While the economic landscape for manufacturers has not been smooth sailing, it is important for businesses to remind themselves that there are always positive takeaways in any situation.
The global manufacturing climate has moved towards a digital age and work practices are also changing rapidly. New advanced manufacturing processes like 3D printing are replacing older, slower ones – an example of a process that is dramatically changing the way a supply chain works. With these new changes, manufacturers abroad and locally are diversifying so they can add value at different stages of the manufacturing process.
That being said, manufacturing in Australia is highly dynamic. There are many companies making valuable contributions to the country’s economic output through product innovation, employment and exports. And while the portion of GDP contributions by the manufacturing sector has been decreasing, the positivism emerging from the manufacturing community through its openness to adopt and adapt new technologies has seen that shrinkage being under control.
According to a report by the Australian Manufacturing Growth Centre (AMGC), the Australian Government, including both the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, currently defines advanced manufacturing by “two ‘input’ proxies for ‘advanced’ which were the relative research and development and skill level intensity of each sub-sector”.
While Australia has again ranked outside the world’s 20 (rank 21) most competitive countries according to the recent 2017-18 World Economic Forum (WEF) Global competitiveness report, it moved up one place from last year and has the potential to move up further if the manufacturing space continues to innovate.
Ai Group chief executive, Innes Willox, said that despite the overall ranking, there are a number of positives in this year’s WEF Competitiveness Report. He said, “Australia continues to rank in the top 10 of global economies for our financial markets (6th best) and higher education and training (9th best). But while we should celebrate our strengths, the WEF rankings illustrate that our competitiveness performance is well short of our aspirations. Australians in general are not comfortable sitting this far off the leaders’ board.
Taking stock of our achievements
Since it is important to bring out the positives in our business, the industry needs recognition for both the regular and new prospective players into the market. There are many standout marquee events to celebrate the best in the manufacturing business, and the annual Endeavour Awards leads the way in reminding the industry that it is still growing, reinventing itself and keeping production local, moving forward.
The winner of the coveted Manufacturer of the Year award, Redarc Electronics, attributes its success to being able to keep its manufacturing local despite competition against imported products from low-cost overseas competitors. Anthony Kittel, managing director of Redarc told Manufacturers’ Monthly after the 2017 Awards, “We must continue to provide a compelling value proposition to our customers in the face of cheap imports by ensuring we maintain our leading-edge technologies, products and relationships through sustained high-levels of research and development, employing highly skilled staff and customer service excellence.”
United Forklift and Access Solutions, who was awarded the Safety Solution of the Year award, was thrilled to be recognised at such an awards ceremony. Mark Versaci, marketing and CRM manager at United Equipment said that the award is a strong affirmation of this vision in delivering innovative solutions to the industry.
“We look forward to growing our business by supplying new innovative products and developing solutions that will further benefit the industry,” said Versaci.
The feeling of being rewarded for the effort put in to deliver the best quality product is second to none. This was the case with Enerpac, solutions and manufacturer of high-force tools and equipment used in industrial markets.
Managing director at Enerpac, Denis Matulin remarked, “Receiving such a prestigious award (Australian Industrial Product of the Year) is a testament to the hard work and dedication to the entire team.”
Nominations and sponsorship for
The Endeavour Awards 2018 is now open. Visit endeavourawards.com.au/
for more details.