A survey just conducted by BCG, the Boston Consulting Group, of 200 U.S. executives revealed that 54 percent of companies are either already in the process of moving their manufacturing operations back to U.S. soil or are seriously considering doing so within the next few years. This is up from the 37 percent of companies which had such plans back in February of 2012. Most of these manufacturing operations are currently based in China. Lower costs for labor is the largest driving factor, with 43 survey respondents indicating this as a factor. Being close to their customer base is the second driving factor, with 35 respondents answering this was a reason. The ability to produce higher quality manufactured goods came in third, with 34 percent of respondents citing this as a reason to move back. Other reasons include having access to a more skilled labor force, the costs associated with transporting manufactured goods overseas, and inefficiencies within their supply chains.
However, the shift of U.S. manufacturing operations back onshore does not spell doom for the Chinese manufacturing sector. The strong economy and increasing disposable income of the Chinese people, as well as other developing nations in Asia, should keep these manufacturers busy even as U.S. companies pull out their operations.
Companies which are already in the process of relocating manufacturing operations to the U.S. include NCR, All-CladMetalcrafters, Master Lock, Peerless Industries, and Ford Motor Company. Twenty-one percent of survey respondents said movement back to U.S. soil was underway, or are planning to do so within the next two years. This movement is expected to create between 2.5 and five million new jobs to the U.S. in factory work and related support industries. There is also a strong surge of jobs being moved from Europe and Japan back to the U.S., driving the trend, and the job opportunities, even more.