It has undoubtedly been a turbulent last few years for UK car production, which is one of the many industries to have been impacted by the triple-dip recession.This is why it is particularly pleasing to hear the news that UK car production has accelerated back to pre-recession levels.
According to figures released by The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), production has soared. A total of 140,888 cars were built in the UK in September 2013 – 9.9% more than in September last year. A total of 230,743 engines were manufactured in September – up 8.3% on the September 2012 figure.
These statistics are to be welcomed, especially as many UK manufacturers depend on just one customer, with at least a third of their business stemming from one single source. Surprising isn’t it?The reason for this may be logical and historical however, this approach does carry two major implications for businesses as:
- They would be jeopardised if the customer left or considerably scaled back its order
- It is an extremely blinkered approach in which potential revenue is being ignored
So, how exactly does a manufacturer effectively spread its wings in the big wide world? First of all, it needs to consider how its capabilities can be applied to different sectors.
I know it may sound obvious, but one of our clients had a solid reputation making components for the brewery industry. However, there was no reason why they could not manufacture components for cars using the same techniques and machinery.
Companies need to make a list of all of their current capabilities. Once they have done this, they need to then take the time to seriously think about other applications that require these skills as part of the manufacturing process. Taking this simple, yet effective, cross-cutting approach can really pay dividends for those who take the time to do it.