There’s no denying that manufacturing plays a big role in both the Canadian economy and the global economy. In Canada, manufacturing represents more than 10% of annual national GDP. This $173 billion industry provides over 1.5 million jobs to hard working Canadians and comprises over 60% of the country’s merchandise exports.
SPECIFIC CHALLENGES IN MANUFACTURING OPERATIONS
All areas of the economy are presented with their own unique issues and demands. However, the unique challenges to manufacturing are multilayered and multifaceted. These include:
THE CANADIAN ECOMOMY
The Canadian dollar has been fluctuating considerably both above and below the value of the U.S. dollar for a decade, but its value seems to stagnate around 0.75USD.
The impact for manufacturers exporting is major, and those who knew well how to position their company do enjoy this situation right now. On the other hand, those which do not export and import most of their raw materials, are working harder to retain their margins and market share. You need to know how to take advantage of this period of relative stability to review supply chains and test other markets. One should use a well-articulated strategy, include business objectives, focus on what really matters businesswise, and keep in mind the trends.
According to a recent study by manufacturers and exporters of Quebec (MEQ), there is a skilled workforce shortage in several provinces. It has never been as difficult to get qualified people to work in the Canadian manufacturing sector. Recruiting qualified technicians, engineers, scientists and even management staff becomes more and more difficult. Businesses in the regions are particularly affected. They have to establish all efforts to make their staff versatile, be able to attract new qualified staff with challenges that will correspond to their aspirations, especially for the new generations. Ironically, part of the solution is eliminating non-value staff; workstations that have a high rates of staff turnover are often and easy to automate.
THE EFFECTIVENESS OF MANUFACTURERS
The third major challenge is related to efficiency and productivity. We agree that automating procedures and processes, robotics and other technological solutions are part of the equation, but we must also work on the competence of managers and on the efficiency of the process. Automate wastes is working nothing. Paradigms must be broken, processes, design and production process rethought.
For businesses who feel concerned by these three issues and who are not actively working, it’s time to pull the alarm! Easy? Not, of course. We would not be talking about them otherwise. It is not easy to navigate without a map in a market as competitive as this one.
LET MERKUR HELP!
Processes can be redesigned to be more efficient, operations can be streamlined, and the results can always be higher. This is where Merkur comes in. We’re a joint Eastern Townships and Montreal operational excellence consultants firm with a proven thrive track record of helping businesses in the manufacturing sector.
As an industrial engineering firm and as operational excellence experts, we know how challenging it can be to find great people and run your business with efficiency in this uncertain economy. But more than that, we can help.
When you and your company work with Merkur to overcome the challenges that you’re facing, you can expect the best in manufacturing operation support and analysis. We have been working with over 100 satisfied clients on a consulting and coaching basis. In our mandates are providing support for high-level business decisions-making, as well as intermediate decision-making related to production lines and operations. Furthermore, we have been implementing several projects including reengineering processes, change management and reinforced operational support.
The results of Merkur’s guidance have been overwhelmingly positive. Our clients have acknowledged our work and witness businesswise gains in numerous areas, such as:
- Team mobilization
- More trusting relationships among staff members
- Better and faster decision making
- More effective data analysis
- Improved overall communication
All of these significant improvements have had a long-term and positive impact on our clients’ business performance, efficiency, and return on investment (ROI). They may not be directly related to profits, but their aftereffects are more than valuable for our clients’ business.
How can Merkur help you? We have over 20 years of experience, and have seen countless ups and downs in manufacturing. But most importantly, we absolutely understand the Canadian manufacturing sector and situation, and we are ready to put our expertise to work for you and your business.