Rockwell Automation Study Reports 44% of Consumer Packaged Goods Leaders Accelerate Digital Transformation to Improve Quality

Global survey reveals the top challenges and opportunities of new technology for the global consumer packaged goods (CPG) industry, with focuses on navigating inflation, supply chain disruptions, and more

Rockwell Automation, Inc., the world’s largest company dedicated to industrial automation and digital transformation, today announced the results of the 8th annual “State of Smart Manufacturing: CPG Edition”. The global study encompasses the responses of 216 CPG leaders across 13 of the leading manufacturing countries.

This year’s report emphasizes the evolution of the CPG industry, inclusive of home and personal care, as well as food and beverage manufacturers, specifically about balancing quality and profitable growth, the impact of process automation, the adoption of smart manufacturing, and the essential role of technology when mitigating risks, improving quality, keeping up with competitors, and maintaining business continuity.

Key global findings include:

  • 52% of CPG manufacturers see inflation as their biggest external obstacle in 2023.
  • 42% of businesses are accelerating their digital transformation to keep pace with competitors, while 44% are doing so to improve quality.
  • On average, businesses in CPG invest just over one-fifth of their operating budget on technology with the top three investments in cloud technology (45%), supply chain planning (42%), and cybersecurity (41%).
  • 57% of businesses are using software to automate processes and 63% are using it to better track corporate data. Notably, 48% of leaders are increasing process automation to address labor shortages.
  • 90% of CPG manufacturers believe they will maintain or increase the size of their workforce as a result of technology, with 38% expecting to repurpose their existing workforce and 29% assuming they’ll hire more workers due to technology adoption.
  • In practice, 31% of CPG manufacturers report smart manufacturing initiatives have helped deal with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and keep pace with market transformations. Additionally, 28% report smart manufacturing is helping them mitigate cybersecurity risks.
  • 95% of CPG manufacturers have ESG initiatives in place, with 44% pursuing sustainability and ESG initiatives as a competitive differentiator.

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“The CPG industry has been hit hard by a perfect storm of challenges over the last year, with disruptions in the supply chain, a shortage of workers, and inflation all contributing to a dramatic impact on businesses,” said Lee Coffey, strategic marketing manager – consumer packaged goods, Rockwell Automation. “Adapting to these changes requires agility, innovation, and a willingness to embrace new ways of working to survive and thrive in these uncertain times.”

Technology is increasingly being seen as the answer to many of the challenges CPG leaders face. The single most common way CPG leaders are mitigating risk – both internally and externally – is by adopting new technology.

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“Rockwell understands the CPG industry is constantly evolving, and we are committed to providing companies around the world with the expertise and solutions they need to succeed,” said Coffey. “With our dynamic portfolio of industry solutions and extensive partner ecosystem, we are uniquely positioned to serve as a trusted advisor in this space. Whether companies are just starting their digital transformation journey or are already advanced in smart manufacturing, Rockwell can meet them where they are and help drive innovative growth that delivers real results.”

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