3D printing helps in capacity management
3D printing helps businesses to have more elasticity in their capacity management process. The business is able to better manage business cycles with quick ramp ups and ramp downs.
Business cycles are part of the risks of doing business. Every industry has to go through the cycle of expansion ➔ peak ➔ contraction ➔ trough ➔ recovery. In some industries, cycles are gentle and infrequent. In other industries, there could be sharp and short business cycles.
When there is a downturn, businesses need to reduce their production. Downturns need management with lesser inventory. This prevents inventory piling.
The inverse is also true. When there is an upturn, businesses need to expand their production capacity fast. This will help them to meet the demand. When demand rises, higher inventory will help to meet such demand. This will result in profit maximization.
Apart from industry cycles, seasonal trends can also influence product demand. Demand can be high during some parts of the year. Demand could go down in other parts of the year. This calls for dynamic management of production capacity. Production needs to be in sync with market trends.
Industry cycles can dictate quick ramp ups and ramp downs. If capacity utilization has better management, it will result in optimal usage of resources. This will help in reducing costs related to inventory carrying, distribution, transport, and warehousing.
3D printing can help to achieve capacity management.
When 3D printing is combined with traditional manufacturing, it helps to mitigate risks. Where there is a quick upturn, 3D printing can augment traditional manufacturing and push products into the market. At times when production needs to be trimmed, 3D printing capacity can be innovatively used for exploring niche markets that the company would normally shy away from.
Downturns can be daunting. Production capacity remains idle. 3D printing helps capacity management of downturns with print-on-demand.