Welcome to the last week of December when the best-of, year-in-review, looking-ahead, and every other type of list comes out to summarize the current year, toss a bow on it, and move on to the next. ‘Tis the season, after all!
While there’s no shortage of places to find these sorts of articles (some links below for your list-reading pleasure), it’s important to remember that things move fast and predictions are fluid. Take, for example, the ‘Other Articles You May Enjoy’ list I recently saw on a manufacturing news site. Back to back were two headlines that seemed nearly polar opposite in their tone: Manufacturing Cuts 4,000 Jobs in November and US Manufacturing Expands in November. Of course, both of these things can simultaneously be true (manufacturing can expand in some areas and still decrease jobs in another), but seeing them right up next to one another was a good reminder that perspective can vary and a single list or article can’t contain all the information you need. That’s why more than anything, you need to ensure you’re working with partners and platforms that you can trust to support your business and your objectives.
Keeping some healthy skepticism in mind, here are some technology and manufacturing trends of particular interest to the team at Luxent which focuses on bringing smarter, easier to use, user-friendly technology to manufacturers in order to increase efficiency and productivity.
- Device Makers Will Continue Leveraging Technology (Advanced Manufacturing) – In this in-depth post, there’s great information about the ‘why’ behind the title. Specifically, the expansion of the Internet of Things, additive manufacturing, and an increased focus on lean and even automated practices.
- Our take: Although this article is about device makers, there are takeaways for manufacturers of all types; best practices are changing and manufacturers should be thinking about where they can drive efficiency through all points of their businesses.
- Top 7 ERP Trends for 2017 and Beyond (Search Manufacturing ERP //Tech Target) – Some of the biggest names in ERP thought leadership are included in this piece (Frank Scavo, Eric Kimberling) and they have some interesting thoughts on what’s happening in ERP now and long after 2017.
- UX Trends 2017 (Forbes) – UX has been a hot topic for a while now and with 2017 allegedly the year UX is ‘really going to finally happen’, this article offers some insights into the expansions you may see sooner than you expected.
- Our take: As you can tell from our logo, UX (User Experience) is incredibly important to us, both with regard to how a user experiences the technology itself as well as how a user experiences the process of implementing/learning/using technology. From our consulting to our solutions themselves, UX is at the heart of it. Top to bottom UX should be a priority when you’re considering new technology and/or partners.
- Predictions for Enterprise Robotics (CIO Today) – The world of robots is quickly growing and evolving and this article does a nice job highlighting some of the opportunities and challenges ahead when it comes to manufacturing and adoption robotic elements.
- Our take: Similar to some of the other articles and trends already highlighted, things are continuing to change in the world of manufacturing and distribution and taking stock of which changes are right to adopt, and how to make the most of the technology you’re investing in, is crucial.
- 3 CRM Predictions for 2017 (Business Solutions) – ERP is the platform most readily linked with manufacturing but CRM is not to be forgotten. Whatever your plans for growth in 2017, chances are good they depend on keeping the customers you have and adding new ones–a solid CRM platform is the best way to manage these relationships.
- Our take: As quoted in this article, in its recent CRM report, Gartner said that ‘using analytics and AI to deliver greater relevance in customer support interactions will be key to customer excellence’. We definitely agree that CRM, Salesforce specifically, is central to achieving customer excellence goals as well as top-line growth.
With that, we’ll wrap up our look at technology and manufacturing trends. There’s certainly plenty here to consider and sift through. The Luxent team of NetSuite Cloud ERP and Salesforce CRM experts are happy to help with any reviews, decisions, or input you may need to make 2017 your best year yet. Contact us anytime and we’ll be happy to help!