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Manufacturing Trends with the New Presidential Administration & How You Can Thrive in 2021

Paul Lachance
  • Mar 04, 2021
  • 4 minutes

Last year brought with it tons of change in our work and personal lives. And while 2021 feels like a fresh start in some ways, it’s also going to present changes, especially within the manufacturing sector.

As with every new presidential administration, that change may create headwinds or tailwinds for your industry. With Biden, an example area that might have some adverse impact would include fossilfuel related industry (example: Keystone XXL pipeline cancelation). Regulations will likely come back to the pre-Trump era and there is always the possibility of increased corporate taxes. Still, many other industries will be bolstered. In all cases – whether you are busy or slow, operating “lean” is key.

Current state of manufacturing

Amid many challenges, US manufacturing has shown many signs of resiliency. 

For example, in the past six months, the US Manufacturing PMI Index has been able to bounce back and show significant growth over 2019. 

MFG PMI graph

(Source: https://tradingeconomics.com/united-states/manufacturing-pmi )

As manufacturing makes up 12% of the US economy, it is encouraging to see signs of improvement and lifts to production – especially in durable-goods and related sectors. Whether your industry has positive or negative impact, promoting efficient manufacturing practices will help you do your best with fewer resources.

Presidential administration policies to be aware of

With just a few months in office, the Biden administration has already released policies and executive orders that are sure to impact the manufacturing industry. 

Here are a few to be aware of and learn more about extent of their effects.

‘Made in America’ executive order

This executive order is a largely bipartisan enhanced continuation of previous administrations and is focused around improving the amount of US-made goods and using manufacturing to strengthen the US economy.

What is the focus: “To support manufacturers, businesses and workers to ensure that our future is made in all of America by all of America’s workers”1

This order applies to an annual federal purchase of $600 billion in goods and services and is a continuation of an “America-first” manufacturing perspective. This US-first policy includes:

  • Increase oversight/transparency of waivers to domestic preference laws
  • Direct increase in threshold and price preferences for domestic goods before government can buy from non-U.S. supplier (an effort to reduce loopholes for what is truly “made in America”)
  • Create a “Director of Made-in-America” at the Office of Management and Budget

How could it impact you:

  • Buying “American” benefits the small-to-large US-based manufacturers by increasing demand and orders
  • Spur innovation to reshore manufacturing that left the US in previous decades
  • Opportunity to drive up wages, create more jobs, support minority-owned businesses
  • Rebuild of supply chains and building up of new ones – especially of US-based companies
  • Overall, more opportunity for Made in USA goods and what that could mean to your business

‘Build Back Better’

This is the theme for Biden’s jobs and economic recovery plan, and it has some specific relevance to manufacturers.

What is the focusRelated to manufacturing, this proposed legislation willinclude historic investments in infrastructureand clean energy. Specifically, the goal is to “mobilize American ingenuity to build a modern infrastructure and an equitable, clean energy future.”2

How could it impact you:

Let’s look at the two parts of this order that may impact manufacturing the most.

Infrastructure

Modernize US infrastructure through intelligent infrastructure that includes: 

  • Roads, tunnels and bridges which anticipate the emergence of autonomous vehicles and mass transportation
  • Water management systems that protect the watershed and provide universal clean water
  • Robust electrical grid that enables alternative energy sources to be fully integrated
  • Broadband access to every American

In each of these areas of infrastructure improvements, there will be impact to manufacturers, from increased production needs to advances in technology required.

Clean energy

On the energy side, there is a focus on improving efficiency and clean power, including:

  • Retooling the auto industry toward electronic vehicles and carbon-alternative fuel
  • Clean power and distribution to supply the next generation power grids
  • Efficiency upgrades and retrofits in homes, businesses and municipalities

All of these “build back better” projects will lead to technology innovations, product development and ultimately US-based manufacturing growth.

How can you prepare to thrive

With all the new executive orders and proposed changes comes with more for you to consider as you continue to try to operate efficiently.You can make progress if your industry has head or tail winds.

But, there are a few key areas where you can improve to be prepared for these changes and even thrive in 2021.

Stay ‘lean’

Ensuring you can operate lean and efficiently is key to thriving amid change. From equipping your team to maximizing asset uptime to optimizing inventory, find areas where you can tighten up processes and efficiencies. 

See how efficient you are today with this checklist.

Embrace solid parts management

Make sure you’re prepared for any supply chain issues with a good parts and inventory management system. This will help you avoid stock-outs and utilize realistic just-in-time availability to always have what you need on hand. 

Learn more about controlling your inventory.

Address your changing workforce

You are working in the midst of a changing and aging workforce, but there are still ways you can be prepared to do your best work within today’s challenges. Embrace training and using technology to build up the skills of your team.

Get extra tips for navigating your changing workforce in this guide.

Utilize your CMMS

Your computerized maintenance management system (CMMS) is critical to your success moving forward. It is the key for building up the areas above and can help you truly kickstart operational efficiency, preventive and predictive maintenance, and workflow optimization.

In fact, the right CMMS can unlock:

  • 28% increase in maintenance productivity
  • 20% reduction in equipment downtime
  • 19% savings in material costs
When you and your team have the right tools, it doesn’t matter what changes come your way.

Interested in learning about how our software works for you?

Or want to ask a question?

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