Learnings from COVID-19: How we grew 5x during the pandemic

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Learnings from COVID-19: How we grew 5x during the pandemic

The pandemic hit the world in 2020-21 and profoundly impacted every industry, including manufacturing. India’s manufacturing industry suffered from a huge setback, with a growth rate that plummeted to 39.3% during Q1 of 2020-21. Per government report statistics published on The Wire, the automobile industry alone suffered a loss of rupees 2,300 crores every day.

Prolonged lockdowns halted manufacturing activities, bringing the global supply chain to a standstill. Nevertheless, the pandemic taught the manufacturing ecosystem many lessons that pointed to large-scale transformations and the need to focus on sustainability and create sustainable business models.

Sustainability from the business perspective refers to embracing smart technologies and manufacturing practices. The pandemic taught us that the manufacturing industry must stay prepared for uncertainties and focus on producing more, quicker, and better, all the while focusing on sustainability. Let's look at a few approaches that can help companies achieve business sustainability to keep up with the dynamic times and evolutions ahead.

1. Digitized manufacturing and connected products - Industry 4.0

A ‘connected world’ is the key phrase encouraging companies to look beyond conventional manufacturing practices and realize the advantages of technologies like RPA (Robotic Process Automation).

Automation has been part of the manufacturing industry for a while. But the contemporary situation points towards embracing even more intelligent automation. It can help companies augment their manufacturing capabilities, broaden their market share, enhance customer experience, and amplify their competitive advantage.

Fortunately, many manufacturing companies are increasingly joining the connected revolution which is evident from the growth of the globally connected device analytics market, projected to reach USD 40 billion by 2025.

2. Localized manufacturing - Building capabilities to avoid disruptions

COVID had a direct and sudden impact on the global supply chain. A key lesson from the pandemic was to focus on developing localized supply chains.

But it isn’t easy to accomplish. Initially, companies are likely to struggle with cost concerns. With that arises the question, how can companies build local capabilities while controlling costs and achieving self-dependence?

Of course, technologies like automation and handpicking highly skilled indigenous resources answer the question. It can help manufacturers build a stable and robust supply chain.

In addition, government initiatives like Atmanirbhar Bharat can make a significant difference to India’s manufacturing capabilities. The small and mid-size manufacturing segment that forms a vital part of India’s manufacturing economy can greatly benefit from this initiative. The more self-dependent we are, the more responsive and resilient we will become to global supply chain disruptions.

3. Leveraging analytics

IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) is slated to be an integral component of manufacturing setups in the future. IIoT works on sensors that collect data relayed via low-latency and rapid networks like 5G to enable automation control and analytics.

Age-old analytics may fail to handle such a massive volume of data. Hence, companies can analyze the data collected via AI and draw valuable insights through ML algorithms. Furthermore, cloud computing enables Big Data analytics via AI. On the other hand, edge computing can enable quicker data analytics on a company's internal devices.

4. Workforce upskilling

With tectonic changes to the manufacturing landscape, the industry's workforce is also bound to undergo a significant transformation and require a unique skill set. Factories that predominantly run on automation will require more maintenance specialists than operators. These people will be responsible for ensuring that the company's equipment ecosystem runs efficiently, with minimal to zero downtime.

Achieving 5X growth during the pandemic!

Transformation is an integral part of every business. We have always kept up with every evolution and change to transform and foster the required improvements in our process and that has always helped us achieve our milestones, and more! Where the pandemic slowed-down industries worldwide, we grew 5x the existing size then and augmented our performance and productivity. Thanks to digitization, while achieving these figures, we also started two new businesses and thus expanded our group.

One of our core focus is also our people. Accordingly, along with extensive talent retention, we invest in upskilling people and building cross-functional teams. Our upskilling endeavours include classroom training as well as internal project-based training. With regards to the latter, our employees take up various projects concerning efficiency improvement, workflow streamlining, automation and digitization, etc.

Runaya is a visionary organization committed to delivering manufacturing excellence via the widespread adoption of sustainable manufacturing technologies and practices. We take sustainability as a core ethos and have aligned various initiatives to promote sustainable manufacturing while maintaining product quality and utility.

Some of our visionary sustainability initiatives include achieving carbon neutrality and becoming a net water-positive organization. We use environment-friendly, recyclable, and biodegradable packaging for all our products. Additionally, we optimize the use of solar power by using 66% of it at our MRPL plant and aim to achieve 100% dependence on renewable resources in the near future.

A peak highlight of our solar initiatives is at our RRL plant, which uses 25% renewable energy and is set to generate five lakh units of renewable and reduce 450 tons of CO2 every year.

In addition to the above, we leverage the latest technologies in automation to achieve optimal energy efficiency, and high production efficiency and work our way towards a brighter future.