Manufacturers set to invest more in technology in 2023

Jan 20, 2023
Author: Craig Burton
Craig acts as commercial partner for a wide range of corporate and non-corporate clients. He is also responsible for maintaining technical standards throughout the firm.
manufacturing technology


The Digital Catapult’s Manufacturing Leaders poll 2022 has found that the top priority for business leaders in the manufacturing industry across the UK is the commitment to innovation and to continue investing in deep technology solutions.


What about supply chain challenges and rising energy costs?

Despite supply chain issues and rising energy costs becoming particularly challenging issues for manufacturers in 2022, the UK manufacturing industry is still willing to invest more in transformative technologies in 2023. This investment will be used to speed up the adoption of digital solutions in the UK manufacturing sector.


Which manufacturing technology are manufacturers looking to invest in?

According to the poll, 35% of manufacturers said that investing in virtual and/or augmented reality (VR & AR) was their top technology priority in 2023.


Why are UK manufacturers looking to invest in VR and AR?

Investing in VR and AR can benefit manufacturers in multiple ways including:

  • Increasing productivity.
  • Reducing training costs with VR training.
  • Using VR & AR to create a safer working environment without risking employee health in the process.
  • VR can be used to design products that improve quality, whilst also saving time and money in the design process. Designers can now use VR to make small design changes that would have cost time or money in the past.

Investing in VR can be used to enhance most areas of a manufacturing business. This is why 35% of UK manufacturing leaders have chosen this as their top investment priority in 2023.


Additive manufacturing

The number of manufacturers looking to invest more in additive manufacturing technology increased by 22%. 68% of UK manufacturers identified this as a major opportunity for growth compared to 46% this time last year.


What is additive manufacturing?

Effectively, additive manufacturing is an industrial production name for 3D printing. This technology allows a computer to create three-dimensional objects by layering and depositing materials.


Why are manufacturers wanting to invest in additive manufacturing?

Additive manufacturing allows manufacturers to create bespoke complex parts with almost no wastage. It is also good for prototyping as this can save manufacturers time as part alterations can be made digitally which is quicker and more efficient than traditional subtractive manufacturing techniques.



To conclude, despite supply chain issues and rising energy costs, the top priority for UK manufacturers in 2023 is to invest in technology. This is because investing in technology solutions provides manufacturers with many benefits including increased productivity, reduced training costs and improved quality of products.

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Craig Burton

Partner, Sheffield

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