This is where Made Smarter comes in. We visit manufacturing and engineering businesses, assess their particular challenges and desires, and help create a roadmap for them to overcome the issues they are facing.
We also provide significant grants to give them a leg-up when it comes to purchasing new technology that enables them to kickstart their plans.
I am already speaking to plenty of businesses in Worcestershire about Made Smarter, and the challenges for them are similar to everywhere else in the West Midlands – namely how to increase productivity without taking on more staff.
For example, quite a lot of businesses still use paper records for everything from orders to job cards, and some are reluctant to change to a better, digital system because of the risks from short-term disruption, the investment needed and confusion over what steps to take and in what order.
But I would say to any business on the fence about making the push to digitalisation is to give Made Smarter a try – there are enormous benefits.
Businesses are first visited by the Manufacturing Technology Centre (MTC) or WMG, at the University of Warwick, who can audit the business over eight days and find out exactly where improvements can be made, and how best the business can make those improvements.
Up to £20,000 of grants are available for capital investment into new machinery or software – and 50 per cent of these grants are match funded. MTC and WMG can advise businesses on what they should spend the money on if they are unsure.
MTC and WMG will also help create a roadmap for the business, outlining exactly how they will get from where they are now to where they want to be in the future.
Contact Martyn Mangan via email firstname.lastname@example.org