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Category: Manufacturing

Trump Budget Would Scrap the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP)

The Trump administration has released details of its budget proposal and it doesn’t look good for manufacturers.  An Associated Press review showed that only the departments of Defense, Veterans Affairs and the Treasury would see funding increases. While State, Education and Justice departments, Housing and Urban Development and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are facing huge cuts, there’s one area that particularly effects the manufacturing sector. Under this new budget, the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) doesn’t make the cut. The MEP assists small and mid-sized manufacturers, as well as the Economic Development Administration and the Minority Business Development Agency.  For every dollar...

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GE Plant Is Not Just Smart, It’s ‘Brilliant’

GE’s efforts to use digital technology has created a process and culture that’s not just smart, but “brilliant,” says plant manager Jeffrey Smith.   GROVE CITY, Pa. – Were this five years ago, Keith Spahn would be busy at his workstation scrawling calculations by hand to determine whether a metal plate used on locomotive engines was fit for service or should be scrapped. The process could take up to 10 minutes. Not only was it time-consuming, he says, it left wide open the potential for human error. One mistake could result in sending a bad part down the line...

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Smart Factories and the Modern Manufacturer

Capgemini’s Digital Transformation Institute (DTI) and Digital Manufacturing services relay the findings of their Smart Factories report. The report finds that many technologies such as the IoT, Big Data Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Advanced Robotics, 3D printing and Cloud Computing will impact the manufacturing landscape. Sectors such as industrial manufacturing, aerospace and defense, and automotive and transportation have the largest numbers of manufacturers working towards a culture of smart manufacturing.  Over 70% of manufacturers either already have a smart factory initiative or are working on formulating it, while a mere 14% are satisfied with their level of success. Even lower, 6% of manufacturers are “Digital Masters” who...

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Webinars for MFG Day Hosts

If you’ve visited mfgday.com lately, you may have noticed that the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) has taken charge of Manufacturing Day, giving it a renewed energy and focus as we head into our sixth year. To familiarize potential Hosts with MFG DAY, NAM will be hosting three webinars in May.   Thursday May 18 2 – 2:45 pm EST Register Now Tuesday, May 23 12 – 12:45 pm EST Register Now Thursday, May 25 1 – 1:45 pm EST Register Now If you’re curious about what your options are for hosting an event, how to get people to your...

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Pushing Manufacturing Productivity to the Max

Many companies do their best to optimize production processes using established rules of thumb or incomplete data. But at the end of the month or reporting period, they often discover sizeable gaps between actual profits and what they had expected. In our experience, that is because they typically lack precise-enough measures to understand the small, real-time variations in process flows and manufacturing steps that cumulatively erode returns at facilities such as mines, steel mills, or other manufacturing plants. This information, moreover, is rarely shared quickly enough for managers to respond in the tight time frames required. McKinsey’s work across a...

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Leaner Than Lean: How Digitalization Transforms Manufacturing

If you want to see the future of manufacturing, follow the Tama River about 45 kilometers upstream from Tokyo’s Haneda Airport to the GE Healthcare facility in Hino, Japan. Inside this outwardly conventional, low-rise suburban business complex is emerging the blueprint for the future of manufacturing, tweak by painstaking tweak. The Industrial Internet meets Kaizen, the Japanese concept of continuous improvement, at GE Healthcare’s plant in Hino, Japan, GE’s most advanced “brilliant factory”. “What we’re doing is applying digital tools, advanced manufacturing solutions, on top of a Lean foundation,” explains Frederick Mauermann, general manager for global lean manufacturing at...

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Innovative Solutions Within Your Workforce: Day 3 of the Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo

Transform from the inside. Sometimes, the most valuable solutions are the ones that already exist within your organization. This principle was pointed out by keynote speaker, Billy Ray Taylor, the Director of Commercial Manufacturing for Goodyear, using a graphic of workers pushing a wagon with square wheels. The graphic depicted the struggle of pushing this wagon. However, the wagon was already carrying circular wheels. The workers were so distracted with the work that they neglected to notice the shape on the circular wheels on the inside. Companies tend to work so hard to try to get a project done that...

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Apple Plans to Spend $1 Billion to Support Advanced Manufacturing Jobs in the U.S.

Apple says that it intends to bolster the U.S. manufacturing sector by creating a $1 billion “advanced manufacturing fund” — with some of that initial money going toward a company the tech giant is prepared to partner with, chief executive Tim Cook said. The announcement, which Cook made Wednesday on CNBC, comes after months of focus by President Trump on jobs, manufacturing and the global economy. Cook did not appear to suggest that his company’s decision was influenced by Trump. But the president has showered praise on companies such as Carrier, SoftBank and Charter Communications for promising to hire more American workers...

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Evaluation Leads to Innovation: Exploring Day 2 of the Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo

While technology’s possibilities might seem frightening, they offer a lot of possibilities for manufacturers. By breaking down an organization and seeking how to improve inside functionality, a company can also expand what it offers to its customers and its employees. Day 2 of the Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo (M&T Show) gave attendees a glance into how their companies can improve and what practices are available in order to provide them with a competitive advantage. Dr. Ken Washington, the Vice President of Research and Advanced Engineering at Ford, opened the second day with a presentation on how Ford...

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Innovation on Display: Day 1 of the Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo

Blink and you might miss something in manufacturing. The fast, evolving world of technology is playing a large role in how manufacturing and all of its sectors function. From quality, to monitoring, training, and every facet you can imagine, manufacturing is no longer the old, dirty factory that might come to mind. Now it’s wearables, 3D printing, robots, and training right outside of your door. At the Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo (M&T Show), all of these influencers come together to give attendees a peak inside what could be for their customers and for them. These technological advancements...

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April 2017 Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®

PMI® at 54.8% New Orders, Production and Employment Growing Supplier Deliveries Slowing Inventories Growing   (Tempe, Arizona) — Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in April, and the overall economy grew for the 95th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®. The report was issued today by Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, Chair of the Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) Manufacturing Business Survey Committee: “The April PMI® registered 54.8 percent, a decrease of 2.4 percentage points from the March reading of 57.2 percent. The New Orders Index registered 57.5 percent,...

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10 Reasons to Attend the IndustryWeek Manufacturing & Technology Show

The countdown is on to IndustryWeek’s Manufacturing & Technology Show, happening May 8-10 in Cleveland, Ohio. The Manufacturing & Technology Show (M&T Show) is a gathering of manufacturing information and trends to help you understand actionable approaches and seize new opportunities in the industrial world. At the show you’ll be able to learn more about the latest technologies and how you can adopt them, reshoring initiatives, mastering the millennial workforce, and an array of relevant topics that can and will influence your business. M&T Show is organized by IndustryWeek, a resource that explores the issues, strategies, trends, and more which influence manufacturing. IndustryWeek...

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Early Verdict of Hannover Messe 2017? Absolutely Gripping!

Hannover Messe is the world’s leading industrial tech show, the equivalent to manufacturing’s San Diego Comic Con, but with few to no attendees dressed as Sailor Moon. The industrial machines, though, are sometimes even crazier than what’s appearing in the latest Hollywood sci-fi flicks. Have you seen Festo’s OctopusGripper? What the holy frickin’ future is going on? Along with releasing the robo-kraken, the show has put the Internet of Things front and center. Europeans of course call it Industrie 4.0, but they also spell “color” with a “u” and think soccer is called football, so what can you do? Either way,...

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Manufacturer Uses the Internet and Radio to Become a “Broadcaster” of Both Information and Forging Services

April 2017 – All Metals & Forge Group (AM&FG) built its reputation on superior quality and short turnaround times for its bars, blocks, gear blanks, flanges, forged discs, cylinders and custom shapes. But the Fairfield, New Jersey-based company does more than merely shape and form metal. Owner Lew Weiss is using the Internet and radio waves to forge closer relationships with a broad cross section of manufacturers by delivering mission-critical information.  Weiss has worked in the industry for 56 years, since he was 18 and studying marketing at Queens College in New York City. He landed in metals because “I needed...

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Study: Women Hold The Key To Closing The Skills Gap

Manufacturing needs people. More specifically, manufacturing needs women. Manufacturing executives around the world rank talent the top driver of manufacturing competitiveness, but at the same time, the U.S. manufacturing industry faces an estimated two-million-worker shortfall over the next decade. Women can be a solution to the industry’s skills gap problem through increased visibility for female leaders, flexible work practices and other important industry-wide changes. Women bring a fresh perspective to the diverse and fulfilling roles the industry has to offer. There are vast career opportunities available – from engineering to design to marketing. There’s a place for everyone in this industry....

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Stepping Up to Make an Impact That Matters for Women in Manufacturing

Women in manufacturing study overview The Manufacturing Institute, APICS, and Deloitte surveyed over 600 women in manufacturing and conducted nearly 20 manufacturing executive interviews to explore how effectively manufacturing companies are attracting, recruiting, and retaining women, and what should be done to close the gender gap. The women we surveyed are well-educated (90 percent hold a bachelor’s degree or above), experienced (71 percent have been working over 15 years), hold a variety of senior positions, and are employed by large companies (52 percent work in organizations with annual revenue over $1 billion). Women represent a vast talent pool: Women constitute...

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Making an IMPACT: The 2017 STEP Ahead Awards

The fifth annual STEP Ahead Awards are taking place Thursday, April 20, in Washington, D.C. and will honor the best and most inspiring women in manufacturing. STEP stands for Science, Technology, Engineering and Production. These awards recognize the exemplary women in manufacturing leading by example. STEP Ahead is a national honor that not only identifies the most inspiring women of today, but also encourages the most inspiring women of the future to press onward.  This year’s theme is IMPACT, of how women have made an impact on their companies, communities, and even themselves. Through industry advocacy, mentoring youth, leading the...

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What’s Holding US Manufacturing Back?

There has been an ongoing national conversation about bringing manufacturing back to the United States. The government, states, educators, and organizations have been pushing a resurgence through, addressing many of the roadblocks facing these organizations, including: lack of skilled labor, decreased sales, advancing lean manufacturing, integrating additive manufacturing, robotics, IoT and Big Data.  The middle-market manufacturers – primarily in the Midwest, in the range of $50-$500m in revenues, employing 10-800 people – face a unique set of challenges. While the advancement of things like 3D printing and robotics will undoubtedly change the manufacturing landscape, these manufacturers face much more...

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Space: Manufacturing’s Final Frontier

“We want to be the people leading this next boom, this next revolution,” says Andrew Rush, the CEO and president of Made In Space Inc. “We don’t want other folks to lead it. We want to be out in front. As Americans we have a huge desire to explore and innovate. I don’t think there is any more innovative place with an opportunity to explore than space.” After President John F. Kennedy announced in May 1961 the national goal of sending a man to the moon before the end of the decade, a large portion of the nation’s scientific...

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2017 First Quarter Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey

Americans appear to be more optimistic about growth in recent months, and manufacturers are no exception. New results from the NAM Manufacturers’ Outlook survey show manufacturers’ optimism rose to a new all-time high in the survey’s nearly 20-year history.  In this latest NAM Manufacturers’ Outlook survey, 93.3 percent of manufacturers are either somewhat or very positive about their own company’s outlook, up from 56.6 percent one year ago and 77.8 percent in December (Figure 1). As a result, the NAM Manufacturers’ Outlook Index also soared to a new high, up from 53.1 in December to 63.7 in this report (Figure 2)....

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63 Manufacturing Camps to be Held in 2017

Nuts, Bolts & Thingamajigs® (NBT), the foundation of the Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, Intl.® (FMA), announces that 63 programs will receive 2017 summer manufacturing camp grants. NBT will award 46 funding grants, ranging from $1,000 to $2,500, for a total of $90,500 to community and technical colleges offering summer day camp experiences that introduce young people ages 12 to 16 to careers in manufacturing and engineering. In addition, NBT will support 17 affiliate camps. After a camp has received 3 years of funding from NBT and has become self-sustaining with support from local resources, they can apply as an...

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Important Points to Know and Remember Under NAFTA When Doing Business in Canada

Did You Know: 70% of United States exports go to Canada?  NAFTA/US Relations   The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is an agreement between Canada, the United States, and Mexico. Under the treaty, these three countries have agreed to remove their trade barriers. With the goal of making these countries more competitive globally, NAFTA’s members contribute more than $20 trillion as measured by BEA.gov. Currently NAFTA is the world’s largest free trade agreement. NAFTA has come under scrutiny and will have several revisions.  Whether you’re already exporting to Canada or not, it’s definitely a market you want to consider. If you are, there are...

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Advanced Manufacturing & Design Cleveland: An Opportunity for the Fastener Industry in the Midwest

Advanced Manufacturing & Design (ADM) Cleveland took place March  29-30 at the Huntington Convention Center in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Special events, educational sessions, exhibitors, and networking opportunities were available for manufacturers and those in the industry to learn about the latest trends in manufacturing. For attendees, the expo’s admission was sponsored, allowing for an array of visitors to explore the future of manufacturing free of charge. The expo featured automation, robotics, 3d printing, medical manufacturing advancements, overcoming the workforce/skills gap, lightweight manufacturing, and more.  Attendees, exhibitors, and speakers traveled from near and far to the event to gain and give to...

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The Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Has Been Helping Manufacturers and Now It Needs Your Help

MEP is a public-private partnership with Centers in all 50 states and Puerto Rico dedicated to serving small and medium-sized manufacturers. Last year, MEP Centers interacted with 25,445 manufacturers, leading to $9.3 billion in sales, $1.4 billion in cost savings, $3.5 billion in new client investments, and helped create and retain more than 86,602 jobs. The above is a description of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), and it is facing the possibility of disappearing. Founded in 1988, the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) has sought to enhance the productivity and technological performance of manufacturing in the United States. The...

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Advanced Design & Manufacturing Cleveland: A Strong Opening

Advanced Design & Manufacturing Cleveland (ADM) offered a full spectrum of subjects for engineers and manufacturing professionals. March 29, 2017 kicked off the inaugural expo. Covering additive manufacturing, automation, lightweight manufacturing, medical applications, connected factories, and more, the expo offered information on the upcoming opportunities available to manufacturing. Taking place in downtown Cleveland at the Huntington Convention Center, ADM was in the heart of one of the greatest states for manufacturing. Day one of the expo started strong with opening remarks from the Chair, Jack Schron of Jergens, Inc.  Visitors packed the expo floor looking at the latest technologies, products, and...

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Gearing Up for Advanced Design and Manufacturing Cleveland (ADM)

Manufacturing is constantly changing. Even the newer issues are shifting. In the ever-changing, fast-paced world of today’s manufacturing, it is important to stay on top of trends and how they may impact your business. Ohio has long been a force in the world of manufacturing. Where mills once flourished, now lives an emerging industrial culture of technology. In the heart of it all is Advanced Design and Manufacturing Cleveland (ADM).  ADM is taking place March 29–30, 2017 at the Huntington Convention Center of Cleveland. Here attendees can learn about the latest technologies, materials, and processes across a broad spectrum which influence advanced design and manufacturing. This...

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If the US Wants High-End Manufacturing Jobs, the US Needs Imports

President Donald Trump was swept into office on promises of shaking up the U.S. economy, but one of his hallmark plans may run into a harsh economic reality, according to a CNBC analysis. Two of Trump’s main economic talking points are increasing the number of well-paid manufacturing jobs and cutting back on imports. But many of the highest-paying manufacturing jobs — and those most important to the economy — rely most heavily on imported materials. Take a look at the chart below. It’s based on an analysis by economists at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, a nonpartisan think tank. Click Here...

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Meet the #NewRosies of GE Appliances

“I love seeing the most basic to the highest tech processes, from beginning to end.  It really is an art as well as a skill and it never ceases to amaze me how our company or companies I know solve problems around the world.”   This powerhouse team of #NewRosies hails from GE Appliances. Collectively they boast over 100 years of manufacturing experience! As trailblazing females in manufacturing,  these women are sure to inspire future generations of women. What attracted you to a career in manufacturing? Cheryl Thesier | Both of my parents were fixer-upper types; one with nuts and bolts and...

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Advice From Women Leaders In Manufacturing

There are several organizations dedicated to increasing the number of women in the workforce. However, many women still feel underrepresented, particularly in the C-suit. Fortunately, there are a few women making an impact at this level. ThomasNet spoke to Natalie Menke, president of Universal Blower Pac; and Paige D Bowen, President of Seelye Acquisitions, Inc., to get their insight on manufacturing and women taking over leadership roles.   Click Here to Read the Full Article  ...

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Manufacturing Expands at Best Rate in 3 Years

Manufacturing expanded in February at the fastest pace since August 2014. The Institute for Supply Management reports order backlogs jumped to 57 from 49.5. The Institute for Supply Management’s index climbed to 57.7, the sixth straight advance, from 56 a month earlier, the group’s report showed March 1. Readings above 50 indicate growth. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists was 56.2. The ISM’s gauge of orders increased to the highest level in just over three years, while an index of production posted its best reading since March 2011. The data were preceded by recent regional indicators showing...

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​Making A New Era: How A High-Tech Facility Is Shifting Students’ Mindset Around Manufacturing

In the push to get more students into college and on career-ready tracks, fewer and fewer high school students are making the jump into one of the industries that employs the most Americans: manufacturing. But why?  According to David Clayton, director of Greenville Technical College’s Center for Manufacturing Innovation (CMI) in South Carolina, the answer lies in part due to a longstanding, oversimplified stereotype that’s pervaded the industry for years.  “The image a lot of people have of manufacturing is that these jobs are fairly low wage, that workers are in a dirty, dangerous environment, or that the work is dull,” he...

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Manufacturing Production Expanded for the Fourth Consecutive Month

  The Federal Reserve said that manufacturing production expanded for the fourth consecutive month. (To be fair, November’s increase was essentially stagnant, up 0.03 percent.) Output in the sector was up 0.2 percent in January, extending the 0.2 percent gain seen in December. The recent improvements suggest that manufacturers are beginning to recover from notable weaknesses over the past two years, with a strong dollar and global headwinds dampening overall activity. In that regard, manufacturing production grew just 0.3 percent year-over-year in January, highlighting the significant challenges seen over the past 12 months in growing production. Similarly, manufacturing capacity utilization edged...

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Why I Love Manufacturing

“Nine years ago, I walked into what would become The Manufacturing Institute. I was excited and eager…but was also nervous about such a big change. But the one thing that I knew I could rely on was my passion. Passion for manufacturing, passion for its millions of workers, and passion for its many supporters.  Why do I love manufacturing? That’s always been easy for me to answer.” -Jennifer McNelly Manufacturing is a staple of our economy, important to both its overall health as well as the lives of many Americans who work in the sector. In 2015, including benefits, the...

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Da Vinci Code 2.0: How 3D Printing And Digital Technologies Are Altering The Face Of Aircraft Engine Manufacturing In Italy

Just as the internet revolutionized shopping and information, additive technologies like 3D printing are revolutionizing manufacturing.  These additive techniques grow parts from the ground up by either depositing or fusing layers of material. Engineers can create these designs on their computers and then send them to a 3D printer. There the machine takes the design and breaks it into layers.  “There are no limits to complexity,” says Dario Mantegazza, an Avio Aero manufacturing engineer in Cameri. “You can create hollow structures if you want, or something like a bone.” Cameri is a key piece of GE’s additive manufacturing business strategy....

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10 Reasons to Stay in the United States for Manufacturing

Once upon a time, factories were booming and manufacturing was the “it” career. However, as businesses sought the “best” deals, they moved overseas and that boom began to dwindle. While some companies continued to survive, others drowned. The 20th Century decline of manufacturing has been heartbreaking, despite its economic importance. It’s the 21st Century and it’s time to make a comeback.  Welcome to the 21st Century and it’s time to reshore. Still a force to be reckoned with, still vital to our economy, still in need of hard-working, highly skilled women and men, manufacturing is experiencing a revolution. There is no going back...

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DoD Announces Award of New Advanced Robotics Manufacturing Innovation Hub in PA

On January 13, the Department of Defense awarded the 14th Manufacturing USA institute – the Advanced Robotics Manufacturing (ARM) Innovation Hub – to American Robotics, Inc. The eighth DoD-led institute, the ARM Institute joins the Manufacturing USA network in its collective effort to help revitalize American manufacturing and incentivize companies to invest in new technology development in the United States. Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the winning consortium – comprised of state and local governments, industry, universities, community colleges, and non-profit organizations from across the country – contributed $173 million, to be combined with $80 million in federal funding. The substantial...

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Industrial Robots are Becoming Accessible to Smaller Manufacturers

Robots used to seem impossible to small and medium manufacturers, but not anymore. Trends and advances in technology have made robots accessible to smaller companies. Luckily for them, investing in automation comes with benefits. Robots provide benefits to manufacturers such as an increase in safety, quality, and output. Automation is no longer an advantage for only the big players. Dramatic advances in robotic technologies and the decreasing costs of these technologies are making it possible for smaller manufacturers to acquire robots. In recent years, robotic technologies have become more affordable and their abilities more desirable to smaller manufacturers.  Collaborative robots (co-bots) are beneficial to companies...

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Partnership Ushers in New Age of Manufacturing

LEETONIA, Ohio — A large 3-D printer acquired by Youngstown State University (YSU) and operated through a partnership with Humtown Products Inc. and America Makes is redirecting the course of manufacturing in the metals casting industry, officials say. “Today is really the dawn of a new day for manufacturing in the Mahoning Valley,” Brett Conner said Tuesday. “This is just a catalyst.” Conner is director of advanced manufacturing workforce initiatives at YSU. Conner, YSU President Jim Tressel and Humtown President Mark Lamoncha joined more than 100 guests at Agile Castings Solutions, a subsidiary of Humtown, at its new building...

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2017 Faces of Manufacturing Nominees

Faces of Manufacturing wants your votes to pick the top Faces for 2017. The Georgia Manufacturing Extension Partnership – Gamep at Georgia Tech –  is highlighting some of the standout individuals in manufacturing. Every couple of weeks a new nomination will be added to their site and announced through social media. When the announcements are made, participants will have one week to like their post on  Facebook, Twitter, and/or LinkedIn to advance them to the finals. The top 10 nominees will face off during the Final votes taking place August 17-25. The Faces of Manufacturing will be announced the week of October 3 Wishing the best...

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Procurement, Industry 4.0, Cybersecurity, Robotics and Automation: The Image of Manufacturing is Evolving.

Technology in manufacturing is no stranger to the spotlight. Manufacturing is changing in every way due to these technology shifts. Workforce training and education are affected, production is affected, monitoring is affected – the impact is everywhere. Among all of the technology noise, what makes or breaks a new technology in manufacturing? The answer lies in how employees respond to the technology, how it benefits overall production value, and if it can be leveraged directly to protect the business and consumers simultaneously. Manufacturers demand technologies that can boost their output without causing an additional strain on resources, and there are five technologies...

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Reasons To Be Optimistic About The U.S. Manufacturing Renaissance

The future of manufacturing is one of the most talked-about issues in the U.S. right now, and it clearly resonates with the American people. Overseas companies operating within the U.S., many employing thousands of American workers and contributing to the technological strength of U.S. manufacturing, can play an important role in this discussion. One such company is Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI), a Japanese company with U.S. headquarters in Houston and a significant number of group companies, partners and investments across the U.S. They locally manufacture a range of industrial products, from forklifts, turbochargers and key manufacturing equipment, to massive...

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ORNL Researchers Demonstrate 3D-Printed Magnets Outperform Those Manufactured Traditionally

Researchers at the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) have demonstrated that permanent magnets produced by additive manufacturing can outperform bonded magnets made using traditional techniques while conserving critical materials. Scientists fabricated isotropic, near-net-shape, neodymium-iron-boron (NdFeB) bonded magnets at DOE’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at ORNL using the Big Area Additive Manufacturing (BAAM) machine. The result, published in Scientific Reports, was a product with comparable or better magnetic, mechanical, and microstructural properties than bonded magnets made using traditional injection molding with the same composition. The additive manufacturing process began with composite pellets consisting of 65 volume percent isotropic NdFeB...

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US Manufacturing Opens 2017 with a Production Boom

American manufacturing expanded in December at the fastest pace in two years, reflecting firmer output and the biggest pickup in orders growth since August 2009. The Institute for Supply Management announced today that its index increased to 54.7, the fourth straight advance, from 53.2 a month earlier. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey called for 53.8. Readings above 50 indicate growth. The ISM’s measure of orders surged 7.2 points, while its gauge of prices paid for materials climbed to the highest level since June 2011. The jump in bookings, including the strongest pace of export orders since May...

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2017: Inspired, Educated and Prosperous

For over 80 years, SME has been dedicated manufacturing. Through its education foundation, training and development, media, membership and trade shows and conferences, SME offers valued resources and services to current professionals and future generations. Scholarships and curriculum to educational institutions ultimately maps back to advance manufacturing and attract future generations for the workforce. Manufacturing supports over 12 million workers, and the right training is important. A company’s ability to attract and retain employees as well as train its workforce on the current tools, technologies and processes which contributes to the widening skills gap problem. Baby Boomers are retiring and the technology is advancing.  Machining, welding, mechatronics, CNC programming,...

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Is It too Late to Jump Into the Metals Rally?

Prices of industrial metals have been on a tear this year, including super-performer zinc, which is up about 70%. But how long can the rally last? Is the price runup excessive and overheated? Or do improved fundamentals signal prices still have a lot higher to go? Zinc and nickel—up about 35% year-to-date on the London Metal Exchange—are keeping a lot of bulls in their camp. The question of what’s ahead for copper—up about 25% on the LME—tends to draw a mix of predictions. Aluminum—which is up about 14% so far this year—prompts the most bearish forecasts. Click Here to...

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#WiMHearHerStory with Carla Enzinger, Human Resource Manager at Batesville Tool & Die, Inc. (BTD)

Women in Manufacturing is committed to supporting women in the manufacturing sector. They firmly believe that mentorship and community-building will help attract and retain women in manufacturing. As part of their mission, they feature on their blog the stories of women we admire who are currently working in manufacturing. These installments are a part of their “Hear Her Story” series. In their latest, they spoke to Carla Enzinger, Human Resource Manager at Batesville Tool & Die, Inc. (BTD). Carla now has the privilege to assist our employees the company’s employees in implementation and administration of benefit plans, employee relations, manage on-site health clinic, community involvement/boards, department...

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Manufacturing’s Big Challenge: Finding Skilled and Interested Workers

Felsomat, a German manufacturer that makes automation equipment for the automotive industry, has a talent problem that’s become a growth problem. Plans to triple the size of its Schaumburg facility, to 100,000 square feet, have stalled in part because it is difficult to find skilled technicians to design, build and service the automated systems that have allowed U.S. carmakers to produce more than ever before with fewer people, said Richard Gilchrist, chairman of Felsomat USA. Despite the national hand-wringing about manufacturing jobs lost to automation and cheaper foreign labor, and President-elect Donald Trump’s threats of penalties against companies that offshore, some...

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Manufacturing Jobs are Returning to Some Places. But These Jobs are Different.

The nation shed manufacturing jobs at a steady pace over most of the last quarter century. A combination of trade deals, automation and economic recessions sent the number of manufacturing jobs plummeting, with 6 million jobs being lost by 2011. But since then, about half a million jobs have been regained.  They’re not the same jobs that left. They’re not coming back everywhere, or even in the same places where jobs were lost. The map of where products are made in this country is being redrawn. The nation’s biggest cities show the biggest manufacturing job losses. Click Here to...

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Day In The Life: Immigrant, Woman And Director Of Manufacturing Chainsaws

Stihl’s States-side headquarters is cranking out chainsaws and power tools — down to the pistons, plastics and rope — at its 150-square-acre complex in Virginia Beach, VA. For the director of manufacturing, it’s a lot of ground to cover in 3.5-inch heels. Lorraine Wagner commands the extensive operation. The highest-ranking female of a 1,772-person staff, she oversees nearly 900 skilled laborers and engineers (70% of whom are male), who each day craft about 1,000 chainsaws and other tools, such as the handheld trimmers and leaf blowers perhaps you wielded this fall. Wagner, 44, has helmed the well-oiled machine for...

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2017 Manufacturing Trends

There are many opportunities that lie ahead for the manufacturing industry. These include disruptive processes such as additive manufacturing and the internet of things as well as newly created materials that bring substantial benefits to end users. Along with these opportunities come challenges. Among them are an increasing demand for precision, the need to improve the speed of the additive process, the desire to increase throughput, and, of course, the need to do all this profitably. As if these manufacturing-based challenges weren’t enough, there are also outside issues that must be addressed, including a regulatory and policy environment that...

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November 2016 Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®

PMI® at 53.2% New Orders, Production and Employment Growing Inventories Contracting Supplier Deliveries Slowing (Tempe, Arizona) — Economic activity in the manufacturing sector expanded in November, and the overall economy grew for the 90th consecutive month, say the nation’s supply executives in the latest Manufacturing ISM® Report On Business®. The report was issued today by Bradley J. Holcomb, CPSM, CPSD, chair of the Institute for Supply Management® (ISM®) Manufacturing Business Survey Committee. “The November PMI® registered 53.2 percent, an increase of 1.3 percentage points from the October reading of 51.9 percent. The New Orders Index registered 53 percent, an increase of 0.9 percentage point from the October reading...

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Where Manufacturing Isn’t Dead

For almost a century, life in Alexander City, Alabama, revolved around Russell Corp. The athletic-wear maker was headquartered in the town of 15,000, and employed 7,200 people there. “I became mayor in 1996, and all the mayor of Alex City had to do was please Russell, to be honest,” recalled Don McClellan when [the author] visited last Tuesday. In 1998, Russell announced that it was cutting 4,000 jobs and shifting production abroad. The job cuts continued after that, the result partly of broader apparel industry trends but also of Russell’s struggles to compete with Nike, Adidas and upstart Under Armour. Russell moved its headquarters...

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The Secrets of the System: Manufacturing

As the United States seeks to reinvigorate its job market and move past economic recession, MIT News examines manufacturing’s role in the country’s economic future through this series on work at the Institute around manufacturing. “Everyone, take your order slips and move the shipment to the left,” says Nelson Repenning, a professor of systems dynamics at the MIT Sloan School of Management. “Factories, brew beer.” With that, six groups of high-achieving managers from a major multinational firm, ensconced in MIT’s Building E62, check some small slips of paper, move piles of red chips along the tables where they are seated, and...

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The Voice of Small Manufacturing

America’s success was built by small manufacturers with big dreams. And today, our nation relies on their ingenuity and innovation. More than 90 percent of the National Association of Manufacturers’ 14,000 members are small to medium-sized businesses. Our organization’s mission is to ensure that manufacturers of all sizes speak together with a single voice. From regulatory reform to business tax modernization, our pro-growth agenda is advancing the priorities and policies that will allow our industry to thrive and create jobs. We invite you to join us in unleashing the power of manufacturing—and the Power of Small. Click Here to...

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How U.S. Manufacturing Is About to Get Smarter

Here’s a paradox of America’s highly automated, increasingly labor-independent manufacturing: While sophisticated, for the most part, it isn’t all that high-tech. Picture metal-stamping machines in an auto-parts factory that can easily have a long useful life of up to 40 years. Now picture the assembly line just outside Austin, Texas, where Samsung Electronics Co. makes core chips for Apple Inc.’s iPhones. I toured the facility last summer. It is a pristine white environment filled with WALL-E-like robots ferrying boxes full of silicon wafers from one station to the next. Every detail of the factory is measured by sensors pouring...

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Is Industrial Computing Taking the ‘Man’ Out of Manufacturing?

Earlier this year, CNN Money posted a report online with a rather depressing headline – ‘The US has lost 5 million manufacturing jobs since 2000.’ Referring to government data, CNN Money cited that in 1960 approximately 1 in 4 Americans had a job in manufacturing. Fast-forward to 2016, fewer than one in 10 are employed in the US manufacturing sector. However, this is not a trend exclusive to the US, the manufacturing workforce across much of Europe is said to be shrinking, while the trend continues in East-Asian countries, according to Bloomberg. CNN Money partly attributes the decline in manufacturing jobs to...

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Manufacturing Marketers See Content Marketing Breakthrough [Research]

Last year, the results of the Content Marketing Institute’s annual content marketing survey indicated that manufacturing marketers were stuck when it came to content marketing. Fewer than 20% said their organization was effective at content marketing or that they had a documented content marketing strategy. What a difference a year makes! Let’s take a look at some of the reasons why manufacturers have made progress over the last year with content marketing, as reported in today’s release of Manufacturing Content Marketing: 2017 Benchmarks, Budgets, and Trends—North America, sponsored by IEEE Engineering360 Media Solutions.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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American Manufacturing is About Doing Good Work

Back during the height of the Space Race in the 1960s, astronaut Gus Grissom one day was touring a factory to watch workers building the very equipment he’d soon be flying. He was asked to say a few words to those working that day, and a few words is what they got. He told them all, simply, “Do good work.” It was just three words, but those words became a rallying cry of sorts for aerospace manufacturing, right through the moment in July 1969 when the United States won the race by beating the Soviet Union to the moon....

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How Important Is U.S. Manufacturing Today?

Manufactured goods are ubiquitous at home, in transit, and at work, but the narrow definition of manufacturing industries in national statistics implies that the sector is of only minor importance to economic activity. The traditional finding is that manufacturers’ proportion of gross domestic product (GDP) is only about 11% and manufacturing’s share of economy-wide full-time equivalent employment is just 9%. Since this excludes manufacturing activities such as research and development, corporate management, logistics operations, and advertising and branding, those figures are merely the tip of the iceberg.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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Public Perception of Manufacturing Woefully Outdated, Says Survey

It won’t come as a shock to the  PlasticsToday audience that the general public has an obsolete view of manufacturing, but a new survey commissioned by Proto Labs (Maple Plain, MN), the on-demand manufacturer of prototypes and low-volume production parts, gives us some fresh numbers to contemplate. Notably, the survey reports that almost three-quarters of Americans (71%) do not perceive manufacturing jobs to be high-tech occupations, and one-third do not believe that manufacturing jobs pay well. Those misperceptions are having a negative impact on industry at the worst possible time: Over the next decade, nearly 3.5 million manufacturing jobs will need...

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2016 Women in Manufacturing Survey

In 2015, the National Association of Manufacturers, The Manufacturing Institute, APICS, and Deloitte released a report titled Minding the Manufacturing Gender Gap which  focusing on exploring trends and strategies to recruit, retain and advance women in manufacturing roles. NAM, the Institute, and Deloitte are now conducting a study to identify the impact that women in manufacturing have in their companies and in their communities across various roles. With the 5 year anniversary of the STEP Ahead Awards, they are also measuring the impact our honorees have had since their award. They need your help.   This is your opportunity to provide first-hand insights into factors...

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Public-Private Partnership Makes American Manufacturing Great

Like other advanced industrial nations, the United States needs to get serious about incubating American manufacturing innovation. That should start with a basic appreciation of today’s manufacturing economy. During the first presidential debate, Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump briefly discussed manufacturing, but little mention was made of the outsized role the government has played recently in mobilizing American manufacturing. This has been unlike any time since President Truman’s Korean War era seizure of steel mills. Additionally, the campaigns have been devoid of any dialogue regarding new technology that is reshaping the American factory floor or global economics. We need to know...

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Big Data Analytics’ Potential To Revolutionize Manufacturing Is Within Reach

The insights gained from big data analytics and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) to drive greater manufacturing intelligence and operations performance is considered essential by 68% of manufacturers. These manufacturers are planning to increase their investment in data analytics in the next 12 months to improve operational performance and gain greater insights into how they can excel. These and many other findings are from Honeywell’s latest survey, Data’s Big Impact on Manufacturing: A Study of Executive Opinions. The survey was jointly conducted by Honeywell (NYSE: HON) Process Solutions (HPS) and KRC Research Inc., from May 23 to June 8, 2016....

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3M™ Speedglas™ 100 Series Graphic Welding Helmets, Welding Hoods for Women

Power to the welding women! To acknowledge the unique contributions made daily by women welders, 3M has designed a worldwide first:  The 3M™ Speedglas™ 100 Series Graphic Welding Helmets – Women’s Collection. The team took direct inspiration from women welders to create a welding hood women in the welding industry can use to meet the challenges they face in comfort, safety and style. The resulting four distinct designs are an avenue for personal expression. Each design proclaims a characteristic welding personality, but with more feminine assertion.  Helmets feature an ergonomic headband that accommodates smaller head sizes Available with Speedglas 100V...

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‘Welcome To The Future’: Manufacturing’s New Theme Song?

Rapid technological change is a topic that even pops up in country music, such as Brad Paisley’s song “Welcome to the Future.” It provides a motto for the transformation of manufacturing change in a time when the Internet of Things (IoT) connects machines and buildings as well as people. In a recent episode of her radio talk show Coffee Break with Game Changers, Bonnie D. Graham opened with the song, which contains the refrain “Hey, every day’s a revolution. Welcome to the future.” In the episode, Graham interviewed three top executives in the field of industrial machinery and components...

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U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker Redesignates 12 Manufacturing Communities

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker [Tuesday] announced that 12 diverse communities will be redesignated as Manufacturing Communities as a part of the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) initiative until 2018. The communities were all initially designated under the first round of the IMCP competition in 2014. The Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership is a U.S. Department of Commerce-led program designed to accelerate the resurgence of manufacturing in communities nationwide by supporting the development of long-term economic development strategies that help communities attract and expand private investment in the manufacturing sector and increase international trade and exports.   Click...

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Where’s the Best Place to Work in Manufacturing?

The last several months have not been kind to domestic manufacturing.   Data set after data set has depicted an American industrial sector that’s at best spinning its wheels and at worst slipping into decline. And regional manufacturing reports from Federal Reserve branches in Kansas City, Richmond and Dallas have been anything but optimistic, with an anonymous Dallas industry respondent recently indicating that “sometime after the election, historical data will show that in 2016 the U.S. was in recession.”   Whether that’s true or not, there are already signs that the manufacturing sector has fallen into contractionary territory. A recent employment report from the...

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Manufacturing USA – the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation

What Is Manufacturing USA? …the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation has a public name: Manufacturing USA. Over the past four years of the program, nine manufacturing innovation institutes have been established or announced, with six more planned by 2017. These manufacturing institutes are public-private partnerships that each have distinct technology focus areas but work towards a common goal: to secure America’s future through manufacturing innovation, education, and collaboration. Click Here to Learn More About Manufacturing...

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Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index: Country Rankings and Drivers

Manufacturing’s ongoing influence in driving global economies With the release of the 2016 Global manufacturing competitiveness index (GMCI), Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (Deloitte Global) and the Council on Competitiveness (the Council) in the United States build upon the GMCI research, with prior studies published in 2010 and 2013. The results of the 2016 study clearly show the ongoing influence manufacturing has on driving global economies. Study highlights include: Country rankings and shifting dynamics among global manufacturing nations Top drivers of global manufacturing competitiveness  Impact of public policy Role of advanced manufacturing technologies in transforming the industry’s future The link between competitiveness...

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US Government Supports Advanced Manufacturing

Set to come to the end of its second term in November, President Obama’s Administration recently highlighted America’s capacity for creativity and invention and how innovative progress over the past years has helped continue to make the national economy particularly strong and durable. Notably, several aluminium projects are playing a key role. The President outlined ongoing efforts and initiatives at the third-annual SelectUSA Investment Summit held this summer in Washington, DC, before an audience of business leaders, economic development officials, and investors from around the world. He announced that the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Coalition (SMLC) in the U.S. would...

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Autodesk Bundles Software into Single Manufacturing Portfolio

As foreshadowed in an interview at RAPID 2016, Autodesk has combined all of its manufacturing software into a single portfolio for additive and subtractive manufacturing. At IMTS 2016, the company announced that a number of its CAD products would be bundled together in order to increase efficiency during the design and manufacturing process.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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Top 20 Facts About Manufacturing

In the most recent data, manufacturers contributed $2.17 trillion to the U.S. economy. This figure has risen since the second quarter of 2009, when manufacturers contributed $1.70 trillion. Over that same time frame, value-added output from durable goods manufacturing grew from $0.86 trillion to $1.17 trillion, with nondurable goods output up from $0.84 trillion to $0.99 trillion. – See more at: http://www.nam.org/Newsroom/Top-20-Facts-About-Manufacturing/#sthash.ARM3fMG2.dpuf

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The Differences Between Industrial & Consumer Marketing

Marketing is a tricky thing. Like business itself, it differs depending on the audience and their needs. Once understanding those differences, you’ll be able to grow your business.  Marketing doesn’t work.   Probably not the introduction you expected for an industrial marketing article. However, it’s a statement we hear from industrial companies on a regular basis. Many small to medium sized industrial businesses are hesitant to invest in marketing efforts simply because they fail to see any measurable return on investment. In many cases, though, industrial companies view marketing through a more traditional B2C lens, which is a problem, since industrial...

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This New GE Factory Is A Blueprint For The Future Of Manufacturing

Welland has been known for decades as the city where the rails meet the water. But the Canadian transportation hub, notable for a canal that links Lake Ontario and Lake Erie with a cluster of railways, may soon redefine how we make things. That’s because GE broke ground on Friday on its latest “brilliant” factory here. It will be located just across the Canadian border from Buffalo, New York.   Click Here to Read the Full...

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15 Facts Showing U.S. Manufacturing is Growing

Here are 15 facts which prove that growing U.S. manufacturing is good for the workforce and the economy.    What do economic growth, global competitive advantage, technological innovation, and high quality of life have in common? None of these would be possible without the manufacturing sector. As much as we like to say manufacturing is on the wane in the developed world, with the Internet of Things (IoT), there’s actually been a resurgence in this sector, albeit perhaps on a smaller scale. Click Here to Read the Full...

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Data-led Small Businesses Grow Revenue More than Data-shy Companies

MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Small businesses that use data to help make decisions are more strongly growing revenue as compared to their counterparts who use data on a limited basis, according to new research from Exact and Pb7. The findings show that businesses across the U.S. and Europe who lean on data insights reported revenue growth of 21 percent in the last financial year, as compared to 9 percent for businesses reporting limited use of data. Data-led businesses also experienced a net profit margin of 22 percent, versus 14 percent achieved by small businesses in which data has a limited role. These findings are...

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Through the Ringer: Cold Calling vs. Social Selling [Infographic]

It’s all the heat in the marketplace right now: social selling vs. cold calling. What strategy yields better results? Which one is obsolete? How to best use them? Cold calling may be the defending champion of sales tactics, but the new hotshot social selling has an impressive track record: Social sellers realize a 66% greater quota attainment than those using traditional prospecting techniques, 63% of social sellers report an increase in their company’s sales revenue versus 41% of non-social sellers, 75% of companies that leverage social selling report an increase in their sales team using selling in the next 12 months. Let’s throw these...

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7 Things Buyers Want Other Than The Lowest Price

Buyers want more than price value when making a purchase. When your prospects are considering purchasing from your organization, price will inevitably be a factor, but what is likely more important to them is a high quality product and the value that accompanies it.  The ability of your sales team to outsell lower-priced competition is vital to maintaining your bottom line in an overcrowded marketplace — that’s not big news, but how do you make it happen? The key to maintaining higher margins falls into the hands of your organization’s sellers and their ability to justify your price by offering...

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Why Manufacturers Must Embrace Smart Operations

Smart operations is an emerging strategy in manufacturing that marries continuous improvement with real-time big data to “super charge” the value chain. Smart operations applies to the whole value chain, not to just inside the factory walls, although it’s sometimes referred to as the industrial internet, connected manufacturing, and industry 4.0. Smart operations is a process improvement method that separates manufacturers who thrive from those that merely survive, according to The Rise of Smart Operations. This UPS study shares focus group and survey findings from more than 100 manufacturing operation professionals. The two key findings you’ll read in Rise of Smart Operations are: A widening...

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Manufacturing Economic Report, August 8 – August 12

This Manufacturing Economic Report examines the state of  global manufacturing for the week of August 8 – 12 and predicts the following week.  In the second quarter, spending on goods was one of the brighter spots in an otherwise disappointing real GDP report, with personal consumption expenditures up 4.2 percent at the annual rate. Last week, we learned that retail sales cooled as we began the third quarter. Retail spending was unchanged in July, with Americans pausing in their consumer spending growth after jumping 0.8 percent in June. This suggests that the public was more cautious in July, likely on...

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U.S. CEO Outlook 2016 | CEOs mobilize for the fourth industrial revolution

The Fourth Industrial Revolution is here, and it’s upending business models, blurring lines between industries and companies, and demanding an entirely new way of thinking about business.  KPMG’s survey of 400 U.S. chief executives sheds light on how companies are transforming in times of extraordinary change. CEOs say that rapidly evolving technology, and the speed of transformation it unleashes, are making the next three years more critical for their industry than the previous 50. While they’re confident about their growth prospects, they recognize that they are operating in a new world – and they’ll have to operate differently to...

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Chicago’s New MHUB to Spur Manufacturing

“MHUB will unite the manufacturing sector with our vibrant technology-focused entrepreneurial scene, and will encourage new and existing manufacturing as a driver of growth for our city…” says Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Chicago’s burgeoning product manufacturers just got a boost as the city debuted a center called MHUB that will give them access to state-of-the-art facilities as they bring products to market. MHUB’s initial founding industry partners include Chase Foundation, GE Ventures and Marmon; along with partners Ask Power; Autodesk; Chamberlain Group; Comcast; Kirkland & Ellis; MINIMAL, who also designed MHUB’s visual brand identity; TMA Education; UL; and Wiegel Toolworks. “MHUB builds...

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How to Revitalize U.S. Manufacturing

Nine policies that could spark new growth in factory jobs and the economic benefits they bring. U.S. manufacturing employment has edged up in recent years. New policies could accelerate job gains and investment in manufacturing.ILLUSTRATION: HARRY CAMPBELL FOR THE WALL STREET JOURNAL After a long decline, manufacturing is returning to the U.S. Now it may be time for U.S. policy makers to give it an extra boost. The U.S. shed 5.7 million manufacturing jobs from 2000 to 2010—more than a third of the manufacturing workforce—as companies abandoned plants and workers in favor of low-cost foreign countries. But in recent...

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Fastener Fair Mexico: Show Overview

Fastener Fair Mexico 2016 Show Overview When: June 1-2, 2016 Wednesday, June 1, 2016 1pm – 8pm Thursday, June 2, 2016 1pm – 7pm Where: World Trade Center Pepsi Center /Maya 4 Calle Dakota s/n, Colonia Nápoles, Delegación Benito Juárez, Código Postal 03810 México, Distrito Federal About  Fastener Fair Mexico is the leading Latin American exhibition in fastener technologies. “The exhibition is 38% larger and will have 80% more exhibitors than the first edition in 2014. We are excited about the growth and favorable response from industry suppliers,” says Melissa Magestro, Executive VP of Mack Brooks Exhibitions Inc., owner and organizer of...

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“Discovering Manufacturing’s Tomorrow, Today” at the Manufacturing and Technology Show

  When: May 3-5, 2016 Where: Rosemont, IL The nature of the industry is constantly changing from the ever-growing skills gap to the internet of things, drones, driverless vehicles, robotics and a slew of technologies and practices shaping the future. Manufacturing is evolving and industry 4.0 is a hot topic. The best way to stay competitive in a market that requires cutting-edge shifts is to keep up to date on education and products. The IndustryWeek Manufacturing & Technology Conference & Expo is the place to go for learning more about these challenges. Here are 4 activities to get excited about: Keynotes...

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