Service-oriented manufacturing grows

China's manufacturing sector speeds up to become more service-oriented
Photo shows a smart monitor of Zhejiang Great Shengda Packaging Co., Ltd. Photo provided by Zhejiang Great Shengda Packaging Co., Ltd

Service-oriented manufacturing, a new model that integrates manufacturing with service, is experiencing rapid development in China in the recent years. It has driven the constant emergence of new businesses, and has propelled the transformation and upgrading of the manufacturing sector.

Zhejiang Great Shengda Packaging Co., Ltd (Great Shengda) is a strong performer in the service-oriented manufacturing field. The company, by optimizing product design, can save more than 20 percent of materials used in packaging boxes. Being able to reduce over 40 million yuan ($5.7 million) of materials each year, the Chinese packaging enterprise has been selected as a supplier of SF Express, one of China’s leading comprehensive service providers of express logistics.

As a producer of corrugated boxes, Great Shengda has a secret to its success – digital designing of products.

The company has a specially tailored design and management platform where its designing personnel can start system modeling based on the primitive drawings and structural demands submitted by clients. Besides, the design will be presented to the clients in 3D form on the platform, so as to ensure that what they see is what they get.

“By offering quality industrial designing service and letting our clients join this process, we not only shortened the R&D cycle by 80 percent, but also largely improved the satisfaction of the clients,” said Sun Junjun, vice president of Great Shengda.

By integrating manufacturing with service, Great Shengda has extended its industrial chain to upper-stream designing and digital management services. It has transformed from a packaging producer to a service-oriented enterprise.

“Apart from industrial designing, service-oriented manufacturing also includes customized services, supply chain management, shared manufacturing, inspection, testing and certification services, energy conservation service and whole-life cycle management,” said an executive from China Service-Oriented Manufacturing Alliance.

Manufacturing enterprises used to focus on production and aimed for selling their products, but service-oriented manufacturing helps them shift their focus from production to service so that they can extend their industrial chain to R&D and design, as well as branding service. By doing this, they can constantly expand their services and raise the added value of their products, the executive explained.

Added value is more presented on the two ends of a smiling curve – designing and sales, said Huang Qunhui, director of the Institute of Economics, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. To transform into service-oriented manufacturing helps enterprises raise their value at the two ends, Huang, also the director of an expert committee of the China Service-Oriented Manufacturing Alliance, added.

Many international renowned manufacturers have transformed themselves into service-oriented manufacturers, and service-oriented business accounts for over half of their total revenue, Huang introduced. “Developing service-oriented manufacturing and increase the input in service will help Chinese manufacturing enterprises reduce cost and improve efficiency,” Huang said. He believes that this will also help Chinese manufacturers extend their industrial chain to cover more high-profit links, foster new growth points and better cope with the downward pressure amid COVID-19.

China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology recently issued a guidance together with other 14 departments to further promote the development of service-oriented manufacturing. The guidance proposed to support the development of multiple businesses, such as industrial designing service, customized service and supply chain management. The guidance said that prominent progress in the input and output of services of manufacturing enterprises shall be made by 2022, and a development pattern in which manufacturing and services are comprehensively and deeply integrated shall also be established.

According to the guidance, 100 demonstration platforms, including application service providers, shall be cultivated to promote the in-depth development of service-oriented manufacturing.

Chinese senior rocks short-video platform

Chinese senior rocks short-video platform, explores more in internet world
Yang Su checks comments on his cell phone. (Photo from Yang Su’s page on video platform ixigua)

In China, as internet keeps connecting more people, it continues to surprise us by making phenomenon changes to the society.

For example, Farm products from remote areas receive warm welcome as they are sold online, Families in small towns enjoy same standard shopping experience through ‘E-commerce for rural areas’.

Kids receive high-quality education during the pandemic control period through ‘Classroom in the Air’ and traditional culture becomes new fashion as they promote themselves through social media.

What will internet achieve when interacting with the seniors?

Yang Su is a professional micro vlogger in his sixties. He has over 2.3 million followers on Douyin, also known as Tik Tok overseas, and his videos have been watched by over 100 million times. One of the clips of himself playing piano he shared on the platform received over 10,000 likes within just one minute.

“Two years ago, my son uploaded a clip of me playing piano for fun and merely several hours later, it was played by over a million times,” Yang said.

Yang studied in the Shanghai Conservatory of Music and was a pianist of the Shenzhen Symphony Orchestra after graduation. According to him, he had an audience of around a thousand back then when he was performing on the stage each time. However, the internet has opened a door to a whole new world for him. In two years, he filmed over 600 short video clips.

Before the filming, Yang set up a phone holder and adjust it to a proper angle with proper lighting. It won’t even be easy for the youngsters, but Yang is quite adept at it.

However, such adeptness didn’t come easy. “The lighting, angle and composition were always not right at the beginning, my child helped me a lot later,” Yang said.

Making short videos has really introduced Yang to a new world on the internet. He established an official account on social platform WeChat to share his articles, and even started to offer piano courses online.

“Internet has opened the door to a new world,” he said, adding that he has busied himself with various activities and never finds his senior life boring.

Yang, in his sixties, never considers himself an old man. He believes the senior years only come when a person, no matter at what ages, fails to master modern technologies and tools and distances from the society.

Yang said that he hopes to bring piano, something normlly considered classy, closer to the public through the internet.