REBUILDING AND RESHORING: CONCLUSION
The United States has been the leading economic, technological, and military power since WWII, but today the country faces the increased threat of China’s growing global influence. At the same time, there are challenges here at home, including a skilled workforce gap, low productivity growth, an overvalued dollar, and a massive trade deficit that must be addressed. A stronger manufacturing sector is critical for the United States to solve these challenges by providing good wages, advanced manufacturing technology, tax revenue, unparalleled defense material, and confidence in our future.
In this series conclusion, I summarize the actions needed to secure U.S. leadership in innovation and manufacturing, bolster competitiveness, and strengthen economic and national security. Rebuilding the United States supply chain starts now.
Growing U.S. manufacturing
Reestablishing domestic supply chains requires growing manufacturing, which requires reshoring. At a constant level of goods consumption, the only way to grow manufacturing is by exporting more or importing less. As we have shown, in an earlier article from this series, importing less, i.e., reshoring, is far easier.
That’s not to say we should discontinue efforts to expand overseas markets for American products. However, sourcing domestically avoids the approximately 15% in cost or “friction” associated with importing or exporting. U.S. products are, on average, about 30% more competitive here vs. imports, as opposed to when we export to an overseas market like Asia.
Key factors for manufacturing strength
Four actions are essential for success.
Build the Skilled Workforce: Develop a skilled workforce with the quality and quantity similar to Germany. German wages are comparable to U.S. wages, but Germany has a trade surplus of 5% of GDP vs. the U.S. trade deficit of almost 4%. German skilled trades and engineering are the key difference. It is essential that the United States have a sufficient number of workers with the skill-level necessary to provide the 40% capacity increase and to use the most modern equipment to achieve the required cost competitiveness and quality. This factor is the sine qua non of reshoring and rebuilding.
Increase Productivity: U.S. productivity growth has averaged less than 1% per year for 10 years vs. China’s 6%. To become competitive and provide the wage and tech level required to attract the needed workforce, we need significant investments in automation and workforce by manufacturers and government.
Ensure a competitive U.S. dollar: The U.S. dollar is 20 – 30% overvalued. Having the reserve currency is a blessing for cheap debt but a curse for manufacturing.
Use Total Cost of Ownership (TCO): If all companies and governments sourced using TCO instead of 外贸论坛 price or “landed cost”, about 20% of imports would be replaced with domestically produced goods, increasing U.S. manufacturing by 20% and cutting the trade deficit by 50%.
These factors reinforce each other. A lower U.S. dollar makes manufacturing more competitive, increases work at factories enabling investment, and improves recruiting. Productivity enables higher wages and exciting, advanced technology jobs. TCO helps companies see that the cost difference between domestic and imported goods is small enough to provide a high return on investment when reshoring.
The COVID-19 pandemic revealed brittle, hyper-connected global supply chains. Companies with local supply chains fared better against the disruption. The vulnerabilities from 40 years of hollowing out U.S. manufacturing and the resulting over-dependence on imports were exposed. Americans are now especially aware of our over-dependence on imports of medical products and pharmaceuticals.
New tariffs and the COVID-19 crisis caused supply-chain disruptions of national security-sensitive and critical components, like semiconductor chips — used in everything from computer, automotive, and electronics manufacturing, critical military and defense technology, and everyday consumer products like smartphones, televisions, and washing machines. The time is right for companies to adapt to a world in which heavy dependence on worldwide supply chains is no longer the key to profitability, much less survival. The Reshoring Initiative’s resources can help you prepare.
Setting a goal for success
Eliminating the $900 billion trade deficit will result in a 40% increase in manufacturing, engaging five million more manufacturing employees. The United States needs to double or triple the current 150,000 jobs per year rate of reshoring and foreign direct investment (FDI) to achieve the goal in 20 to 30 years.
All segments of society must reengage, including government, educators, consumers, OEMs, contract manufacturers, technology suppliers, retailers, and communities. Companies must rethink sourcing metrics by universal and consistent use of TCO instead of 外贸论坛 or FCA price or landed cost. Implementing an aggressive industrial policy, driving innovation, and aligning education and training with “new collar” jobs is central to global competitiveness.
Benefits of reshoring
Growing U.S. manufacturing and boosting competitiveness will produce societal, environmental, and economic success. Reshoring will bring to urban communities well-paying jobs and reintroduce good job opportunities into rural areas. Both are critical factors in achieving economic equity. Manufacturing goods far away from their ultimate sale-and-use location results in commensurately higher transportation-related emissions. Less shipping reduces the global quantity and types of packaging and its associated waste. Increasing well-paying manufacturing jobs in the United States can be a critical factor in supporting recovery from COVID-19 pandemic-induced unemployment. More tax revenue from greater economic activity will help offset spending on stimulus programs and reduce budget deficits.
TCO: Quantifying relevant factors and costs
Localization (producing near the consumer) often reduces total cost by shortening supply chains and contributing to a lean and agile strategy. The savings on non-manufacturing costs as a result of producing in the market in which the products will be sold can often overcome a 15-20% manufacturing cost gap caused by an 80% wage gap. Using TCO instead of manufacturing cost or 外贸论坛 price when making siting and sourcing decisions is the best way to recognize these savings. (See TCO Part 1 and Part 2)
The Reshoring Initiative’s TCO Estimator is a free online tool that helps companies account for all relevant factors to compare the true total cost of domestic and offshore sourcing and factory siting. Using the TCO metric, companies can uncover the easily ignored hidden costs and risks of offshoring, reducing the apparent competitiveness gap. Minimizing costs with sustainable lean strategies, product optimization, and automation further reduces the gap, enabling companies to unleash the power of “local for local.”
When you find yourself competing with a lower-priced offshore product, we suggest offering to help the customer compare the TCO of your price offer vs. the lower-priced offshore offer. We suggest starting with the offshore-sourced product(s) that are causing the customer problems such as delivery, quality, IP, inventory, lost orders, travel, and so on.
Skilled workforce development and U.S. competitiveness
Skilled workforce development is one competitiveness factor over which we can have complete control.
Training for new-collar jobs
As manufacturers increase competitiveness with automation and other digital technologies, the workforce will need comprehensive training and corresponding skills to interact and grow. Rapidly changing technologies demand that new-collar workers develop skills through nontraditional educational paths, including community colleges, vocational schools, software boot camps, technical certification programs, high-school technical education, on-the-job apprenticeships, and internships, as opposed to a four-year university degree. Manufacturers must incorporate lifelong learning into their business plans to develop the future workforce and keep up with developing technologies.
Workforce development solutions
We recommend creating a strong K-12 education focused on math and science as well as offering “vocational” (or, as we prefer to say, “professional”) programs in all high schools. Tactics to help:
Coordinate with businesses to generate internships.
Encourage STEM studies and programs that prepare young people for advanced manufacturing careers that require high-tech skills, such as programming, engineering, and digital competencies.
Work closely with local manufacturers to develop needed skills.
Develop a workforce that has the skillsets to operate, maintain, and repair the automated equipment that will power new production processes.
It’s imperative that the government, industry, and academia come up with ways to recruit above-average high school students to manufacturing, and convince more smart high school students to choose apprenticeships instead of four-year university degrees. The Reshoring Initiative supports: industry-recognized credentials, notably credentials by NIMS for our industry’s key, in-demand functions; CTE program development; and AMT – the Association for Manufacturing Technology’s Manufacturing Mandate. The JOBS Act bill currently in Congress would make federal financial aid available for skills training.
Reevaluate and Reengage
Although there are continuing concerns regarding China’s industrial policies, the United States has limited control over China’s initiatives. However, we have unlimited control over our competitiveness initiatives and our ability to achieve our ambitions. Let’s collaborate to support American competitiveness and rebuild a U.S. manufacturing powerhouse.
I would like to thank the folks at AMT and the IMTS community for the opportunity to explore reshoring in depth. I want to especially thank Sandy Montalbano, consultant to the Reshoring Initiative, for her key role in producing this series. Rebuilding the U.S. supply chain starts now.
这并不是说我们应该停止为美国产品拓展海外市场的努力。然而，在国内采购可以避免大约 15% 的成本或与进出口相关的“摩擦”。与我们出口到亚洲等海外市场时相比，美国产品在这里的竞争力平均比进口产品高 30%。
建设熟练劳动力：培养质量和数量与德国相似的熟练劳动力。德国的工资与美国的工资相当，但德国的贸易顺差占 GDP 的 5%，而美国的贸易逆差接近 4%。德国的技术行业和工程是关键的区别。美国必须拥有足够数量的具备必要技能水平的工人，以提供 40% 的产能增长，并使用最现代化的设备来实现所需的成本竞争力和质量。这个因素是回流和重建的必要条件。
提高生产力：美国的生产力增长率在 10 年中平均每年不到 1%，而中国为 6%。为了提高竞争力并提供吸引所需劳动力所需的工资和技术水平，我们需要制造商和政府对自动化和劳动力进行大量投资。
确保有竞争力的美元：美元被高估了 20 – 30%。拥有储备货币对廉价债务是一种祝福，但对制造业是一种诅咒。
使用总拥有成本 (TCO)：如果所有公司和政府都使用 TCO 而不是 外贸论坛 价格或“到岸成本”采购，大约 20% 的进口将被国内生产的商品取代，美国制造业增加 20% 并减少贸易赤字 50%。
这些因素相辅相成。美元贬值使制造业更具竞争力，增加了工厂的工作量，促进了投资，并改善了招聘。生产力可以带来更高的工资和令人兴奋的先进技术工作。 TCO 帮助企业看到国内商品和进口商品之间的成本差异小到足以在回流时提供高投资回报。
COVID-19 大流行揭示了脆弱、高度连接的全球供应链。拥有本地供应链的公司在应对中断方面表现更好。 40 年来空心化美国制造业以及由此导致的过度依赖进口的脆弱性暴露无遗。美国人现在特别意识到我们过度依赖医疗产品和药品的进口。
新关税和 COVID-19 危机导致国家安全敏感和关键部件（如半导体芯片）的供应链中断，这些部件用于计算机、汽车和电子制造、关键军事和国防技术以及智能手机等日常消费品、电视和洗衣机。现在是公司适应一个严重依赖全球供应链不再是盈利关键的世界的时候了，更不用说生存了。 Reshoring Initiative 的资源可以帮助您做好准备。
消除 9000 亿美元的贸易逆差将使制造业增长 40%，并增加 500 万制造业员工。美国需要将目前每年 150,000 个工作岗位的回流和外国直接投资 (FDI) 增加一倍或三倍，才能在 20 到 30 年内实现这一目标。
社会的所有部门都必须重新参与，包括政府、教育工、消费者、原始设备制造商、合同制造商、技术供应商、零售商和社区。公司必须通过普遍和一致地使用 TCO 而不是 外贸论坛 或 FCA 价格或到岸成本来重新考虑采购指标。实施积极的产业政策、推动创新以及将教育和培训与“新领”工作相结合是全球竞争力的核心。
发展美国制造业和提高竞争力将带来社会、环境和经济上的成功。回流将为城市社区带来高薪工作，并将良好的工作机会重新引入农村地区。两者都是实现经济公平的关键因素。在远离最终销售和使用地点的地方制造商品会导致与运输相关的排放量相应增加。更少的运输减少了全球包装的数量和类型以及相关的浪费。在美国增加高薪制造业工作可能是支持从 COVID-19 大流行引起的失业中复苏的关键因素。来自更大经济活动的更多税收将有助于抵消刺激计划的支出并减少预算赤字。
本地化（在消费者附近生产）通常通过缩短供应链和促进精益和敏捷战略来降低总成本。由于在将要销售产品的市场上生产而节省的非制造成本通常可以克服由 80% 的工资差距造成的 15-20% 的制造成本差距。在进行选址和采购决策时使用 TCO 而不是制造成本或 外贸论坛 价格是认识到这些节省的最佳方式。 （参见 TCO 第 1 部分和第 2 部分）
Reshoring Initiative 的 TCO Estimator 是一个免费的在线工具，可帮助公司考虑所有相关因素，以比较国内和海外采购和工厂选址的真实总成本。使用 TCO 指标，公司可以发现容易被忽视的隐性成本和离岸外包风险，从而减少明显的竞争力差距。通过可持续的精益战略、产品优化和自动化将成本降至最低，进一步缩小了差距，使公司能够释放“本地化本地化”的力量。
我们建议创建一个以数学和科学为重点的强大的 K-12 教育，并在所有高中提供“职业”（或者，我们更愿意说，“专业”）课程。帮助策略：
鼓励 STEM 研究和计划，帮助年轻人为需要高科技技能（如编程、工程和数字能力）的先进制造职业做好准备。
政府、工业界和学术界必须想出办法，将高于平均水平的高中生招入制造业，并说服更多聪明的高中生选择学徒制，而不是四年制大学学位。 Reshoring Initiative 支持： 行业认可的证书，特别是 NIMS 的证书，用于我们行业的关键需求功能； CTE程序开发；和 AMT——制造技术协会的制造任务。目前在国会通过的《就业法案》法案将使联邦财政援助可用于技能培训。
我要感谢 AMT 和 IMTS 社区的人们有机会深入探索回流。我要特别感谢 Reshoring Initiative 的顾问 Sandy Montalbano，她在制作这个系列中发挥了关键作用。重建美国供应链现在开始。知己知彼 方能百战百胜，以下可以找到它们的系列文章