It’s an exciting time to be a product developer.

Emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and machine learning are inspiring an explosion in new product categories.

In this increasingly complex industry, the partnership between developers and manufacturers has never been more important.

So for this year’s report, we wanted to survey developers as well as manufacturers to understand where the greatest challenges and opportunities exist for streamlined collaboration.

What we found is that while speed to market is top priority for developers, there are a number of inefficiencies that constrain the process of moving from digital to physical quickly.

Both manufacturers and developers are busier than ever, managing multiple projects at once on tight timelines, and communication workflows appear to be a source of limiting friction.

Despite challenges, demand to work with U.S. manufacturers peaked in 2017, highlighting an opportunity to strengthen domestic supply chains for faster, more efficient product development cycles.