Manifacturing, HR Global Trend 2023

Digital transformation as a strategy to overcome modern crises in Manufacturing

The global situation triggered by COVID-19, conflict in Ukraine, rising inflation and the shortage of raw materials is pushing the manufacturing industry to adopt new technologies.
In recent research, conducted in Brazil, China, Germany, Italy, Poland, and the United Kingdom, we asked HR managers, plant managers and production managers about the challenges and opportunities of the 4th industrial revolution.




of companies
have introduced Smart Factory technologies

16.4 T$

global value of Manufacturing




of companies
believe professional profiles will change



of companies
report difficulties finding specialized workers


Smart Factory

Increased automation, and data to drive efficiency

Results of our recent research show that 84% of companies have already implemented some digital solutions. The most common are cloud computing, digital integration, big data analytics and cybersecurity.
These numbers will continue to rise, with 22% of respondents indicating they will definitely implement new digital technologies in the next five years and 63% saying they probably will.

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Economic Growth

Continued growth and optimism

Representing 17% of the global Gross Domestic Product, Manufacturing plays a central role in greater society, creating demand in many other sectors. Despite worldwide economic instability the industry continues to grow - market value in 2021 was 16.4 trillion U.S. dollars, 21% more than in 2020.
Experts believe this will continue and signal automation and sustainability as key issues for the future.

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New profiles

Problem solvers and team leaders

85% of companies believe that the professional profiles required in Manufacturing will change in the coming years.
Specifically, 71% believe they will mainly need digital and project management skills.
Professional roles in factories often involve management or supervisory responsibilities, so these prioritisation, decision-making and problem-solving skills are often needed together with the right retention incentives - more often work-life balance and higher salaries.

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Labour shortage

A move away from physical labour to attract a diverse workforce

66% of companies reported difficulties in finding specialised workers, although this is less acute for white-collar positions because the transition from other industries is easier than for blue-collar workers.
The gender gap in Manufacturing is the smallest in white-collar roles, and the changing attitudes and skills required should continue to attract more women.
In general Manufacturing suffers from the traditional misconception that it involves manual, low-skilled work.

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What to expect from Manufacturing in the future?
Read more in the full report