May 16, 2020

Nissan set to spend $213mn to develop new Navara model

Nissan
South Africa
Manufacturing
Automotive
Sean Galea-Pace
1 min
Nissan’s South African division will invest around $213mn to equip its local plant and develop the firm’s new Navara model, Reuters reports.

With t...

Nissan’s South African division will invest around $213mn to equip its local plant and develop the firm’s new Navara model, Reuters reports.

With the capacity at Nissan’s plant in Rosslyn, close to Pretoria, set to rise by 30,000 units during the first phase, the number of the plant’s staff will rise by around 400, according to Mike Whitfield, managing director at Nissan South Africa.

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Speaking at an event to confirm the investment, Whitfield said: “Today, we’re able to announce that the Nissan South Africa Rosslyn facility will build the entire model range Nissan Navara for both local and export (markets).”

According to Whitfield, the South African unit had to fend off competition in order to be granted the right to produce the Navara. South African President Cyril Ramaphosa is aiming to secure $100bn in investment in the country within the next five years.

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May 12, 2021

Gartner: Leaders Lack Skilled Smart Manufacturing Workers

SmartManufacturing
DigitalTransformation
DigitalFactory
ConnectedFactory
2 min
57% of manufacturing leaders feel that their organisations lack the skilled workers needed to support smart manufacturing digitalisation

With organisations rapidly adopting industry 4.0 capabilities to increase productivity, efficiency, transparency, and quality as well as reduce cost, manufacturers “are under pressure to bring their workforce into the 21st century,” says Gartner.

While more connected factory workers are leveraging digital tools and data management techniques to improve decision accuracy, increase knowledge and lessen variability, 57% of manufacturing leaders feel that their organisations lack the skilled workers needed to support their smart manufacturing digitalisation plans.

“Our survey revealed that manufacturers are currently going through a difficult phase in their digitisation journey toward smart manufacturing,” said Simon Jacobson, Vice President analyst, Gartner Supply Chain practice.

“They accept that changing from a break-fix mentality and culture to a data-driven workforce is a must. However, intuition, efficiency and engagement cannot be sacrificed. New workers might be tech-savvy but lack access to best practices and know-how — and tenured workers might have the knowledge, but not the digital skills. A truly connected factory worker in a smart manufacturing environment needs both.”

Change Management

Surveying 439 respondents from North America, Western Europe and APAC, Gartner found that “organisational complexity, integration and process reengineering are the most prevalent challenges for executing smart manufacturing initiatives.” Combined they represent “the largest change management obstacle [for manufacturers],” adds Gartner.

“It’s interesting to see that leadership commitment is frequently cited as not being a challenge. Across all respondents, 83% agree that their leadership understands and accepts the need to invest in smart manufacturing. However, it does not reflect whether or not the majority of leaders understand the magnitude of change in front of them – regarding technology, as well as talent,” added Jacobson.

Technology and People

While the value and opportunities smart manufacturing can provide an organisation is being recognised, introducing technology alone isn’t enough. Gartner emphasises the importance of evolving factory workers alongside the technology, ensuring that they are on board in order for the change to be successful.

“The most immediate action is for organisations to realize that this is more than digitisation. It requires synchronising activities for capability building, capability enablement and empowering people. Taking a ‘how to improve a day in the life’ approach will increase engagement, continuous learning and ultimately foster a pull-based approach that will attract tenured workers. They are the best points of contact to identify the best starting points for automation and the required data and digital tools for better decision-making,” said Jacobson.

Long term, “it is important to establish a data-driven culture in manufacturing operations that is rooted in governance and training - without stifling employee creativity and ingenuity,” concluded Gartner.

Discover Gartner's Five Best Practices for Post COVID-19 Innovation' in manufacturing.

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