Made Smarter urges electronics manufacturers to turn pain into empowerment with digitalisation plan

09 December 2022

Digitalisation can help manufacturers cope with busy periods
Digitalisation can help manufacturers cope with busy periods

Adoption programme targets support at SMEs with free Christmas guide to ‘game-changing’ digital tools & technologies for manufacturers.

SME (small & medium-sized enterprises) manufacturers in the electronics sector are being urged to start planning for next Christmas by exploring how technology can help with the seasonal surge.

While production is in full swing to meet demand for the festive season, makers across sectors are facing a multitude of challenges, including rising energy prices, supply chain disruption and labour shortages.

But changing consumer habits towards more sustainable products, online shopping and supporting small businesses instead of huge corporations are also creating opportunities for growth.

Made Smarter, a collaboration between the UK government and industry supporting the adoption of digital technologies, is calling on manufacturers to seize the moment to start planning for the future.

It has produced a free downloadable guide to help demystify digitalisation and drive technology adoption. The document, titled ‘Is digital technology the key to success during busy periods such as Christmas?’, includes topics such as how digital tools can help: plan production and capacity; oversee and manage the workforce; forecast demand and inventory needs; manage stock levels and optimise picking; and automate the packaging process.

The guide also has case studies of Made Smarter-supported manufacturers who are reaping the benefits of investing in technology which is helping them cope with increasing demand during busy periods.

Donna Edwards, Programme Director for Made Smarter’s North West adoption programme, said: “The festive period is traditionally one of the busiest times of the year for many manufacturers, who will also be experiencing tough conditions amid increased energy and materials prices, and supply chain and labour challenges.

Thankfully, there are numerous technologies you can employ to prepare yourself for the seasonal surge, remain competitive and set yourself up for success all year round.

For manufacturers, the Christmas rush will highlight bottlenecks and other issues with their processes. The Made Smarter team can work with them to identify potential solutions to these challenges and support them to develop an implementation plan to ensure success in 2023.

Since it was launched in 2018, the adoption programme in the North West has supported 2,500 manufacturers to start their digital journey by providing them with specialist advice and a digital roadmap to help them select the right approach, level of investment and tools for their business.

More than 275 of them, supported by matched funding, have invested in new technology, ranging from software and sensors to robotics and extended reality, to become more efficient, build resilience, increase their productivity and grow sustainably.

As a result, these manufacturers are set to create 1,250 new jobs, upskill almost 2,300 existing roles, deliver an additional £176 million in gross value added (GVA) to the region, and help the UK meet its net zero target by 2050.

For more information and to download the new guide visit:

About Made Smarter
Made Smarter is the UK national industrial digitalisation movement to drive productivity and growth of manufacturing industries and put the UK at the forefront of the 4th Industrial Revolution. Backed by world-renowned businesses and working in partnership with the UK government, Made Smarter will make a real, everyday difference to people from the boardroom to the factory floor.

Made Smarter was formed following a nationwide review into UK manufacturing that recommended key changes: more ambitious leadership; greater innovation in developing new technologies; faster implementation and adoption of these technologies; and deeper understanding of the sector’s skills requirements. We’ll be boosting digital skills in the sector, bringing businesses and R&D together to develop new technology, and helping makers embrace new digital tools. In doing so, we’ll inspire the next industrial revolution and make the UK a leader in digital technologies. For more information, visit:

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