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What the recession means for your manufacturing plant

It's no secret that the current state of the economy has had a negative effect on many businesses. Manufacturing plants are not immune to this. The auto industry, for example, has taken a big hit as a result of the economy, with new car sales plummeting and many workers being laid off from car manufacturing plants across the country.

But how will your manufacturing plant be affected? The following are some of the things the recession means for your manufacturing plant, and what you can do to keep your business up, running, and successful.

What the recession means for your manufacturing plant
The recession often means that consumers, whether they are customers in a grocery store or companies that purchase large orders from your manufacturing plant, are going to great lengths to save money and cut back on spending in all areas. More often than not, this means that at least some business will be lost.

The recession also may mean that you will have to put a hold on hiring new employees. It may also mean that you will have to let go of some, or cut hours down. This is the last thing you will want to do as a manager, but in a recession it is often reality.

What you can do
As a manager, if you are seeing a loss of profit and customers in your manufacturing business, you may have to make some tough calls in order to keep the plant afloat. Some of the things you can do in a recession include:

Cut back on expenses.

When you have less cash coming in, it's only logical that you will want to decrease the amount of money you are spending each week, month, or quarter. Go through your manufacturing plant's expense sheet and look where you can cut costs. Start first with the non-critical costs, the things that are nice to have but aren't crucial to keep your business running. This could be travel, company sponsored parties, donations, and so forth.

Restructure shifts
In manufacturing, the goal is always to cut waste. In some cases, this may mean cutting certain shifts. If the demand for product isn't there, you won't need as large of a crew to meet production requests. Cutting shifts may be required to keep your plan afloat until the recession has passed.

Layoffs may also be necessary-again, if the demand for product isn't there, you won't need as many people on hand. Before you begin laying off, however, look for alternatives, such as cutting hours.

Consider cutting training costs
Training new employees is costly. Ongoing training is also expensive. While some of this type of training is necessary for safety and product quality, some of it can be considered extra expenses.

Things not to skimp on.
In a recession, people sometimes panic and, in an effort to save money, will cut things that are necessary. Make sure you don't put off maintenance, whether it is regularly scheduled upkeep or major maintenance to repair machines or keep them running smoothly. It is safer and less expensive in the long run to keep up with maintenance.

The recession has had a big impact on many aspects of manufacturing. The above are some of the ways you may be affected by the recession, and what you can do to weather the current economic storm.

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