Recent Headlines of Interest
The Watertown Lean White Belt 2017 class (pictured) graduated and received their belts on June 6, and the Plattsburgh class did the same the following day. These 15 new white belts bring their new knowledge and skills back to New York Airbrake, Otis Technologies, Ansen Corporation, Powertex, NovaBus, and Camso to increase efficiency and solve problems. They covered basic Lean topics in depth including Value Stream Mapping, Project Ranking and Implementiation, 5S, Visual Controls, Material Flow, Change Management, and a whole lot more. The next White Belt class begins in early 2017. Contact Steve Lockwood for more information.
Four More Marketing Action Items for Manufacturers
Content, content, content, content. If you are not offering your customers the information they need to make informed decisions around your products and services, someone else who offers those products and services will. Learn more at this link.
Turning Your Movements Into Energy
Research that integrates nanomaterials and energy production offers limitless possibilities. "Power suits" are being developed that can potentially power a pacemeaker or other implants, or embed GPS into clothing for hikers or Alzheimer's patients, for a couple of examples. Learn more here.
Manufacturing Makes a Difference
It's easy to get caught up in the day-to-day, but every now and then it's important to step back and look at the big picture of how what you are doing is part of something much larger. More than 12 million good jobs, nearly 12 percent of our GDP, and a lot more. See this image for more details.
The North Country Regional Economic Development Council is looking to support projects that:
Help strengthen and grow jobs in the region's core industries sectors
Assist firms in growing exports and accessing new international markets
Align workers with in demand jobs and skills
Invest in critical downtowns
Promote entrepreneurship and innovation in existing firms
If you are unfamiliar with the process, the North Country Chamber of Commerce has put together some great information on what the REDC is, the application process, and some free workshops at this link.
An energy audit is vital to identifying opportunities for improvement. If you do not have a strategic plan to conserve energy, the MEP has put together this quick list to get you started in thinking about how that process could yield results.
Purchasing managers and companies guided by lowest delivered costs, rather than a deeper dive of life-cycle costs, can kill their companies. A purchasing culture that does not live by the principles of Lean, and depends on long, thin supply chains, can kill a business. Ned Hill explains in detail in this well-considered post.
The short answer is yes. According to the National Institute on Science and Technology (NIST) 43 percent of all spear-phishing attacks are targeted at small business. 55 percent of small and mid-sized buisness ahve experienced a data breach or cyberattack. 60 percent of impacted businesses are left severely impaired and struggle to remain in business up to six months after the attack. Keeping operating systems and software up to date and having strong backup are the best lines of defense. Twinstate Technologies Blog helps keep us informed.