested in bringing some of these benefits to your company, then look no further than Brahmin Solutions. We help companies to scale and grow their internal processes with a cloud-based automated operations platform, covering a wide range of business processes, including:

  • Purchase and replenishment
  • Inventory management
  • Order management
  • Warehouse and fulfillment 
  • Accounting
  • Batch and expiry tracking.

Get in contact for a personalized demo with one of our inventory experts.

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Brahm Meka
Founder & CEO

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