The annual Manufacturing Indaba provides a platform for international and local industry players in manufacturing to discuss challenges and to share examples and solutions. Some of the 2017 Manufacturing Indaba conference discussions focused on supporting local industry and creating a demand for local goods, contributing to the manufacturing value chain, skills improvement, and initiatives that can assist in moving Africa towards a more advanced manufacturing industry.
Topics and insights from the previous event forms the foundation of the critical themes for the upcoming 2018 Manufacturing Indaba, which has the overarching event theme of “Manufacturing our Future”. Some key points on the required factors for success and the challenges to overcome, as highlighted at the 2017 conference, include:
FACTORS FOR SUCCESS
- Reinforcing the culture of entrepreneurship and innovation, supported by expertise
- Ongoing risk assessment, understanding the market and adapting to change
- Modern infrastructure: internet, access to new markets, advanced machinery and equipment, specialised and skilled employees
- Progress from a producer of raw materials (the smallest place in the value chain), to include value added activities
- High-impact, low-cost interventions (e.g. Pareto and fishbone analysis)
- Safe, environmentally compliant workplace
- Capable employees with continuously developing skills
- Incentive programmes and policies tailored to support industrial development
- Promoting greater inclusivity, more equitably spread and moving away from false empowerment
- Investing in business with high labour usage to preserve jobs
- Achieving greater coherence in localisation
- Becoming more EFFICIENT and more COMPETITIVE
SOME OF THE CHALLENGES IDENTIFIED
- Global challenges: low demand and investor confidence, lasting impact of 2008 financial crisis, oversupply in some sectors resulting in cut-throat pricing
- Impending uncertainty of the 4th industrial revolution and what impact this will have for manufacturers
- High unemployment rate
- Wages are increasing and productivity is falling
- Low levels of private sector investment due to the period of slow worldwide economic growth
- Domestic market not big enough; we need to be a trading economy. Some import opportunities have closed, but unlike China and India we cannot turn to our local markets
- Electricity costs are increasing above inflation
- Marginal effective tax rate is among the highest for manufacturing
- Skills shortages
- Inefficiencies in roads and infrastructure
Join us at Manufacturing Indaba 2018 to participate in the debate and to learn what
industry specialists say about Manufacturing our Future in Africa.
Visit our new website: www.manufacturingindaba.co.za to learn more about this prestigious event.
While South Africa continues to move towards a green trend when developing new buildings, the real test of sustainability begins on occupation. If a building is green, but its occupants are not, the trade-off will most likely lead to diluted sustainability results.
According to the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA): “Green building incorporates design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate the negative impact of development on the environment and people.
“Green buildings are energy efficient, resource efficient and environmentally responsible.”
But what happens when the janitorial staff use harsh chemicals to clean the workspaces, or eco-friendly practices are abandoned within the first year because they’re perceived to be too difficult to maintain?
Adopting green trends in your workplace
GreenTag certified local manufacturer, green cleaning consultant and CEO of Green Worx Cleaning Solutions, John J Coetzee, confirms that green consultants (also known as sustainability consultants) can play an instrumental role in keeping your building and its occupants green, aware of their impact, and worthy of their Green Star SA (or other) green rating.
Firstly, objective green consultants are able to identify hidden areas where sustainability is slipping, and conduct valuable audits.
“The right consultants will help businesses to improve their current sustainability score across the board – looking at all aspects of green, and not just what materials were used to build the building,” confirms Coetzee.
“Something that is often overlooked is the products utilised by the facilities’ management company. Chemicals damage the environment, and when they’re being used to clean an entire building, the effects are exponentially more damaging.
“Consultants should develop sustainable green cleaning programmes – and assist in their implementation. A properly implemented programme consolidates products, procedures and training, and features ongoing assessment.”
Hygienic work conditions
The second reason why green consultants are crucial is that they provide a measurement in terms of the health of your workplace (and your staff).
“Statistics show that 40% of all office workers are concerned that they may fall ill due to poor office hygiene.
“By focussing on maintaining green practices, human health and wellbeing will be positively affected, for both building users and workers,” adds Coetzee.
This positively affects productivity, decreasing downtime and improving the general office morale.
Nurturing the triple bottom line
Lastly, sustainability consulting (if done properly) will ensure that businesses save money and improve their profitability.
By limiting the use of precious resources, and using more effective methods, overheads can be decreased dramatically.
“Every business runs with the objective of making a profit. In the past, South African businesses have viewed sustainability as another expense – but this view is changing. The realisation that green is often more affordable allows businesses to continue making money, without compromising the environment to do so.”
Issued by Perfect Word Consulting with primary input from John J Coetzee, CEO, Green Worx Cleaning Solution