Navigating Manufacturing Challenges with the TIDC

Ryan Spurr

Manufacturing teams require better technology delivery. They are being asked to manage costs, drive growth, and deliver operational excellence in a world full of evolving market challenges. Costs are increasing, supply chain disruptions are common, and technology is rapidly changing.

Adding to the complexity is an evolving workforce of distributed workers, high turnover, and a need to attract the right talent. It’s never been more important for manufacturing organizations to rethink their IT service delivery models and how they align to support business operations, growth, and workforce optimization.

Our Technology Integration and Distribution Center (TIDC) can help manufacturing organizations invest in automation, technology modernization, and leverage our deep technology experience to reduce costs, improve efficiency, and free up IT staff to focus on more strategic initiatives.

Three Key Challenges in Manufacturing

Manufacturing IT teams face a multitude of challenges. Whether it’s dealing with disruptive initiatives, line of business expectations, or the struggle to hire and retain competent talent, the TIDC is well-equipped to assist.

1. Disruptive Initiatives: Central to a manufacturing organization’s growth strategy are disruptive initiatives, such as constructing new facilities, expanding existing ones, or securing new locations. These endeavors significantly impact IT organizations, facilities, and intersecting functions, often imposing a considerable burden on IT to ensure successful execution.

The TIDC plays a vital role in facilitating the seamless development of both facility and IT infrastructure. By providing essential support, The TIDC allows IT organizations to concentrate on meeting business objectives and optimizing operational efficiency.

2. Line of Business Expectations: There’s a shift in the expectations of IT. Workers need the right tools, software, and configurations promptly to enhance productivity. The days of waiting weeks for improperly configured technology are long gone. Manufacturing organizations need the right technology solutions, quick deployment, and ongoing support to meet employee expectations and stay agile.

The TIDC plays a crucial role in delivering the right tools at the right time, freeing up IT staff to focus on more strategic initiatives.

3. Talent Acquisition and Retention: The universal challenge of hiring and retaining skilled talent reverberates across industries, with manufacturing being no exception. An alarming number of companies struggle to secure qualified IT workers.

The right workforce is indispensable for successful business execution, spanning engineers, knowledge workers, and operational roles. Our TIDC steps in by providing the necessary technology solutions, skill sets, and processes to fortify IT teams. Collaborating with our TIDC enables manufacturing organizations to align their IT operations with expectations while focusing on attracting and retaining top-tier talent.

Meeting Manufacturing Challenges with the TIDC

With a recent expansion and investment in infrastructure to double our capacity, the TIDC has the capability to act as an extension of customers’ IT departments, offering a range of services, from provisioning and deployment to logistics and asset management.

These are some of the top tactical solutions that the TIDC currently provides manufacturers:

  1. Windows 11 Migration: With the end of life for Windows 10 approaching, the TIDC helps manufacturers navigate the migration to Windows 11 seamlessly. We can assist in analyzing hardware compatibility, provisioning, deployment, and security enhancements. By relying on the TIDC’s expertise, manufacturing organizations can ensure a smooth transition without disrupting their operations.
  1. Factory in a Box: The TIDC offers a unique solution known as “Factory in a Box.” When a manufacturing organization requires equipment for a new facility, expansion, or refresh, the TIDC delivers everything pre-provisioned and ready to use. This includes laptops, desktops, tablets, printers, networking equipment, and more.

    Recognizing that people are manufacturers’ most important asset, especially in today’s tight labor market where manufacturers struggle to find qualified workers, it’s essential to meet employees’ high technological expectations. Whether your IT team delivers endpoints to new employees or replaces an existing device, it’s important to get technology right every time to ensure manufacturers can attract, retain, and optimize the productivity of their talent pool.

    Choosing Connection’s Factory in a Box solution guarantees that your equipment undergoes provisioning, testing, validation, and secure packaging before reaching your site. Opting for a single-source vendor ensures timely delivery, making all your products ready for implementation on the scheduled day. This minimizes downtime and decreases the need for hands-on work on-site. The elimination of installation and setup time not only reduces operational downtime and costs but also enables IT teams to concentrate on other critical tasks.
  1. Depot Services and IT Asset Disposal: The TIDC’s depot services help manufacturers minimize downtime by providing advanced exchange solutions. In case of equipment failures, the TIDC can quickly ship pre-provisioned replacement devices.

    Additionally, the TIDC offers IT asset disposal services, ensuring proper disposal or recycling of old equipment. Manufacturers can utilize these services to manage the end-of-life process efficiently and potentially receive credits towards new equipment.

Remove Stress from Manufacturing Technology Projects

Modern manufacturers must continually adapt, modernize, or transform their facilities to enhance operations. To do so, they rely on a wide array of IT components, including computers, mobility solutions, kiosks, digital signage, edge devices and data centers, networking infrastructure, cameras, IoT sensors, and more.

However, the challenges of staffing, disruptive initiatives, and the shift in line of business expectations can make it challenging to ensure that IT delivers technology punctually, at the right location, and within budget.

Our TIDC is dedicated to ensuring manufacturers experience seamless technology delivery. By leveraging the TIDC’s profound expertise, manufacturers can achieve cost reduction, efficiency improvement, and the liberation of IT staff for strategic initiatives.

Take that next step to improve how you deliver technology to your valued employees in support of major initiatives. Engage Connection’s Manufacturing Practice today!

Ryan Spurr is the Director of Manufacturing Strategy at Connection with 20+ years of experience in manufacturing, information technology, and portfolio leadership. He leads the Connection Manufacturing Practice, go-to-market strategy, client engagement, and advisory services focusing on operational technology (OT) and information technology that make manufacturers more digitally excellent.