Just two years after nearly half of manufacturers hadn’t even heard of the Internet of Things, a majority are already profiting from it.

That’s according to a new report from US business leadership organisation MPI, who have released the results of its 2017 Internet of Things (IoT) Study.

Alongside dramatic jumps in awareness of IoT initiatives among manufacturers, 72% of those who have invested reported an increase in productivity and 69% reported an increase in profitability, from application of the IoT to plants and processes.

What’s more, 65% reported increased profitability from sales of IoT-enabled products, such as homewares with embedded intelligence.

For the uninitiated, the Internet of Things refers to internet-enabled computing devices embedded in everything from kettles and fridges to smart apparel, cars and machinery. As well as producing and selling IoT-enabled devices, IoT tech can be used by factories themselves – improving production line efficiency and reducing downtime with smart, reactive processes.

Despite the encouraging results of the study, many manufacturers are still unsure how to get started with the IoT, leaving them at risk of falling behind.

John R. Brandt, CEO of The MPI Group, warns, “They risk permanent competitive disadvantage if they don’t start at least experimenting with the IoT now. Which begs the question: Why aren’t executives at these firms investing in the IoT?”

“For the second year in a row, they tell us that their biggest challenge is simply identifying opportunities to implement the IoT. In other words: “I don’t know where to start.””

Considering updating your processes? Talk to Safeguard about how your manufacturing insurance might be impacted.


Anyone who has worked on a construction site understands the dangers posed by moving and lifting equipment.

Cranes are heavy, mechanical and require diligent maintenance to remain safe, while even the best trained operators can make mistakes.

Several high profile accidents involving cranes have recently hit the headlines.

In June 2017, two crane erectors were killed when a crane collapsed at a site in Crewe. A third man was taken to hospital with serious injuries. An investigation into the circumstances is being carried out in conjunction with the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). Falcon Tower Crane Services said it would “leave no stone unturned” to establish what went wrong.

Earlier in the year, the manager of a plant hire firm in Scotland was sentenced to two years in prison for health and safety breaches that led to the death of one man and seriously injured another, when a mobile elevating work platform fell to the ground.

In response to the worrying frequency of fatal equipment collapses, unions including Unite and GMB have called for the government to immediately review regulation surrounding the use of tower cranes.

A national register for all tower cranes was scrapped in 2013. Unions have urged this axed regulation to be reviewed and reintroduced. As well as recording details of crane owners, the regulation placed a duty on employers to carry out thorough inspections following installation and re-installation of the crane and notify the HSE within 14 days that these inspections had taken place.

Unite national officer for construction Bernard McAulay said in the wake of recent events, “a beefed up register should be immediately reinstated to restore confidence”.

Implementing, recording and assessing thorough Health and Safety procedures is essential to running a business which hires, owns or leases plant, as is a comprehensive insurance schedule. Talk to our Construction Insurance specialists today .