Manufacturing SMEs are embracing futuremap™

David Chuter presenting futuremap™ at the Geelong Manufacturing Council.

A unique opportunity to think about your business

As digital technologies and new business models continue to disrupt the Australian manufacturing sector, more SME manufacturers recognise the need to be proactive and welcome the opportunity to assess how well their company is placed to start their digital transformation.

Since the launch of futuremap™ – a business diagnostic tool designed specifically for Australian manufacturing SMEs – at National Manufacturing Week, IMCRC has hosted fifteen successful workshops, with many in collaboration with the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre and the Entrepreneurs’ Programme in Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland and South Australia.

The workshops, attracting an average of 20 manufacturers each time, challenge participating businesses to take an honest look at their current capabilities in areas such as strategy, leadership, innovation and digital manufacturing and prompt them to consider their future aspirations.

Being asked a series of questions and reflecting on statements as, for example, “Our business has a strategy in place to protect the uniqueness of our products, processes and/or business models”, each manufacturer self-assess their current position against where they anticipate the business to be in two years’ time. futuremap™ then takes the answers and visualises, both, their current and aspired position in form of a spider diagram, identifying areas of focus and potential investment. Manufacturers thus not only become aware of the systems or processes they may need to improve to digitally transform their business but also learn on which current strengths they can rely on to achieve that goal.

Intended to spark a different way of thinking, the futuremap™ workshop also connects manufacturers with a broader support system that can help them start their digital transformation journey.

Feedback from Manufacturing SMEs

After the workshops, we asked participating companies what they thought about futuremap™, if it made them think differently and how that might impact their business.

“futuremap™ is a great tool to initiate new thinking about our business.” David Hart, Dematec Automation

“futuremap™ is very helpful. It forces you to consider all the different areas of your manufacturing business for transformation.” David Fox, L&A Pressure Welding Pty Ltd

“futuremap™ forced me to look into my business from the outside. It identified gaps and areas of focus. It also offered insight as to what the future business world might look like.” Mike Hamilton, Fullhammer Pty Ltd