Swiss industry embarks on efficiency drive – Study

August 18, 2015 | News Germany

Approximately four in ten Swiss industrial companies see great potential for a greater efficiency in the production process. But they also see many opportunities for greater efficiency and additional customer benefit in other areas, too, such as procurement, sales and distribution, logistics or research and development. This is the outcome of a study by the Staufen AG consultancy on the consequences for the Swiss industry of the revaluation of the Swiss Franc. 86 companies were questioned for this survey. While in the immediate wake of the unpegging of the Franc from the Euro companies tended to react with short-term measures such as price adaptations, change of suppliers, working time extensions or salary cuts, the focus is now shifting to more long-term strategies. The aim: to balance the effect of the revaluation through greater efficiency and thus to create the basis for sustainable competitiveness. For 98% of industrial companies, this is by far the most important consequence of the abandonment of the fixed Euro exchange rate by the Swiss National Bank. Admittedly, companies had already been very active in the preceding five years and set in motion changes from production to administration. Outside of the actual production process, though, these tend to be more gradual in nature. The potentials for change are a long way from being exhausted. For example, around 80% of the companies still see further scope for greater efficiency. Whereas in the past, the focus on measures to increase efficiency had been mainly on procurement of production, companies these days also see opportunities for greater efficiency in sales and distribution, logistics and even in research and development. “Our task now is to set the course at home for a successful future. Switzerland as an industrial location should not just stand for precision and quality, but in future also for excellent processes in all areas. They ensure closeness to customers, short delivery deadlines and a high level of delivery reliability,” explains Urs Hirt, Executive Director of Staufen Switzerland. “The massive increase in the value of the Swiss Franc has hit companies very hard, but it is also a fertile breeding ground for new developments – not least in areas such as sales and distributions or product development that can both contribute significantly towards a more efficient production.” Large and internationally successful Swiss companies already show the way to process excellence: “ABB does not merely focus on development and the production of cutting-edge technology, but has for some time now paid the greatest attention to excellent processes. Great efficiency in all steps as a major contributor towards maintaining competitiveness,” states Peter Maritz, Product Group Manager Generator Circuit Breakers and Gas-insulated Switchgear at ABB. This is a view shared by the senior managers interviewed in the course of the study: Two-thirds regard Lean Management, i.e. the creation of more efficient and effective processes with a focus on value-creating activities, as very important for the success of the company. The study can be requested from following address: Further Information: STAUFEN.AG
Alain Dalucas
Seidenstrasse 27 . CH-8400 Winterthur
Tel: +41 52 316 37 59 – Fax: +41 52 316 37 68 

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