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Cost Reduction Strategies for Manufacturers

What is Cost Reduction? Cost reduction, as related to any business, is just as it sounds. The definition of cost reduction, according to Wikipedia is: “The process used by companies to reduce their costs and increase their profits. Depending on a company’s services or product, the strategies can vary.” (Wikipedia) While the Wikipedia definition is […]

Cybersecurity Starts with Your Employees

We’re all familiar with Smokey the Bear and the “Only You Can Prevent Wildfires” slogan. In 2015, Smokey got an update and the new “Receive a Bear Hug” ads ran nationwide. In the ad, Smokey runs out of the woods and gives a big bearhug to a camper for properly checking camp fire embers. The […]

The Benefits of Improvement and Coaching Kata for Business

Kata is a Japanese term that can be translated to mean “a way of doing.” It can apply to any discipline that requires expertise in a pattern of behavior such as sports, music or martial arts. For businesses, it is important to understand that Kata can be used as a stand-alone skill or in conjunction […]

Workforce Development Program Best Practices

Facing an often written about skills gap and employee retention woes, United States employers are faced with the daunting challenge of growing while having difficulty finding and retaining top talent. Bloomberg stated in a recent article, “The skills gap in the U.S. is substantial. The National Federation of Independent Business found that as of first-quarter […]

Using Continuous Improvement (CI) to Benefit Your Business

With the pace of change in today’s business climate, organizations that adopt Continuous Improvement (CI) can use it as a tool to stay ahead of the competition and keep employees engaged. According to Google, a common search phrase is “what is meant by continuous improvement in business”. Wikipedia defines the answer to this search as […]

Five Steps to Being a “Smarter” Manufacturer

There’s no question the digital manufacturing revolution is racing at us. As a small or medium-sized manufacturer, how close are you to already being “smart”? Here are five steps in the journey to becoming a smarter digital enterprise. First and foremost, be cybersecure. Cybersecurity is an underlying tenant of being a smart and trusted business partner. […]

Top 5 Myths On Why Manufacturing Websites Can’t be Awesome

We all know the image of Vermont as the quintessential northern New England getaway for tourists, from New York to UK. But if you live in Vermont and are tuned into the tech scene even a little, you’re aware of the parallel narrative of Vermont as innovation tech hub. Furthermore, Burlington made Entrepreneur magazine’s list of top-50 […]

Why Do Problems Keep Coming Back?

Everyone experiences problems. Some of us have more to contend with than others, yet often it’s not the size of the problem that gets us down, but the way we deal with it.  Structured Problem Solving (SPS) is a learned skill that helps you to step back and evaluate your problems, big or small, in a clearer, more structured way. It’s a “thinking […]

Recruiting Millennials for Manufacturing Careers

A key recruiting challenge for the prospective Millennial may be an outdated image of manufacturing careers from popular culture and possibly even their parents.  Manufacturing today is increasingly digital and innovative. Companies looking to recruit these younger workers must actively strive to prove that they value high technology and creativity as much as Millennials do. Using […]

Collaborative Robotics Enabling Manufacturing Workforce and Productivity Growth

In early 2016, the International Organization of Standardization (ISO) published ISO Technical Specification (TS) 15066, which outlines safety requirements for collaborative robots. The American National Standards Institute, ANSI, adopted ISO/TS 15066 later that year as ANSI/RIA Technical Report R15.606 (RIA is the Robotic Industries Association). These documents outline safety functions that maintain a safe distance between people and […]