Manufacturing Leaders Buzz Sessions: Connect on Critical Issues

Posted by Simone Erskine on Dec 3, 2020 10:07:35 AM

2020 highlighted the resiliency and significance of our manufacturers. Illinois manufacturers have been on the forefront as heroes during challenging times, contributing to efforts to become leaders in global competitiveness. Manufacturing leaders understand that in times of uncertainty, it is much better to navigate the unknown together with other forward-thinking leaders who are finding innovative ways to solve current challenges and build a stronger future.

Dedicated to cultivating ideas and sharing knowledge that can help Illinois manufacturers solve challenges and thrive through uncertainty, IMEC launched Manufacturing Leader Buzz Sessions over the summer. Buzz

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Polish the Diamonds of your Organization – Your Employees

Posted by Amy Clary on Dec 2, 2020 12:50:23 PM

Research shows that there continues to be an on-going shortage of skilled employees. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, everywhere you went there was a “Help Wanted” sign, and even during COVID-19, there is still a shortage of skilled employees. So, what do you do about it? The first order of business is to highly engage the team you have, and the second order of business is to create a highly skilled, energized team of producers.

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Midwest Manufacturers — Make Do, Can Do, Will Do

Posted by IMEC on Nov 19, 2020 11:09:18 AM

An original article from the NIST Manufacturing Innovation Blog.

As a proud son of the Midwest (yes, my family does exchange holiday cheese, and yes, it’s delicious, we have no regrets), I was particularly interested in the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Partnership Extension (NIST MEP) virtual round table for Midwest manufacturers. All our nation’s manufacturers are important to me and, of course, we at NIST MEP love them all equally, but there’s always a certain extra curiosity about how the home team’s doing, isn’t there? On Aug. 26, 2020, we brought together manufacturers virtually as part of a series of conversations about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic impact. Our goal in hosting these listening sessions, which we call the “National Conversation with Manufacturers,” was to discern how best to support manufacturers through the current uncertainty and beyond.

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Childcare Options in the Age of COVID-19

Posted by IMEC on Nov 4, 2020 10:02:15 AM

Written by Chicago Commons.

As workplaces continue to evolve during this unprecedented public health crisis, IMEC continues to help with strategies and creative systems to solve the challenges businesses face.

To that end, one of the unique challenges that many employers and employees face in this moment is childcare options. With so many parents trying to balance working remotely with facilitating their children’s virtual schooling and other developmental needs, it can feel like an endless struggle to find the right path forward.

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How Automation and AI May Help Level the Playing Field for Women in Manufacturing

Posted by IMEC on Aug 25, 2020 12:27:37 PM

Written by Nicole Ausherman, Digital Information Specialist - NIST MEP.

Women make up about 29 percent of the manufacturing workforce despite filling 47 percent of the positions in the overall workforce, according to the Manufacturing Institute. While there have been periods of growth and decline, the dynamic is mostly unchanged since 1970, when women held 27 percent of the manufacturing jobs.

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Maximizing Workforce Productivity with Online Training Opportunities

Posted by Ashley Beaudoin on Aug 7, 2020 2:14:10 PM

Did you ever imagine that in your lifetime, you would live through a crisis that would change how you work overnight? For manufacturers, many were deemed essential and production employees had to remain working onsite through the days and months in which others had to transition to work remotely.

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Out of Sight, Out of Mind? Managing Remote Workers - Part 1

Posted by Lisa Kenney on Aug 3, 2020 1:17:19 PM

Note: Recently, IMEC began conducting a series of Buzz Sessions, essentially virtual round table discussions with a small group (6-8) manufacturers from diverse industries and geographic locations. Through these conversations, paticipants share their urgent challenges and ideas with one another. Repeatedly, the participants have expressed the need for solutions in dealing with a virtual workforce. The current pandemic has forced small to mid-sized manufacturers to work in unfamiliar ways. This 2-part blog provides a few basic suggestions.

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How to Host a Virtual Manufacturing Day Event

Posted by IMEC on Jul 28, 2020 11:17:02 AM

Originally written by Anthony Diaz, Strategic Partnerships Manager in the MEP.

Given the limitations with public gatherings and social distancing practices prompted by the current pandemic, it’s uncertain whether manufacturers will be hosting traditional on-site tours of their facilities on Manufacturing Day (MFG Day) this October. But as we have learned with so many other aspects of our lives, a virtual option awaits.

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Infographic: The Defense Manufacturing Supply Chain

Posted by IMEC on Jul 14, 2020 12:26:40 PM

The defense manufacturing supply chain is critical to both the U.S. economy and national security. Support is needed for emerging technologies such as directed-energy weapons, hypersonics and cybersecurity, all of which are vital to national defense. While challenges exist, there have been remarkable successes due to the MEP National Network’sTM dedication to assist small and medium-sized manufacturers across the U.S. and in Puerto Rico. Manufacturers assisted have included those that supply a material, component or subsytem used in a defense or national security system. The Network continues to provide support in building a robust defense supply chain.

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