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Is the manufacturing industry about to take a beating from other industries? That's what many doomsayers are claiming, but a factory is nowhere near as doomed as some may assume. You just have to make sure you’re future-proofing your business.

Looking to the future

People don’t usually have futuristic images in their mind when they imagine a factory. But factories are actually moving forward quite well, especially when it comes to the utilization of Internet of Things technology. The question is, will you factory fall behind or follow suite? Though it may seem like an expensive move, the introduction of IoT technologies that track manufacturing data and assist automation is the future and will help keep your factory around for a long time. There’s a reason this movement is being referred to as Industry 4.0!

Inspection and maintenance

Still, we’re not quite in the era in which equipment is inspecting and maintaining itself. To be honest, if we ever see that day, it probably won’t be in the lifetime of anyone reading this! (Apologies for the uncomfortable reminder of our mortality.) If your equipment isn’t built to last, then you’re going to have quite a bit of trouble keeping the factory afloat for the future, right? You need to ensure your equipment lasts as long as you need it to. Frequent inspection and maintenance is a must, as is working with a parts supplier such as JIC Fittings.

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A focus on quality

The factory that focuses on quantity over quality isn’t going to last very long. Of course, some may argue that many factory owners are contracted to produce whatever their clients want them to produce, and in the precise manner instructed. This means you’ve also get to be a bit picky about your clients, too. After all, it doesn’t matter if the client requested it: that lack of quality will soon become apparent, and it will reflect on your factory as well as the client’s business. So try to ensure you’re working with clients who aren’t willing to risk the sullying of your reputation.

Networking

More than ever, it’s becoming important for people in the manufacturing industry to connect and share expertise. This is what will help you keep up-to-date with the latest practices; otherwise, you're just going to be operating in an inconvenient bubble. The more contacts you have in other industry, the easier it will be to get new partnerships and technologies. Companies are becoming more collaborative, and this is a trend that will increase in the years ahead. So get out there and network! Don’t just assume it’s something other businesses do!

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Profit margins

Whatever your loftier goals, the need for healthy profit margins should be what drives many of your decisions. Many don’t want to admit that this is the case. But if you’re not paying attention to the expansion of profit, then you’re not setting yourself up for a very secure future. There are many other factors you may use to gauge your factory’s financial health. But in the end, the gross profit percentage is going to have one of the biggest impacts on the longevity and capabilities of your business.