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Manufacturing Industry Updates

Survey Documents COVID-19’s Impacts on Manufacturing Supply Chains


The pandemic-driven disruption has had both positive and negative influences on industry, as documented in a survey released today. More than 80% of manufacturing and supply chain decision-makers, for instance, report that COVID-19 has been an “extreme test” of their supply chains.

“COVID-19 is a clear point of demarcation in the industry, accelerating the transition from traditional supply chains and manufacturing to a digitally-enabled future,” Fictiv CEO Dave Evans said. “This deep dive reveals an opportunity for those industries most profoundly impacted by the physical realities of the virus to iterate faster with finer tolerances and higher quality using digital manufacturing advances.”

Fictiv and Dimensional Research surveyed 215 professionals for their study. At 32 percent of respondents, consumer electronics manufacturers represented the largest sector surveyed. Others included medical devices, robotics and automotive.

The 2020 State of Manufacturing Report‘s findings included the good:

  • Nearly all (97%) said COVID-19 created new opportunities, with 87% making digital transformation a high priority.
  • Supply chain resilience was important to 99% of respondents, with 96% working to increase supply chain agility.

The bad:

  • 89% reported a direct business impact because of COVID-19, including lower sales, increased costs of materials and production, and canceled or delayed product launches.
  • Only 17% gave top marks to their supply chains’ performance over the last year.

And the lessons learned:

  • 84% said they will be more cautious about offshoring now than in the past.
  • 73% will minimize their reliance on China; however, 74% will continue to source some parts from the region.
  • 87% reported a high-priority digital transformation initiative is underway at their organization. Top goals include cost reduction, increased supply chain visibility and improved efficiencies.

“While many businesses will examine reshoring as part of their future supply chain, China continues to offer important advantages in infrastructure and manufacturing talent — making it a stable part of any supply chain ecosystem,” Fictiv COO Jean Olivieri commented. “The opportunity for supply chain executives will be to introduce digital and AI capabilities through partners and investment that can build an agile, resilient supply chain able to flex across geographies and demand in real-time and with complete transparency.”


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