The manufacturing industry has long been the backbone and driving force behind the American economy. Experts often look to its performance to craft accurate prognostications regarding the future of the U.S. economy as a whole. The materials and products generated by these organizations feed into various industries, supplying them with essential operational resources. Because the manufacturing sector is so crucial to the overall health of the nation, market watchers remain eager to hear of any new developments in the industry.
Some were dismayed by The Association for Manufacturing Technology's recent announcement that manufacturing technology orders had dropped in June. Total spending for the month reached $426.83 million, representing a 5.7 percent drop compared to the same time frame last year. While these figures may give some cause for alarm, AMT President Douglas K. Wood stressed that the manufacturing industry still presented strong potential for stability, if not growth, in the coming months.
Although there are many possible reasons for technology investment stagnation, such as simply not needing to upgrade on-site machinery, failing to bolster IT capabilities with state-of-the-art supply chain management software could be a costly mistake. Manufacturing operations have grown more dependent on the reliability of their IT systems, and any disruptions to those resources could halt the supply chain in its tracks. Citing estimates from Computer Associates Technologies, IT expert Charles Iannuzzelli wrote in a recent Manufacturing Business Technology article that the average loss of revenue associated with IT downtime is $196,000 per manufacturer each year. In order to prevent such an expensive scenario from occurring, manufacturers need to be sure that they have implemented the most reliable supply chain management software available. In today's manufacturing environment, warehouse managers, floor employees and C-level officers all depend on data collection programs to stay updated on inventory counts, pallet movements and order shipments. Without a robust, state-of-the-art warehouse management solution in place, manufacturers run the risk of losing this critical monitoring functionality.