The manufacturing industry is going through a dramatic period of change and recruiting and retaining skilled staff is a big challenge. As manufacturers increasingly connect their products to analytics, artificial intelligence and IoT to drive business value, the smart factory could help overcome these challenges.
Digital technologies will help foster innovation; however, the workforce must be on board as well. The entire industry is facing a growing skills gap as the older generation begins to retire and the next generations of potential workers seem to be less interested in manufacturing careers.
The future of manufacturing does not only rely on innovative technologies, but also on an engaged workforce. Employers must start investing in the employee experience by giving them the right tools and methodologies, while empowering them to make decisions that can drive innovation and business results.
More specifically, next-generation workforce management technologies now enable the entire workforce to work the way they prefer, and work much smarter. New innovations in workforce management technology deliver applications that can operate entirely on a user’s preferred mobile device.
The advantages delivered by this mobile-first approach include greater visibility and control for employees over their entire work experience, the possibility for managers to be productive from anywhere, and improvements over traditional workflow and processes such as calling in sick, submitting time-off requests, reviewing timecards, swapping shifts, building schedules, and much more.
These next-generation workforce management solutions now include powerful machine-learning capabilities that can detect meaningful patterns within mountains of data to learn from various behaviours and make highly relevant recommendations for people managers.
Additionally, powerful embedded analytics can now provide real-time key performance indicators (KPIs), which help make managers’ jobs easier by delivering relevant metrics such as workforce productivity, overtime, and other information.
Today’s manufacturing workforce needs empowerment, flexibility, and appreciation, but tomorrow’s workforce will expect it. In fact, manufacturers will be better served by transforming the employee experience starting right now.