As consumers become more cognizant of where their products are made, corporations are weighing the pros and cons of outsourcing manufacturing versus keeping the process domestic. Many people think that the most important reason to commit to “buying American” is to stimulate our economy.
However, outside of the growth of the economy, “reshoring” is becoming particularly attractive for businesses by proving to be economically sound and logistically easier than having manufacturing facilities overseas. Companies are beginning to consider these lesser-known, but equally important reasons to have their goods Made in the USA.
Over the past few years many companies have made the move to relocate manufacturing jobs back stateside. Investments in advanced automation technology in the US offer opportunities to develop a variety of products, from household goods, such as toasters and vacuum cleaners, to things once thought too expensive to build domestically like furniture and even textiles.
Though it may sound odd, reports indicate it is becoming more cost-effective to bring manufacturing back to the United States. Wages have continually increased in China causing their raw cost advantage to decline. Coupled with the allure of increased local control over manufacturing processes and quality control, and reduced shipping costs, more and more businesses are seeing the economic benefits of returning to the US of A.
A supply-chain that spans oceans is more prone to disruptions when compared to a domestic system. The effects of the work slowdown on west coast ports brought this idea into stark relief. The recent “Made in America, Again” survey, conducted by Boston Consulting Group, indicated that 80% of respondents said that creating shorter supply-chains is a large consideration when contemplating reshoring production.
As the practice of outsourcing gained popularity, the number of jobs in America began to decrease significantly and unemployment began to rise. According to The Million Jobs Project, an initiative to create one million new American jobs, we as consumers have more power than we think to continue to increase the number of American jobs. In fact, economists say that if each American buys 5% more US made products we will be able to create one million new jobs, affording Americans great opportunities to work right here at home!
By buying American, you are not only creating jobs, but opening doors for skilled individuals to contribute to the production of products. According to the same BCG study, survey-takers responded that access to a skilled workforce was another main driver for bringing manufacturing back to the US.
Purchasing American made goods not only supports the US economy and could have a positive effect on our workforce, it also gives you the opportunity to connect with the skilled artisans and craftspeople who make the products we enjoy each and every day. Initiatives like the “Made Right Here” web series visit businesses across the country who are producing American-made products, giving consumers an inside look at the dedicated individuals who make some of the items we know and love.
As more and more Americans are making a conscious effort to support business that manufacture in the US, what are some other things businesses should consider when making production decisions?