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Ahead of the launch of a new peer-to-peer network, Ruth Hailwood, Made Smarter's Head of Organisation and Workforce Development, discusses how enabling manufacturers to learn from each other can accelerate digital adoption.

Since 2019, the North West adoption programme has blazed a trail in its approach to helping SME manufacturers tackle digital transformation the right way.

Through our Leading Digital Transformation and Leading Change for Digital Champions programmes, we have taken a multi-levelled skills approach, offering high impact and focused support from the top floor to the shop floor.

These activities have created strong and impactful connections between SMEs across the region. Many have offered site visits to demonstrate their practices which have proved really valuable. 

On July 23, the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) in Liverpool will host the launch of The Digital Champions Network, bringing together dozens of past and present participants of the adoption programme.

The half-day session will feature ‘learning’ roundtables and a panel discussion featuring Made Smarter advisers Will Kinghorn, Claire Scott and Jan Woodward, alongside Mark Sutherberry, Senior Business Development Manager at the MTC, and a number of digital champions from the Made Smarter programme.

There will also be a tour of the MTC, the High Value Manufacturing Catapult-backed demonstrator which showcases how advanced manufacturing equipment can be applied to industry to support skills, productivity and growth across UK manufacturing.

The Digital Champions Network formalises what Made Smarter has been working towards for the last five years.

Peer networks allow businesses to learn from one another, share and discuss new ideas and grow their businesses by working through challenges.

It will connect digital champions at different stages of technology adoption to share learning and experience.

We are excited to launch this initiative which has the potential for us to create momentum across SMEs in the region.

To find out more about Made Smarter’s Leadership and Digital Champions Programmes click here.

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