Today’s manufacturing and supply chain landscape is prominently characterized by two seemingly competing forces: globalization and localization. They are both tremendously important while setting a different framework for growth. Globalization has emerging markets which are demanding a greater supply of goods, utilizing more sophisticated supply chain approaches as well as products must compete on a truly global scale. On the other side, with regulation relief, tax reform proposed and enthusiasm in the public debate for keeping manufacturing jobs at home, Localization has growing appeal even with the disrupter of 3D printing and smaller demand runs.
So, how should manufacturers balance both concepts while still being competitive? First, we need to accept that Globalization and localization don’t necessarily have to be opposed. When we stop seeing globalization and localization as necessarily opposed to each other, we see many steps that manufacturers are taking to stay ahead of the curve can satisfy both needs. In addition to embracing automation technology, below are two key developments that every manufacturer and supply chain partner must consider: