June 11, 2014
Enola Labs

Enola Labs creates custom strategy and products for mobile and web.

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Digital media has become king in the buying and selling world- more and more often, the buying cycle is influenced and ran by digital resources and processes. For manufacturing companies, this means that the implementation of a digital strategy has become essential to staying competitive.

The expanding digital world has influenced all industries, and manufacturing is no exception. Through a digital strategy, a manufacturing company can see many benefits, such as lower risk, improved customer satisfaction, faster time-to-market, further innovation, and global competitiveness. But, what aspects make up a strong digital strategy for a manufacturer? We’ll run you through the essentials that you should take into consideration when developing a digital strategy for your manufacturing business.

Digital Collaboration Tools

One of the most useful digital strategy tools involves collaboration tools for manufacturing employees. Software that allows employees to work remotely, communicate from anywhere, at anytime, and add and remove information from documents and forums promotes greater collaboration and furthers idea generation. Digital tools that allow employees to communicate more efficiently also fosters innovation and allows for greater thinking and on-the-go interaction.

Benefits: greater communication, efficient collaboration, enhanced employee involvement

Virtual Prototyping Tools

Tools that allow manufacturers to virtually prototype their systems and products allow for less risk before bringing the product to market. Products can be tested and evaluated quickly, without production costs, allowing manufacturers to save both time and money. When manufacturing companies do not need to build actual, physical prototypes, the common risks associated with the engineering are avoided. Virtual tools also allow employees to evaluate methods and conduct analysis on products before they are even tangible. The access to mock-ups such as this is invaluable.

Benefits: lower production costs, lower manufacturing risk, quicker and more efficient evaluation

Digital Manufacturing Devices

Creating digital models and mapping our manufacturing processes virtually allows for optimization, which is crucial to a high ROI. Before a product even reaches a shop floor, a digital factory can help visualize worker flows and logistics to ensure everything runs smoothly and optimally, which, in turn, lowers manufacturing and engineering costs.

Benefits: increased optimization, enhanced logistic processes, lower manufacturing and engineering costs

Digital Analytics

The use of digital analytics helps reduce working costs by allowing manufacturers to visualize virtual factory data and get insight into information such as predictive maintenance and optimized material flows. Digital analyzing tools provide constant, continuous feedback that improves operations and creates more efficient processes.

Benefits: invaluable insight, continuous feedback, improved operations, optimized processes

Automated Processes

Automating processes on the factory floor allows for a quicker time-to-market for products. Automated factories limit inventory costs due to the optimization of processes and supply chains, helping manufacturers use their current warehouses more effectively.

Benefits: more effective processes, faster time-to-market, lower inventory cost

Digital Supply Chains

Digital supply chains provide manufacturers with the tools they need to adjust as their market changes, allowing for global competitiveness. By creating online parts and orders tracking and other virtualized processes, manufacturing companies create a streamlined supply chain system that saves time and improves customer satisfaction.

Benefits: global competitiveness, streamlined supply chain, improved customer satisfaction

Virtual Marketing Campaigns

Any solid digital strategy includes some sort of online marketing execution. Having a virtual marketing campaign allows manufacturing companies to really get in touch with their target market and improve their customer service capabilities. Market insights help build long-term relationships with clients and generates new revenue streams through engaging customers and reaching them mobilly.

Benefits: increased customer satisfaction, greater online brand presence, increased brand recognition, improved digital awareness

What it All Means for Your Manufacturing Business

A digital strategy, in every industry, is no longer a “maybe,” but has turned into a “must-have.” In order to stay competitive and engage consumers, manufacturing companies need to transform their business and make the shift to digital. Though a digital strategy may seem like daunting task at first, in the long run, it only brings benefits and optimization to a business, and the benefits outweigh the initial cost.

From the boardroom to the fab, Enola Labs manufacturing industry experts specialize in solving some of the most difficult problems facing manufacturing companies today.