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Made Smarter reaches milestone with GJD

by Andy Clutton

Mark Tibbenham, GJD Managing Director

Security manufacturer GJD has helped Made Smarter’s technology adoption programme mark its third anniversary to reach a major milestone.

Three years on from its launch, the government-funded and industry-led initiative helping SMEs drive growth and decarbonise through digitalisation, has now supported its 200th business.

Joining the manufacturers starting their journey to use technology to benefit their business, their bottom line and the environment is GJD Manufacturing, based in Heywood.  The company makes perimeter security and surveillance devices, and has invested in data and systems integration technology.

Mark Tibbenham, Managing Director, said: “Over the next three years our aim is to double our turnover and profit by developing new products, becoming digitally smart and growing our export markets.

“With the support of Made Smarter we have been able to source and seamlessly roll out a new ERP and MRP system which has resulted in significant improvements to our manufacturing efficiency as well as stock control. This in turn has freed up cash for new R&D investments.”

SME manufacturers across sectors have secured £4.6M matched funding for 241 projects, worth £16M after private sector investment.

Juergen Maier CBE, Co-Chair of Made Smarter, said: “We launched Made Smarter in the North West three years ago with the ambitious aim to kick start an adoption programme for digital technologies among small and medium-sized enterprises, strengthened by leadership training and harnessing talent within universities.

“It is fantastic to see the tremendous impact that the programme continues to have on individuals, businesses, the UK economy, and the environment.

Since launching in 2018, Made Smarter has engaged with 1,381 businesses from the region to help them introduce digital tools and technologies to help boost productivity and growth, navigate Covid-19, and tackle climate change.

670 have reaped the rewards of intensive support including expert, impartial technology advice, 248 have used digital transformation workshops to help take their first steps to transform their business, and 56 business leaders have developed the vision and the skills to pursue smarter manufacturing through the Made Smarter Leadership programme, developed in partnership with Lancaster University. Meanwhile, manufacturers have benefited from funded digital technology internships which offer students and graduates paid placements to work on live technology projects.

Over 80% of SMEs working with Made Smarter to adopt cutting-edge technologies have seen a boost in productivity, while others have benefited from increase in revenue and exports, job creation and providing new skills to workforces, as well as improved visibility and enhanced integration with supply chains. More than 25% reduced their carbon emissions, while others cut energy bills, reduced waste, and became more environmentally sustainable.

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