Between the global pandemic, international shutdowns and pervasive supply chain disruptions, 2020 turned the domestic manufacturing sector on its head. Despite the fact that supply chains intermittently improved throughout 2021, the metal stamping/forming industry at large is still reeling from what is amounting to a complete paradigm shift.
Heading into 2022 and beyond, one thing is for certain: the future of American manufacturing looks much different now than it did pre-COVID-19.
Domestic Manufacturing Is the Future: Onshoring and Reshoring
Traditionally, many American companies have offshored their manufacturing needs to take advantage of reduced labor and material costs. However, as the pandemic has made clear, ongoing disruptions in the supply chain can quickly cancel out all of these apparent price savings.
Moreover, businesses that rely on overseas manufacturing are increasingly hit with various production vulnerabilities such as inconsistent product quality and unexpectedly extended lead times. These factors compound over time, diminishing both your company’s reputation and flexibility within the marketplace.
The Advantages of Reshoring Your Manufacturing Projects
Reshoring or onshoring your production enables your business to become more flexible, agile and reliable. Lead times are reduced, and in many applications there is no longer a need to commit to a large volume of parts. All of this can lead to reduced costs for your business combined with higher quality products.
The Drawbacks of Offshore / Overseas Manufacturing
- Inefficient and unreliable communication with your overseas provider.
- Unpredictable production slowdowns and delayed shipments.
- Inconsistent inventory control, leading to product shortages or overstocks.
- Exorbitant freight and shipping costs consuming your bottom line.
- Longer lead times compared to domestic manufacturers.
- Unforeseen issues with labor and quality control requirements.
Material Costs and Lead Times Can Make or Break Your Production
As Bloomberg reported back in October of 2021, persistent supply chain disruptions have led to delayed turnaround times. At their peak, average lead times grew to a length not seen in the American manufacturing realm since the late 1980s.
In highly competitive markets, these longer lead times are often debilitating, stifling a business’ ability to remain flexible in both pricing and product innovation. Looking at the future of lean manufacturing, automated production solutions and inventory control will increasingly be integrated throughout the supply chain to ensure both efficiency and timeliness throughout the manufacturing process, from design to delivery.
Setting the Standard in Quality Domestic Manufacturing for 45+ Years
As an ISO 9001:2015 certified contract manufacturer, Rotation Engineering & Manufacturing has provided quality American metalworking solutions to a diverse range of global industries for nearly half a century. Based in Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, our state-of-the-art metal stamping facility is streamlined to offer your project true single-source prototype-to-production services.