4 hottest industry trends that will shape manufacturing in 2017

Understanding which industry trends are on the rise, as well as which ones are fizzling out, is a must to make your manufacturing business successful. Industry trends tend to change every year. For future growth, it is important to be aware of the upcoming predictions and incorporate them into your business model.


Here is a list of industry trends for 2017 to help you in your business planning for this new year.

#1: Service as a Product

The global market has become more complex and competitive, highlighting for product manufacturers the need for innovative solutions and strong customer service. Automotive manufacturers traditionally rely on a network of authorized dealerships to handle the sales and service of their vehicles. In essence, they have combined installation or maintenance services to the overall product, thereby offering a complete solution. This is often a profitable model. The repair and upgrade of a product is another area where service can be bundled as part of production. Manufacturing organizations that take advantage of this opportunity in service innovation will be the ones to come out the winner in the long run.

#2: Green Manufacturing

Green manufacturing is becoming an increasingly important business strategy for the manufacturing sector. This trend continues to rise as pollution and unnecessary waste production remains a big concern for the world. Moreover, customers now consider how “green” a company is when making a purchasing decision. Hence, manufacturing practices that reduce waste or rely on sources of renewable energy are in demand, as these practices can significantly reduce manufacturing costs. Now more than ever, there is a greater emphasis on recycling and reusing what once was considered waste.

#3: Automatic Factories and Repairs

Innovative automation systems will be the core of future manufacturing growth. This means solutions such as industrial robotics will be increasingly used in manufacturing. This doesn’t mean that manufacturing will not need people. Manufacturing will still need people, but the demand may shift away from the factory floor into the design, programming, and servicing roles in support of automated machinery. This trend will only continue to rise in 2017. 

#4: Nearsharing (or Newshoring)

Nearsharing refers to the outsourcing of business processes to companies in a nearby country. The target country is often one that shares a geographical border with the originating company, but this trend can transcend geography. Manufacturers will not simply be moving operations to other countries; they will be reinventing their entire ecosystem. By leveraging advanced technologies, manufacturers will be close to their customers without having to move their main operations. Additionally, the company will constantly monitor their production equipment to catch any malfunctions before a full breakdown occurs. 

In addition to the four trends highlighted above, 3D printing and social media will continue to be important. Paying close attention to these 2017 manufacturing industry trends, and finding ways to incorporate them, will help manufacturers achieve business growth and profitability.

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