Efficiency: this manufacturing buzzword means both everything and nothing.
It’s the “how” response to the pressures facing the global furniture industry: a more demanding consumer who expects more choice and faster delivery yet still bases purchasing decisions on price, and a dematerialized online shopping environment that actually emboldens these high expectations. The only way furniture companies can remain competitive is to produce faster and at a lower cost than ever before. They need (drum roll...) efficiency. This translates to minimizing, if not completely eliminating, all production disruptions. Stop-start dynamics due to an unsteady flow of data and information as well as unplanned and emergency maintenance no longer have a reason to exist in production.
As costs and timeframes have been squeezed to their limit, a new challenge has emerged: companies are forced to produce a wider range of items to satisfy a new consumer who seeks trend-based pieces and a more personalized shopping experience, articulated through customization, options and choice. Trends, seasonal collections, and made-to-order options are key for brands to stay relevant and engage the new consumer—it also adds an overwhelming layer of complexity to the manufacturing process. This e-guide, written by furniture experts for furniture experts, explores manufacturing challenges, their solutions, and the metrics that can be used to measure performance, with the objective of confronting this more globalized, competitive market.