IDC Futurescape - 2015 Manufacturing Top 10 Decision Imperatives
Following a year that saw record levels of recalls, it’s no surprise that analysts are predicting product quality will be a top priority for manufacturers in 2015. In December, the IDC Manufacturing Insights team presented the IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Manufacturing 2015 Predictions. At the top of their list, they predict quality improvement related investments will drive two-thirds of IT spending in the manufacturing industry in 2015.
While the automotive industry dominated the headlines last year, quality is not just a challenge in automotive. It cuts across all manufacturing sectors, every geography and every domain – engineering, supply chain and manufacturing. As manufacturers scale to serve more markets, they face growing product complexity, product proliferation and increasingly complex supply chain networks.
IDC’s Heather Ashton concludes, “There is no way around the fact that product quality is hard to guarantee.”
Quality is hard
Practitioners have searched for decades for a silver bullet. Following advice from gurus such as Deming, Juran and others, the industry has made tremendous strides toward higher quality. In absolute terms, experts agree that product quality, even automobile quality, safety and reliability is better than ever. But with the reasons already stated and the rise of social media, the bar is being raised faster than manufacturers can keep up.
Last year, I wrote about the need for a shift in the quality paradigm. Shift to one of looking at quality from the outside in. A view that incorporates the voice of the process, the voice of the product and the voice of the customer. And one that employs quality analytics to take an enterprise view of quality and achieve quality excellence.
Quality is rewarding
Companies like Sub-Zero recognized the opportunity with analytics over a decade ago. Not only did they significantly reduce their time to detection and overall warranty costs, they’ve risen to the top of the JD Power rankings.