SMEs are an integral part of the UK’s manufacturing landscape. Accounting for over 90 per cent of all manufacturing businesses, SMEs contribute 25 per cent of GDP each year and play a crucial role in the export of billions of pounds of goods to Europe and beyond.
The UK has been a manufacturing powerhouse for nearly 200 years: the birthplace of the Industrial Revolution and a key player in defining some of the world’s most recognisable technologies. Most people, when prompted, could name several world-famous large UK manufacturers who have built their reputation on quality and service: Rolls Royce, BAE Systems, Jaguar Land Rover, and Bristan, to name a few.
Topics: UK Manufacturing
The pressure on global supply chains has been well-documented during the last three years, particularly as the Covid-19 pandemic took hold. But as the world begins to ease restrictions and normal life returns, businesses and consumers alike have observed how prices continue to be on the rise, driving up inflation and increasing the cost of living.
When you receive a precision engineering quotation for your project, it’s easy to focus solely on the price. After all, it is in every business’s interest to manage costs to reduce overheads and maximise profits – particularly when we are facing the rising costs and scarcity of materials and consumables right now. And, if you’ve sought quotes from multiple suppliers, the temptation to simply compare the given prices and select the most attractive one – which invariably will be the lowest – is strong.
Both deep hole boring and deep hole drilling are specialised areas of precision engineering. Consequently, for buyers considering outsourcing these skills, achieving a realistic price that balances cost and quality is often challenging.
The UK’s manufacturing industry is deeply rooted in the nation’s history, yet recent times have witnessed the emergence of a skills crisis that is threatening the future of the industry. Between 2008 and 2018, nearly 500,000 manufacturing jobs were lost(1), while estimates suggest that 1.8 million new engineers are needed by 2025 in order to meet the country’s future needs(2).
As the manufacturing sector rebounds from the pandemic, how can businesses adapt to overcome the lingering challenges of 2020-1 and embrace the opportunities that await?
Topics: UK Manufacturing
With the country now emerging from the pandemic, manufacturing businesses are anticipating a healthier, more productive future. However, other factors, such as fallout from Brexit – have yet to fully subside, with a shortage in the supply of labour threatening to place a ceiling on recovery and growth.
So, what’s the current picture facing manufacturing SMEs in the UK?
The price of gas and oil has always been a bone of contention, particularly when global fluctuations are reflected in everyday business costs, such as the soaring price at the pump or rising energy bills.
More than any other industrial sector, manufacturing depends on efficient supply chains. Previously, raw materials were transformed into finished products on a single site; however, globalisation has increased the availability of components, helping to suppress costs and increasing the selection of bespoke goods for customers.