Industrial B2B is where our heart lies in this agency. I was reminded of this as I sat at a client launch recently and found myself smiling as the faint smell of oil, diesel and metal wafted by me. It felt comfortable and familiar.
My father was a very hard working plant engineer for Colgate Palmolive and much of my childhood was spent visiting the factories that he designed and installed equipment for, tinkering and testing and dealing with outages on weekends.
I cut my teeth as a new PR grad working at elevator company, Otis’s Minto manufacturing plant, and from there have gone on to support all manner of industrial clients across the agri and construction; engineering and manufacturing sectors.
I have a good sense of what it takes to make things. How important process is and how important people and culture are to make it all happen as it should and safely.
So it has always unsettled me somewhat as I hear of Australia’s big decline in the manufacturing sector. Because, by contrast, all around me were businesses doing an awesome job of creating and making and value adding.
Yes, big businesses have left our shores and the sector has had its own correction, but it’s pleasing to now see the conversation about manufacturing changing to a much more positive outlook.
The Ai Group’s Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI) shows the manufacturing sector has seen 25 months of growth and added tens of thousands of jobs.
Yes, as a country we are regrettably good at exporting bulk commodities for someone else to value add; but we’re also serial tinkerers, entrepreneurs and industrious types, who are brave and forward thinking and just giving it a go.
As part of its rebirth, manufacturing needs an image change and a spotlight put onto the incredibly diverse range of activities that fit under its remit.
The first step is for businesses to want to see themselves as a manufacturing entity.
One of our key ag clients, the Australian Meat Industry Council (AMIC) moved in this direction earlier this year when they formed the Australian Agricultural Manufacturers’ Alliance (AAMA).
The alliance was created to represent the shared interests of agri manufacturers and contribute to the recognition, growth and sustainability of the sector. They are now in the early stages of working together on issues like energy costs, and moving forward will share learnings and data. All great aims.
The manufacturing sector also needs the incredible stories that sit within it to come to light.
We come across these stories daily, such as in our work with CommBank, who help support start ups and established business alike and in our radio program, Regional Voices, where we share incredible stories from regional Australia.
Businesses like Rocks Gone and Swarm Farm Robotics and Kelly Engineering, whom we’ve interviewed on Regional Voices, not to mention HC clients, Kingspan and Davey, who are building great businesses with local manufacturing.
Australia needs a circle of support around businesses like these and the manufacturing sector as a whole. At HC, we take our role in this seriously.
We help uncover the unique and the special and put a spotlight on hardworking visionaries, to ensure their stories get told and the awards and funds and best talent they need to succeed, flow.
If you want to know more about the sector and the great stories being told – or if you have one to tell – keep your eye on this new manufacturing news hub, aumanufacturing.com.au, the brainchild of ex Manufacturing Monthly journo, Brent Ballinksi, and industry notable, Peter Roberts.
Let’s support them to amplify the awesome work happening in the sector.
And if you are a great industrial B2B brand – big or small, start up or established, that wants support from a team who will be passionate about your success and is ready to get to know your product and people inside out, then get in touch with HC.