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Why You Know More About Industry 4.0 Than You Think

Posted by IMEC on Dec 5, 2019 9:48:13 AM

This is an original article by Aaron Fox, President of Oregon MEP.

If industrial manufacturing had a buzzword of the decade, it might be “Industry 4.0.” The concept is inescapable, yet it can be hard to define, especially for small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs). After all, SMMs’ capabilities, needs, and budgets look very different from the large companies who often drive the latest innovations and trends. However, Industry 4.0 is so pervasive that many smaller manufacturers know more about the technologies than they might think. Below, we define Industry 4.0, then explore ways that SMMs can and do implement it already.

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ISO 9001 and the Power of a T-Shirt

Posted by IMEC on Nov 25, 2019 12:36:57 PM

This is an original article by Robin Friestad of Quality Time Consulting.

I’ve recently taken the plunge into starting my own business. Part of what I’m learning to do is to “sell” what I love best. Twenty years ago, I would have been dumbfounded to predict that I would want to make a living out of ISO 9001 implementations and Internal Audits. I mean – I had been through a major implementation, several surveillance audits, and a couple re-registration audits at a Fortune 500 company. They were never pleasant. Oh, it wasn’t the external registrar, it was my upper management fretting about whether we would “pass” or not. I even came into work during my maternity leave to lend some confidence to my General Manager that it was going to be ok.

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The Importance of Productivity

Posted by IMEC on Nov 8, 2019 9:38:59 AM

This is an original article taken from the NIST Manufacturing Innovation blog.

Productivity matters. It matters a lot. Yet it often seems that folks talk about productivity, but don’t do anything about it.  At least, it feels that way to me when I go outside of the MEP National Network™, where we’re always focused on enhancing manufacturing productivity. And you could say that productivity is a personal crusade for me, as is evident in blogs I’ve written over the last few years.

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The Food Safety Modernization Act in a Nutshell

Posted by IMEC on Oct 25, 2019 10:44:38 AM

This is an original article the NIST Manufacturing Innovation blog, written by Dileet Thatte.

According to information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every year 48 million people in the U.S. get sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die from foodborne diseases. That means 1 in 6 people in the U.S. get sick from contaminated food every 12 months. These statistics are important to take note of and address since the U.S. food supply also represents a huge economic asset, contributing almost $1 trillion to the national gross domestic product (GDP) each year.

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The 5 Common Cybersecurity Threats to Manufacturers

Posted by IMEC on Oct 17, 2019 11:37:58 AM

This is an original article written by Elliot Forsyth, Vice President of Business Operations at the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center (The Center), part of the MEP National Network.

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The Bus Factor - Talent and Succession Planning to Build Your Leadership Pipeline

Posted by IMEC on Oct 8, 2019 10:19:09 AM

This is an original article written by Gina McClowry.

When I was leading Organizational Development strategies at my former company, we used to call it the “getting hit by a bus” scenario. Then someone decided that was too morbid so it was rephrased to the “winning the lottery” scenario. In either case, we used the scenario to help the C suite and other senior leaders to think through who would replace their most critical employees if they no longer worked at the company. If your best and brightest employee won the lottery one evening and didn’t show up for work the next day, how would operations continue with minimal disruption to employees, customers, and stakeholders?

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America's Promise Grant: Building a Talent Pipeline in the Calumet Region

Posted by IMEC on Oct 2, 2019 12:02:42 PM

Originally written by Calumet Area Industrial Commission.

In January of 2017, Calumet Area Industrial Commission (CAIC) accepted the call to action from IMEC and the Illinois Department of Labor to administer America's Promise Grant (APG) to underemployed and low-income individuals, plus recent high school grads. Since then, APG has helped further CAIC’s mission in leading industrial expansion and retention in Chicagoland and Northwestern Indiana.

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Considerations for Effective Risk Management

Posted by IMEC on Sep 26, 2019 12:06:59 PM

This is an original article written by Dan Brown, President of DB Performance Solutions.

Why Risk Matters

In business ”RISK” is a scary word. We have risks if we move forward and risks if we remain still. No matter what industry you are in, you are guaranteed to run into risks. As a business leader, how do you know when to take a risk and when not to take a risk? The answer is pretty straight forward - analyze and then manage your risks - which is certainly easier said than done!

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Regional Workforce Conference at JWCC to Help Companies Address Labor Shortage and Adapt for the Future

Posted by IMEC on Sep 3, 2019 10:50:00 AM

Contributed by our partners at John Wood Community College.

Regional companies will learn practical ways to adapt for the future at the “ABC’s of a Thriving Workforce” conference set for Tuesday, September 24 from 9a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at John Wood Community College’s auditorium in Quincy.

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How do you Add Value to Your Company?

Posted by IMEC on Aug 30, 2019 8:43:00 AM

This is an original article, contributed by Jeff Johnson, President of LMI Chicago.

Who has never said, “If I only had time, I would…”? Our bet is – not many! Time, the most precious of commodities that we sometimes take for granted, often squander and regularly wonder where it went. So, how do we take better care of time?

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