Team Spotlight - Dean Harms

Posted by Simone Erskine on Jun 28, 2019 3:19:23 PM

Dean is a passionate and enthusiastic industry expert with over 30 years of experience and demonstrated success under his belt. He is driven by his desire to help people and believes in doing business with people, not companies. For the last year at IMEC, Dean has demonstrated his passion by working with and helping a wide range of organizations to create competitive futures in Northern Illinois.

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Digital Manufacturing for Small Manufacturers

Posted by David Boulay on Jun 28, 2019 1:08:18 PM

Smart Manufacturing. Factory of the Future. Industry 4.0. These are the buzzwords used by those driving the manufacturing world forward. At the heart of these concepts is digital manufacturing and design (DM&D). But what exactly is DM&D? And what does it mean for the small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) that make up the majority of the industry?

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Creating a Safe Work Environment

Posted by Antuanet Sanchez on Jun 28, 2019 9:04:49 AM

It has been proven that when safety is treated at the same level of importance as productivity, cost saving and quality, companies save hundreds of thousands of dollars daily by preventing injuries.

How can you incorporate safety in your daily work interactions?

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What Can Cobots Do for Your Business?

Posted by Simone Erskine on Jun 27, 2019 12:19:42 PM

This is an original infographic from NIST Manufacturing Innovation Blog.

Manufacturing industries as varied as automotive, electronics, chemical products and food already use collaborative robots (cobots) for tasks such as assembly, loading and packaging. The partnership between humans and cobots is an important one that combines tasks and drills with thoughts and skills.

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Getting Started with Journey Mapping: A Comprehensive Primer to Creating Your First Journey Map in Just Three Weeks!

Posted by Simone Erskine on Jun 20, 2019 7:49:00 AM

This is an original article written by Jon Berbaum, President of Highland Solutions.

Journey maps are very popular tools at the moment, and with good reason. They’re a simple, fast, and effective way to help a team understand the experiences that customers are having with an organization from the customers’ point of view.

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Are Your Customers Requiring you to Use ISO Standards?

Posted by Simone Erskine on Jun 14, 2019 10:33:10 AM

This is a guest blog, written by Alec Alessandra, M.B.A, former John Deer Executive, former IMEC Board Member, and Senior Strategist of Strategic Impact Partners, and Robert Pojasek, Ph.D, Senior Strategist of Strategic Impact Partners.

Many small and medium-sized supplier organizations are receiving notices from their larger sourcing customers to implement a variety of different international standards at their facilities. These standards could include:

  • ISO 9001: 2015 (for quality)
  • ISO 14001: 2015 (for the environment)
  • ISO 31000: 2018 (regarding risk management)
  • ISO 45001: 2018 (covering health and safety)
  • ISO 50001:2018 (covering energy management)
  • The Ethical Trading Initiative Program
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6 Questions to Ask Before Choosing a CRM

Posted by Shayla Kripalani on May 31, 2019 11:07:00 AM

This is an original article written by Megan Robinson, the VP of Marketing at @Revenue.

Still using Excel to track your networking connections? That might work, to a degree — but it isn’t scalable. You easily lose track of contacts, you miss follow ups and you can do better. Do you dream of a tool that tracks your pipeline, stores all your notes and automatically reminds you to follow up, or even does it for you?

That tool exists. Enter the Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system of your dreams.

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MEP National Network: Cobots Level the Playing Field

Posted by Simone Erskine on May 28, 2019 10:29:47 AM

This is an original article, written by Buckley Brinkman, the Executive Director/CEO of the Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing and Productivity (WCMP).

Reluctance to Employ Cobots Driven by 4 Common Misconceptions

It has been nearly six decades since the first industrial robots rolled on to a General Motors assembly line in Trenton, New Jersey. Today, a new generation of collaborative robots is changing how the manufacturing sector operates. These semi-intelligent machines are driving growth and improving efficiency not only for the GMs of the world, but also for small and medium-sized manufacturers (SMMs) as well.

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Made in Illinois Featured Company: Obsidian Manufacturing Industries

Posted by Marketing Support on May 22, 2019 2:05:00 PM

Obsidian Manufacturing Industries, Inc. is a SBA certified woman-led small business that offers a diversified selection of manufacturing products and services with its brands. Their price competitive solutions are appealing to customer’s industrial needs, whether it is workholding, material handling, precision rotary surface grinder applications or OEM equipment repairs and spare parts.

Several of their product lines have robust historical records with one dating as far back as 1916. This information has helped them serve their vast customer base with products and services that have an emphasis on durability, outstanding craftsmanship, and value. Brands include Arter Precision Grinding Machines, Magna-Lock USA, MagnaLift and Power-Grip.

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Transforming the Workforce in the Era of AI Expansion - A MAPI Foundation Research

Posted by Simone Erskine on May 21, 2019 3:10:00 PM

The following is a description of MAPI Foundation's research on how AI is transforming the workforce, written by MAPI Foundation.

Manufacturing leaders are seeking strategies and solutions to address a burning question:
How will AI transform the workforce – the people, roles, skillsets – in the next 5 years?

THE CHALLENGE

Predictive maintenance, human-robot collaboration, and generative design are a few of the applications of artificial intelligence remaking manufacturing. Expectations continue to rise for AI to unlock elusive productivity gains. Industry leaders are adapting to the technological change — AI and related Industry 4.0 and IIoT technologies — that will continue to reshape their workforce, either through the automation and replacement of some workers or upskilling and new roles of others.

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