You can download the full report here – bit.ly/AMR2016
The 2016 Annual Manufacturing Report, published by Hennik Research, demonstrates once again the resilience of British manufacturing. The steel industry has shrunk by around 9% this year and closures have hit the headlines, but manufacturers are, broadly, confident about the future. The survey this year found the second-highest positive outlook since the Report began, in 2008.
Manufacturers are much less positive – indeed, strongly negative – regarding skills and, particularly, the preparedness for work of young school and college leavers. The overwhelming majority of respondents find them “poorly” or “very poorly” prepared for the working environment.
Employment opportunities are widespread and across the board, from administration and IT to engineering and management. Training, including formal apprenticeships, is ongoing – manufacturers are prepared to invest in their workforce, including youngsters, and 40 to 60% reported that they have given ‘first jobs’ to school and college leavers, and/or university graduates.
Investment is trending towards the ‘strategic’ end of the spectrum. Manufacturers are seeking to develop new products, upgrade their systems and automate processes.
Once again, the Government’s handling of the economy is regarded as good overall, but less so when it comes to manufacturing, specifically.
For the first time this year, the Annual Manufacturing report asked about the Internet of Things. The response indicates that manufacturers are yet to be convinced and are adopting a ‘wait and see’ attitude.
Servitization, which extends the relationship between manufacturer and customer beyond mere provision of goods to fuller and deeper engagement, is currently a minority pursuit. This year’s survey has established a benchmark that will measure its development in the future.