We Saw This Coming


Reading time ( words)

There have been quite a few predictions and studies, along with plenty of wishful thinking, about the cost of manufacturing in the U.S. The onshoring/re-shoring movement has gained a lot of attention from media like ours over the last couple of years. IPC even issued a report last year providing their take on the movement, which garnered a lot of interest from the industry.

Now, The Boston Consulting Group (BCG), a global management consultant, has released new research on the “dramatic” change of manufacturing cost competitiveness around the world. BCG’s press release is entitled, “Study Reveals Striking Shifts in Global Manufacturing Costs over the Past Decade.” I found the use of the word “striking” to be interesting. It almost leads me to believe they were surprised by the trends in manufacturing costs.

For those of us watching the shift over the last few years, it isn’t striking at all. It’s been coming for some time. As I’ve said in the past, all things come back into balance. The rising costs in Asia, and China in particular, have made it very clear that you can only sustain dirt-cheap manufacturing for so long. At some point, lax or non-existent labor and environmental standards, ridiculous lending policies, manipulated currencies, etc., will yield a day of reckoning. People get tired of breathing bad air and drinking polluted water. Trading partners say “enough is enough” and demand fair currency valuations. And banks struggle to survive under the weight of bad loans made during the heady days of unbridled growth.

Read the full column here.


Editor's Note: This column originally appeared in the June 2014 issue of SMT Magazine.

Share

Print


Suggested Items

Excerpt: The Printed Circuit Assembler’s Guide to… Smart Data, Chapter 2

04/21/2021 | Sagi Reuven and Zac Elliott, Siemens Digital Industries Software
Companies have been collecting data in large volumes. Highly varied data from manufacturing operations comes in quickly that needs to be validated, and its value prioritized so that it can be turned into something useful—transformed from big data to smart data. The amount of data available has grown exponentially into big data. Twenty years ago, a PCB work order resulted in 100 data records, megabytes of data; today, it is 10 billion records, terabytes of data. The investment in collecting this data and storing it is high. However, without a way to analyze the data, without analytics, it will not result in ROI.

Excerpt: The Printed Circuit Assembler’s Guide to… Smart Data

04/07/2021 | Sagi Reuven and Zac Elliott, Siemens Digital Industries Software
Whenever we discuss data, keep in mind that people have been collecting data, verifying it, and translating it into reports for a long time. And if data is collected and processes are changed automatically, people still will be interpreting and verifying the accuracy of the data, creating reports, making recommendations, solving problems, tweaking, improving, and innovating. Whatever data collection system is used, any effort to digitalize needs to engage and empower the production team at the factory. Their role is to attend to the manufacturing process but also to act as the front line of communications and control.

What Makes a Great Supply Chain Manager?

04/05/2021 | Timothy McLean, TXM Lean Solutions
Building a competitive and reliable supply chain is a critical success factor for any manufacturing business. This is especially true today, where we face constant volatility and disruption across global supply chains. In this environment, effective supply chain leadership is more critical than ever. So, what makes a great supply chain manager?



Copyright © 2021 I-Connect007. All rights reserved.