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Optimism Down Among Small Manufacturers

Xometry’s Small Manufacturing Index finds fewer shops anticipating growth.

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By Team Xometry
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Xometry, the leading on-demand manufacturing platform, today released the findings of its quarterly Small Manufacturing Index (SMI), showing less year-over-year and month-over-month growth optimism for small to mid-size manufacturers.

43% of surveyed manufacturers in April reported that they were likely to see strong to mild year-over-year growth, compared to 61% of those surveyed in January. 42% of surveyed manufacturers in April reported that they were likely to see strong to mild month-over-month growth, compared to 57% in January. However, a subset of manufacturers that use online manufacturing platforms indicated an increase in expected year-over-year growth, with 65% expecting to see growth this quarter compared to the same time last year – a 4% improvement from last quarter’s survey.

The quarterly index, which takes the pulse of small to mid-size manufacturing shops, asked manufacturers both inside and outside Xometry’s partner network whether they expected to see growth in business compared to previous months and prior years. It also asked what they anticipate being their growth sectors. These small to mid-size manufacturers represent more than 190,000 companies, over a $50 billion market.

“Xometry has designed the SMI to gauge changes in demand expectations in the low-volume manufacturing industry nationwide,” said Laurence Zuriff, Xometry co-founder and CFO. “The sector is highly fragmented and regionalized, as a result it can be challenging for business owners to get a sense of the health of the sector as a whole. We’re pleased to offer these small shops a consistent way to assess the market in which they participate.”

Xometry, which operates a first of its kind e-commerce marketplace, has enabled their nationwide network of hundreds of manufacturing partners to fulfill orders placed through the company’s highly popular online platform. The platform, which instantly provides pricing, lead times, and manufacturability feedback for customers, overhauls a previously time-intensive and inefficient process.

About Xometry

Xometry is transforming American manufacturing through a proprietary software platform which offers on-demand manufacturing to a diverse customer base, ranging from startups to Fortune 100 companies. We provide product designers and engineers the most efficient way to source high-quality custom parts, with 24/7 access to instant pricing, expected lead time and manufacturability feedback. Our nationwide network of partner manufacturing facilities enables us to maintain consistently fast lead times while offering a broad array of capabilities, including CNC Machining, 3D Printing, Sheet Metal and Urethane Casting. Xometry’s customers include General Electric, MIT Lincoln Laboratory, NASA and the United States Army.

About the Small Manufacturing Index

The Small Manufacturing Index, released quarterly by Xometry, takes the pulse of the heart of American manufacturing by analyzing and quantifying the performance of small to mid-size manufacturers. The index is developed through a survey that asks members whether they expect to see growth in business compared to previous months and prior years, as well as what they expect to be their anticipated growth sectors. The survey is drawn from Xometry’s partner network of small to mid-size manufacturers as well as from out-of-network shops with less than 50 employees. The index aims to highlight trends over time to provide analysis and predictions on the national outlook for small to mid-size manufacturers.

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Team Xometry
This article was written by various Xometry contributors. Xometry is a leading resource on manufacturing with CNC machining, sheet metal fabrication, 3D printing, injection molding, urethane casting, and more.