Why Companies Reshore: Challenges and How To Overcome Them

by Jason Gardner (ed.)

Restoring business operations to the home country after being relocated overseas is a trending topic in the business world. Companies are reconsidering manufacturing and service provision abroad due to fluctuating global economies and disruptions. This blog post will explore reasons for companies returning, the challenges they encounter, and strategies for a smooth transition back home.


In an era where ‘buy local’ resonates with consumers, reshoring is more than economics—it’s about perception, responsibility, and resilience. This shift is turning from a trend to a strategic move for a sustainable, crisis-resistant business model.

Reasons for Reshoring

Cost Considerations

Initially, offshoring offered cost savings with lower labor and production expenses. However, rising offshore wages and increased domestic automation are shifting the economic balance towards reshoring. Hidden costs like communication breakdowns, transportation, and longer lead times are prompting companies to reassess their offshoring strategies.

Quality Control

Proximity to production improves quality control. Companies find that products made abroad may not meet their standards, damaging brand reputation. By bringing production back, organizations can oversee quality assurance directly, leading to happier customers and fewer returns.

Supply Chain Resilience

The pandemic exposed the vulnerability of long supply chains. Lockdowns and freight stoppages left companies stranded. By reshoring, firms reduce supply chain risk, ensuring consistent service and goods despite global events.

Challenges of Dislocation

While there are strong reasons to reshore, challenges exist. Moving an offshore base goes beyond relocating equipment; it entails shifting operations and cultures.

Cultural Differences

A company is greater than its parts. Each element, like an employee or division, carries a culture-shaping operation. Dislocation involves moving or reorganizing these parts, possibly causing cultural clashes and employee disengagement.

Regulatory Hurdles

Each location has distinct regulations. Companies should grasp and adhere to local laws, sometimes adjusting governance structures. Navigating these mazes is intricate and time-consuming.

Workforce Retraining

As operations return home, companies must invest in retraining their workforce. This contributes to success in a new landscape where higher-skilled labor trumps lower-cost options.

Strategies for Successful Reshoring

Reshoring, though complex, can be navigated with effective strategies for companies to reap the benefits of local production and services.

Collaboration Between Teams

Open collaboration between offshore and onshore teams is crucial for successful knowledge transfer. By valuing insights and experience from both teams, companies can blend best practices for a stronger operational model.

Technology Adoption

Technology like the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) can streamline operations, boost responsiveness to demands, and enhance productivity for companies investing in digital solutions, improving reshoring efficiency.

Risk Management

A holistic risk management approach is crucial in reshoring. Companies need to identify and minimize risks like cost escalation early on. This may include creating backup plans, renegotiating contracts, or broadening the supplier base. Quick feedback loops are also necessary to be able to adapt to new issues as they arise.


Reshoring is more than just a one-size-fits-all or easy strategy. Companies must carefully weigh reasons for returning home, along with implications and complications. When done well, it’s a strategic shift that leads to a more adaptable business model for global market uncertainties. For firms considering reshoring, feedback, and pragmatism are key. By recognizing challenges and taking proactive steps, companies can set themselves up for long-term success in a market valuing local resilience and quality.


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