Navigating the reshoring process: A step-by-step guide for German manufacturers

Veröffentlicht auf: 06.09.2023

Navigating the reshoring process: A step-by-step guide for German manufacturers

The renewed interest in reshoring – the practice of moving manufacturing operations back to the home country – has caught the attention of many German manufacturers. With increasing globalization dynamics, companies are recognizing the strategic advantages of reshoring. This article provides a comprehensive step-by-step guide for German manufacturers embarking on the reshoring journey, with critical considerations, practical tips and expert insights.

Step 1: Assess the feasibility and rationale

Before embarking on a new relocation, it is important to conduct a thorough feasibility analysis. Evaluate the reasons for reshoring. Consider factors such as rising labor costs in offshore locations, supply chain vulnerabilities exposed by global disruptions, and the potential for improved product quality and customer satisfaction through domestic manufacturing.

Step 2: Conduct a cost analysis

One of the central aspects of reshoring is cost analysis. Compare total production costs in the home country with those in offshore locations. While labor costs may be higher domestically, factors such as lower transportation costs, shorter lead times and lower warehousing costs can offset these differences. Modern technologies such as automation and advanced manufacturing techniques can further increase cost efficiency.

Step 3: Assess the supply chain

Assess your supply chain for potential vulnerabilities. Global disruptions like the COVID-19 pandemic have highlighted the risks of extended supply chains. Reshoring allows for greater control and shorter lead times, allowing manufacturers to respond quickly to market changes and disruptions. Work with suppliers who share your commitment to quality and reliability.

Step 4: Consider legal and regulatory factors

Consideration of legal and regulatory factors is crucial in the reshoring process. Check local regulations, labor laws, environmental standards and tax incentives that may influence your decision. Hire legal experts to ensure compliance with all legal requirements and avoid potential obstacles.

Step 5: Assess Workforce and Skills

Assess the availability of skilled labor in your chosen reshoring location. Ensuring you have the skilled workforce needed for efficient manufacturing may require investments in workforce development and training. Working with educational institutions and vocational training programs can help close skills gaps.

Practical tips and resources

1. Engage experts: Get advice from industry experts, consultants and organizations that specialize in reshoring. They can provide insights, best practices, and benchmarks to guide your decision-making process.

2. Pilot Projects: Consider starting pilot reshoring projects to test the possibilities. This approach allows you to identify potential challenges and make necessary adjustments before scaling.

3. Technology adoption: Leverage advanced technologies such as automation, robotics and data analytics to increase productivity and competitiveness in domestic manufacturing.

4. Collaboration with suppliers: Open communication and collaboration with your suppliers is essential. Building strong relationships can lead to better coordination, quality and cost savings.

5. Government Support: Research government incentives and programs to support reshoring initiatives. These incentives can provide financial support, tax breaks and subsidies to encourage domestic production.

6. Insights from reshoring experts

Gaining insight from those who have successfully navigated the reshoring process can be an invaluable help. Renowned industrialist and reshoring advocate Michael Schmidt emphasizes the need for a holistic approach. He explains: “Reshoring is not just about relocating production facilities; it’s about adopting a new way of thinking. It’s an opportunity to integrate innovation, sustainability and reliability into your manufacturing process.”


Reshoring offers German manufacturers a strategic way to strengthen their business. By taking a systematic approach that includes thorough feasibility assessments, cost analysis, supply chain assessments and legal considerations, manufacturers can make informed decisions about reshoring. Practical tips, resources and insights from reshoring experts further increase the success of this journey. As the global manufacturing landscape continues to evolve, German manufacturers are poised to leverage the benefits of reshoring for long-term success and resilience.

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