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Navigating Challenges and Embracing Opportunities

10 May 2024

Navigating Challenges and Embracing Opportunities: A Closer Look at Manufacturing in the East Midlands.

The manufacturing sector is facing a challenging road ahead, with forecasts indicating two years of sluggish growth across Britain. According to the latest insights from Make UK’s Manufacturing Outlook 2024 Q1 report, in collaboration with BDO, the sector is expected to see minimal growth, with an increase of just 0.1% projected for this year, followed by a small rise of 0.8% in 2025. These figures, notably lower than the forecasted GDP rate for the overall economy, present a subdued outlook for manufacturing.

Despite these projections, manufacturing companies in the East Midlands continue to be resilient and confident. The latest Make UK Report reveals an increase in investment and recruitment intentions compared to the previous quarter, reflecting a clear determination to navigate through challenging economic conditions. Additionally, even with reduced output and investment intentions, employment has risen. This resilience is a testament to the determination of manufacturers in the East Midlands, who are adapting to evolving circumstances and meeting the continued demand for labour.

One significant factor contributing to this resilience is the adoption of digital transformation initiatives like Made Smarter East Midlands. This fully funded programme provides local manufacturing SMEs with the opportunity to enhance their operations through cutting-edge technology. With benefits including access to grant funding of up to £20,000, expert support, and tailored training, businesses can seamlessly integrate digital advancements such as automation, robotics, 3D modelling, and data integration into their operations.

By embracing digital advancements, manufacturers can achieve significant improvements in productivity, efficiency, and cost savings. The benefits of digital adoption extend beyond efficiency gains; they encompass resilience to global disruptions, increase competitiveness, and reduce environmental impact. Made Smarter East Midlands has already made a substantial impact, having proudly awarded grants totalling over £550k to support local manufacturing SMEs.

In summary, while Britain’s manufacturing sector may be facing various challenges, there are numerous opportunities for growth and resilience through strategic support and digital transformation initiatives. By embracing innovation and digital adoption, the sector in the East Midlands can not only navigate through challenges, but also emerge stronger and more competitive in the long run.

If you are ready to embark on your digital journey and improve your manufacturing operations, register your interest for Made Smarter support today and take the first step towards a more innovative and resilient future for your business!

With determination, collaboration, and the right support, the future of manufacturing in the East Midlands is, and can continue to be, bright.

Read more about Made Smarter Here