Manufacture Smarter Blog

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Spring Clean Your Office with Lean & 5S!

4/19/2019 - BY: MIKE BEELS
The idea of spring cleaning has been around for many years, when we commit to thoroughly cleaning our homes, room to room, top to bottom, including areas we typically don’t clean. But while this notion of spring cleaning is mostly applied to home organization, it also can – and should – be used to tidy workspaces. 


Strengthen Your QMS with Layered Process Audits

4/12/2019 - BY: STEVE VAMPLEW
Manufacturers face an ongoing, daily challenge to make sure quality is maintained in all of their products and processes. Scheduled management reviews and audits required by a certification body are not always enough to ensure quality is consistently being upheld throughout all levels of the organization. For those manufacturers who wish to go the extra mile with quality, Layered Process Audits are a solution.


Addressing a Different Type of Talent Shortage: The Soft Skills Gap

4/5/2019 - BY: KARA KUCINSKI
A massive talent shortage is posing a great challenge for manufacturers as they seek to hire workers with the experience and technical knowledge needed to fill open positions in their facilities. But now, a lack of soft skills, or interpersonal skills, among candidates is making it even more difficult to find the kind of worker that will help their companies succeed in the long run.


Achieve Autonomous Maintenance, One Step at a Time

3/29/2019 - BY: ROGER TOMLINSON
With downtime, profitability and quality on the line, failure to properly maintain and keep up with equipment can quickly lead to major – and expensive – issues for manufacturers. With this in mind, the goal to achieve autonomous maintenance is growing among manufacturers as they strive to reduce risk associated with downtime or broken machinery, while also improving productivity and extending the lifetimes of equipment.


A New Path for Automotive Manufacturers

3/22/2019 - BY: BOB JENKINS
When it comes to manufacturing, Michigan has a wealth of talent and skills. Many of those skills were established through multiple OEM automobile launches and new product developments. And while the 2008 downturn cost Michigan a lot of skilled performers, they have returned in large part.


Are You Using Your Data to its Full Potential?

3/15/2019 - BY: GEORGE SINGOS
A company is only as good as its data. Whether you’re trying to increase productivity, eliminate bottlenecks in production or grow into new markets, data is the key to driving improvements and maintaining success. 


Everything I Know About Motivation I Learned from Prison

3/8/2019 - BY: CHARLIE WESTRA
Supervisors are constantly in pursuit of finding the perfect recipe to motivate problem people. Whether it’s a stereotypical millennial or an old-timer who is stuck in their ways, the question is the same: How do I get someone – anyone – to follow and execute my direction? It’s one of the most important and difficult questions for leaders to answer.


ISO: Leave the Pyramids to the Pharaohs

3/1/2019 - BY: ANDY NICHOLS
ISO 9001 was released with the visual metaphor of a pyramid often being used to represent the documentation requirements of the standard for Quality Management Systems (QMS). Despite not being a model directly described in the ISO standard or any related guidance, like ISO 9004, some quality teams preferred to envision the hierarchy of documents mentioned in ISO 9001 as a pyramid.


Death of a (Stereotypical) Salesman

2/22/2019 - BY: BRIAN MAMO
Over the years, salespeople have been unfairly labeled as pushy and dishonest. Unfortunately, these common stereotypes do not reflect the true purpose and goal of what salespeople do: Help businesses and consumers thrive.


Looking to Diversify Industries? Consider Aerospace

2/15/2019 - BY: RON QUINKERT
As we discussed in a recent blog, many manufacturers are deciding now is the time to diversify. With a potential recession on the horizon, organizations are faced with a few different diversification options to pursue: develop new types of products, sell to new geographic areas or expand into new industries.


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