The new category is designed to reward timber product manufacturers who can demonstrate exceptional improvements in production efficiency through investment in machinery and technology.

The biennial W Exhibition at the NEC, Birmingham, has established itself as the go-to event for the joinery, furniture and timber product manufacturing sectors, with around 10,000 visitors attending the showcase.

“Sponsoring the new Smart Manufacturing Award at the 2019 TTJ Awards is a great opportunity for us to support the industry further and encourage more woodworking machinery suppliers to get involved with the TTJ Awards,” explained Lisa Campagnola, event director for The W Exhibition.

“We recognise that sustainability, efficiency and use of the latest technologies are such important considerations for all companies, and we want to see more and more brands striving to become better at this.

“As great advocates of training and education at The W Exhibition, we believe by supporting this award we will help to highlight the importance of these processes within the workplace and celebrate those in our industry that are leading the path for true production efficiency.”

Manufacturers’ projects which enter the Smart Manufacturing Award should also demonstrate progress towards Smart Manufacturing / Industry 4.0, which makes greater use of dataflow, interconnectivity between machines, automation and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Smart manufacturing technologies are starting to change the nature of production across a range of industries, giving the ability of mass customisation, improved visibility of workflow and use of materials, predictive maintenance and even faster development of new products.

The award is open to all companies in the timber products supply chain from sawmills and wood-based panel producers right down to components producers, joineries and furniture manufacturers. More details and entry forms to download can be accessed on