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Three Industry Trends Impacting Electronic and High-Tech Manufacturing in 2021

The Electronics and High-Tech (EHT) manufacturing industry has been changing dramatically over the past 5-10 years, making it challenging for many companies to keep up with these changes.

For 2021, technological advances will further accelerate the transformation of the EHT industry and present new challenges as well as new opportunities. Below are major trends that will continue making an impact in the coming years.

Industry Status:

  • The electronics manufacturing market is expected to grow by $120 billion from 2021-2024
  • Market growth is predicted to increase by 4.1 % in compounded annual growth rate (CAGR)
  • 79% of growth will come from the Asian-Pacific region (APAC)
  • One key driver for the market is the increasing adoption of smart manufacturing

The numbers show one driver behind growth will be increased use of technology and Digital transformation will continue to shape the future of the industry, more so in the coming years.

Now that we have entered 2021, there are quite a few important digital trends to know. But what are the most important? These three trends are the most significant for electronic & high-tech manufacturing companies to focus on:


  • 1. Internet of Things (IoT)

Smaller sensors, cloud computing and improved internet infrastructure with faster connections has been driving this technology and allowed more devices to be quickly and easily interconnected.

EHT manufacturing companies have been leveraging this technology in a variety of ways, bringing benefits such as cost reduction, product innovation, increased efficiency, and improved safety. Expect to see this trend continue and increase.

Here is how Phillips is using IoT to enrich the capabilities of their products.

Curious about how you can apply IoT to your environment? Check out this IoT Impact white paper from Cognizant. Though written in 2015, the contents remain relevant today and I quite like the structure and breakdown of definitions, impact, and use cases.


  • 2. Predictive maintenance

One increasingly common way to battle equipment breakdown is with predictive maintenance. A variety of technologies, depending on what type of equipment an individual company is using, enable predictive maintenance. The benefits of predictive maintenance are obviously less downtime, allowing companies to produce products. But there are a few other benefits, like reduced maintenance and repair costs and equipment lasting longer.

It also ties into digital transformation areas like Selling Things as Services.

At PI PLMx 2019 ESS also did a presentation on Enabling Predictive Maintenance Through PLM & IIOT. Though I wasn’t in attendance and haven’t found the slides online, perhaps they are available through PI, Murray Ross


  • 3. Leveraging the supply chain

Innovative technology across the logistics field means companies can improve their entire value chain. This has created a reduction in costs in several important areas and allowed EHT manufacturers to operate their business more efficiently.

This encourages greater flexibility, which allows most companies to become more adaptable to changing market demands. There have been a few areas where EHT companies have been able to apply quick adaptation in areas such as sales and operations planning, logistics optimization, and inventory control.

How does this relate back to your overall Product Lifecycle Management initiatives? Early and accurate collaboration with the total value chain is imperative build capability to accelerate digital transformation. Check out this article and demo from Aras on Maintaining a Digital Thread Across the Supply Chain.

To sum it up:

When we look at the top three technology trends for the EHT Industry, they are very much aligned with other industries that are forced to keep up with technological advances to gain a competitive advantage, or even to stay in business.

However, it is my experience that for most EHT companies, there is still a lot of work to be done before they have an infrastructure that can embrace the digital thread.


Additional Points of Consideration

One thing keeping these companies from building the right infrastructure for digital transformation is the fact that most EHT companies still use manual processes in many critical business processes or in transferring data between processes, departments, and systems.

Maybe it is about time to consider optimizing these manual processes in key performance areas? 2021 is going to be an exciting year. I am looking forward to seeing how these trends will impact the industry.


Keep the Conversation Going

What are your takeaways? What initiatives are you focusing on in 2021? Have you used some of these pointers in your process improvement initiatives? What other strategies have you used?

Share them with the community and keep the conversation going.

Want to share your story? Drop me a line or send me an email at I’d love to hear from you.


About the author

Jennifer Moore

Jennifer Moore has more than 15 years of experience in Business Transformation across different industries. Her extensive experience includes helping companies navigate complex regulatory requirements through software solutions. She has been developing and deploying large, multi-faceted enterprise software project, driving revenues as well as market adoption.

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