Made Smarter publishes free digitisation guide for chemical manufacturers

Made Smarter, the government-backed programme designed to drive productivity and growth of manufacturing industries by putting the UK at the forefront of the fourth industrial revolution, has produced a free guide to help chemical manufacturers to adopt new digital technologies.

The Challenging World of Chemical Manufacturing guide includes topics such as how digital tools can help tackle key business challenges including: achieving consistent quality, complying with regulations, managing waste and pollution, identifying supply chain trends, and supporting production planning.

It has been produced by Made Smarter, which has already supported businesses to deliver an additional £176m in gross value added and create hundreds of new jobs, and is now keen to reach more chemical manufacturers to aid the growth of the North West’s £10bn chemical industry.

Made Smarter also gives access to impartial expert technology advice and match funding on technology projects, digital transformation workshops to help manufacturers take their first steps, a leadership programme, digital technology internships, and skills development.

Donna Edwards, North West adoption programme director at Made Smarter, said: “The North West is made up of hundreds of chemical makers who create a variety of products which impact virtually every aspect of our lives, such as soap, paint and fuel.

"The sector is adopting digital technologies at a faster rate than other sectors in a race to stay competitive, adapt to strict quality standards, compliance and reporting responsibilities, and reduce its environmental impact through waste and emissions.

"However, in highly regulated manufacturing, jumping feet first is very risky and upgrading to new technologies can seem like a complex and daunting task. To help demystify digitalisation and help SMEs to their first step, we have produced some crucial guidance as well as explained why implementing digital tools is such a priority in this sector."

Made Smarter is working in partnership with the Chemical Industries Association (CIA), the leading national trade association representing chemical and pharmaceutical companies.

Ian Cranshaw, head of regional affairs for the CIA, said: "The success of the Made Smarter Adoption Programme in the North West has demonstrated the value of targeted support for SME manufacturers to help them take those first steps on their digitalisation journeys.

“At the Chemical Industries Association we have been studying the impact and potential of digitisation for some time, having set out our latest thinking in our Digitisation in the Chemical Industry report. Investment in digital technologies for plants is increasing. However there are several key barriers preventing faster and more widespread adoption and in order to overcome these, we have urged the Government to implement the findings of the Made Smarter review.”

The guide is available to download free of charge by following this link.

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