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AI and 5G technology are leading disruption within UK manufacturing organisations

Over half (58%) of UK manufacturing organisations feel prepared for future change, with 70% stating that they have a strategy in place to navigate radical change ahead, according to Fujitsu’s ‘Driving a Trusted Future in a Radically Changing World’ report.

Over the past five years, an unsurprising 93% of manufacturing leaders said their organisation has experienced change, and a further 64% expect the pace of change to speed up over the next five. This feeling of change is present within manufacturing organisations themselves, as 72% of manufacturing leaders expect their own company to experience more change over the next five years than they have in the previous five.

The majority (92%) of manufacturing leaders feel positive about the change that they’ve been through already, with four in five (80%) leaders attributing technological innovation to having had a positive impact on their organisation.

When asked which technology is changing their organisation the most, manufacturers said AI (36%), followed by followed by 5G (30%) and 3D printing (29%).

However, manufacturers also signposted that they are worried their organisation could miss out on the benefits of these technological innovations because they haven’t planned effectively for it (37%).

Furthermore, manufacturers appear to be struggling with future looking at their organisation and the industry, as almost half (48%) admit they cannot predict what customers will want from their organisation over the next five years, or what their sector will look like in five years (40%).

Commenting on the results, Graeme Wright, CDO for Manufacturing and Utilities at Fujitsu UK&I said: “In today’s technology and business landscape many manufacturers face greater challenges than ever before. Yet in the face of this, manufacturing leaders remain optimistic about their future; even if they might be acutely aware of the speed of change that they are up against and can’t necessarily predict what this change will mean for the sector, or for their organisation.

“Ultimately, technology – like AI and 5G - will help them to chart their path and manufacturing leaders must ensure they are putting the right plans in place, so they can truly take advantage of the technology once it’s implemented. Only when they maximise the use of data, made available by the data technology provides, will they be able to genuinely improve productivity and the working day of employees and the services to their customers.”

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