Michigan Manufacturing in 2020: A Year in Review


2021.jpgAt the beginning of 2020, we made a few predictions about how manufacturing would fare throughout the new year, touching on industry-wide challenges and trends such as the talent shortage, international tariffs and technology investments. However, we could not have predicted the new, unprecedented challenges that came with a world-wide pandemic and uncertain economy, which only intensified manufacturers’ existing problems related to efficiency, labor and safety.

In order to keep their companies afloat and moving toward success throughout 2020, manufacturers had to get creative with their business strategies. Our blog posts from the year tell the story of these challenges, triumphs and techniques, showing how manufacturers in Michigan and around the nation proved their resilience and strength in the face of new levels of difficulty, as seen in our blog highlights below.

  • How Michigan Manufacturers are Contributing to COVID-19 Response Efforts - To contribute to COVID-19 mitigation efforts and ensure healthcare workers, patients and individuals are getting the resources they need, manufacturers around the state have increased production or retooled entirely to provide medical devices that are desperately needed.
  • When the Pandemic is Over: Using ISO to Plan & Prepare - For organizations that are compliant to ISO 9001:2015 (including AS9100D and IATF 16949), there are several requirements that can be used to assist in getting back to business as usual – and putting together a plan is one of them.
  • Answers from the Experts – Advice for Restarting Operations After COVID-19 - With manufacturing facilities around Michigan starting to reopen, there are still many lingering questions about how to ensure a successful and safe return while continuing to advance processes. To provide assistance during this time, The Center’s experts have answered manufacturers’ most pressing questions.
  • Restarting with Social Distancing – How Lean Manufacturing Can Help - As manufacturers prepare to return to work in accordance with the current restrictions of social distancing, much assistance can come from implementing common Lean manufacturing practices.
  • COVID-19 Emphasizes the Need for New Skills Among Current Workers - The COVID-19 outbreak forced companies to evaluate and transform their traditional ways of doing business nearly overnight. As companies worked to acclimate to this new environment, many came to realize their abilities to reskill or upskill workers were not sufficient to keep up with the rapidly changing landscape.
  • Redefining “Work” in the Era of COVID-19 - COVID-19 has forced companies to drastically change work environments in terms of safety, location and culture. Amid this workplace transition, manufacturing companies have faced a more complex challenge in determining how to manage employee "office" locations. When evaluating if it makes sense for your employees to work remotely or in-office, here are some key points to take into consideration.
  • 9 Reasons Cybersecurity Should Be a Priority in Your Business Right Now - With countless workers now using personal laptops and home internet connections, rather than dedicated servers and equipment with stronger cybersecurity, hackers are provided an easy access point into confidential company data. Due to this heightened and evolving risk, it is now more critical than ever for companies to focus on establishing robust cybersecurity practices if they hope to keep their businesses safe in this new threat landscape.

Throughout 2020, being prepared and adaptable proved to be essential. Going into 2021, these skills will be even more important to keep Michigan’s manufacturing and economy moving forward to prosperity.

For assistance with your business initiatives in 2021, whether it’s to get Lean, diversify product offerings, enhance quality, strengthen cybersecurity or more, The Center can help. Visit the-center.org to learn more or contact us at inquiry@the-center.org to speak with our experts today.

Since 1991, the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center has assisted Michigan’s small and medium-sized businesses to successfully compete and grow. Through personalized services designed to meet the needs of clients, we develop more effective business leaders, drive product and process innovation, promote company-wide operational excellence and foster creative strategies for business growth and greater profitability. Find us at www.the-center.org.

Categories: U.S. Manufacturing