Consumer brand manufacturers face a litany of challenges, not the least of which are supply chain distribution companies and a softer economy.
But a new survey of consumer brand manufacturers from Rockwell Automation shows that CEOs are counting on digital technology and transformation processes to solve challenges, gain efficiency and improve sales.
“The consumer packaged goods industry has been hit hard by a perfect storm of challenges over the last year, with disruptions in the supply chain, a shortage of workers, and inflation all contributing to a dramatic impact on businesses,” says Lee Coffey, global strategic marketing manager, consumer packaged goods, Rockwell Automation. “Adapting to these changes requires agility, innovation, and a willingness to embrace new ways of working to survive and thrive in these uncertain times.”
Technology is increasingly being seen as the answer to many of the challenges CPG leaders face, Rockwell says. The single most common way CPG leaders are mitigating risk — both internally and externally — is by adopting innovative technology, according to the survey of 216 CPG manufacturers across 13 countries.
Specific findings include:
- 52% of CPG manufacturers see inflation as their biggest external obstacle in 2023.
- 42% of businesses are accelerating their digital transformation to keep pace with competitors, while 44% are doing so to improve quality.
- On average, businesses in CPG invest just over one-fifth of their operating budget on technology, with the top three investments in cloud technology (45%), supply chain planning (42%), and cybersecurity (41%).
- 57% of businesses are using software to automate processes and 63% are using it to better track corporate data. Notably, 48% of leaders are increasing process automation to address labor shortages.
- 90% of CPG manufacturers believe they will maintain or increase the size of their workforce because of technology, with 38% expecting to repurpose their existing workforce and 29% assuming they will hire more workers due to technology adoption.
- In practice, 31% of CPG manufacturers report smart manufacturing initiatives have helped deal with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and keep pace with market transformations.
“Technology is increasingly being seen as the answer to many of the challenges CPG leaders face,” Rockwell says. “The single most common way CPG leaders are mitigating risk — both internally and externally — is by adopting new technology.”
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