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Global study shows U.S. plants lag on capital spending

Although manufacturing plants around the world continue to operate well below capacity, nearly half of them plan to increase spending on capital equipment in the coming year.


International plants spent significantly more on capital upgrades than U.S.-based facilities in the past year—10 percent of plant revenue (median) compared to 3.1 percent (median) at U.S. plants. Further, the spending gap looks to continue through 2011, with 55 percent of international plants planning to increase capital spending, compared to 44 percent of U.S. plants.


The data comes from the just-released MPI Manufacturing Study, and is highlighted in the Manufacturing 2010/2011 Executive Summary. The annual study—a comprehensive survey of global manufacturing performance data—helps organizations to benchmark operations and find out how top-performers are achieving world-class results.


Founded in 1997, the study this year includes a comparison of U.S. facilities (334 plants) versus plants from around the world (145 plants)—vital in an era of increasingly global competition.


"This year we were able to increase the international sampling to allow comparisons between metrics in the U.S. and elsewhere," says John Brandt, CEO of The MPI Group. "Executives want to benchmark against the best performances and best practices around the world—not just in the United States. We're delighted to offer these hard-to-get metrics."


The study was conducted with support from Thomas International Publishing Co. and includes detailed information on practices and performance metrics for:
• Human resources measures, such as annual labor turnover rates.
• Operations ratios, such as sales per employee.
• Supply chain metrics, such as customer retention rates.
• Capacity/equipment/investment benchmarks, such as machine availability.
• Green/sustainability targets, such as percentage of recyclable/reusable products.


"There are hundreds of insights in the overall study findings, and the data also can be viewed on an industry-by-industry basis," Brandt says. "There's no substitute for competitive intelligence—and the Manufacturing Study offers a clear view of what it takes to survive and thrive in a challenging global environment."


The study is available in various formats:
• Manufacturing 2010/2011 Executive Summary: 28 pages for immediate download ($95)
• 2010/2011 Manufacturers Data Report: 250+ plus pages for immediate download ($295)
• 2010/2011 Global Benchmarking Toolkit: Online/interactive ($995)


Source: The MPI Group



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