Tag : tag team manufacturing

cnc milling machine - spindle with cutter, flying metal splinter

What geographical areas in the US have the biggest increase in manufacturing?

In the US, the auto industry is currently experiencing a resurgence with the introduction of CNC manufacturing and under the backing of rising consumer confidence, low-interest rates, and the need to replace older cars.
As CNC automation leads the way in spurring industrialization in the U.S., several regions are seen as major players in manufacturing, in this huge economy.

Michigan

During the recession, this area lost most of its manufacturing jobs, but it has since been able to recover 40% of these. It is currently leading in the generation of new manufacturing jobs. America has 70 metropolitan areas for manufacturing employment growth with Detroit-Dearborn-Livonia metropolitan area taking the top spot.
So far, this territory has created more than 89,300 jobs, and this has reversed the overall decline in employment, which is partly attributed to the advent of CNC machining. Detroit is in second place after Silicon Valley in the concentration of engineers, and there are many skilled workers here. The implication is that manufacturing in the USA is well endowed with a knowledgeable workforce.
Warren-Troy-Farmington and Grand Rapids-Wyoming are other areas within Detroit playing a significant role in the growth of the manufacturing sector.

Toledo, Ohio

Among the mid-sized cities in the U.S. Toledo is leading in industrial employment and is located 60 miles from Detroit.

Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro, Tennessee

The Southeastern region is another US manufacturing hotspot, as a result of several establishments by major investors from Japan and Germany among others. Within Central Tennessee, small domestic parts companies continue to thrive thanks to the presence of Bridgestone and Nissan manufacturing plants. This is where you find Nissan’s U.S. headquarters since its relocation from Southern California.

Louisville, Kentucky

The region is supporting major domestic auto makers such as Ford which employs more than 14,000 workers, making it one of the largest MSAs. The area leads the park as one with the highest number of employees in “advanced industries,” which are technically oriented parts of the factory economy and tend to pay workers better.

Savannah, Georgia, Colombia, South Carolina., and Charleston, South Carolina

In second position among mid-sized industrial hubs is Savannah, Ga., which acts as a major center for German car companies. On the other hand, expansion of aerospace suppliers and Boeing in Charleston, S.C., places the area among leaders in manufacturing in the United States. The revolution of industrialization in each of these locations did not happen until recently when the growth of workforces is being experienced.

Cape Coral-Ft Meyers, Florida, Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island, and Sebastian-Vero-Beach, Florida

 are also viewed as southern stars and outperformers in the mid-size industrial regions category.

Oklahoma City and Houston

These areas are home to the country’s oil exploration and drilling companies. What makes them top the list of MSAs is that petrochemical and refining industries in these regions have realized an enormous boon. Falling oil prices have caused organizations engaging in exploration activities to rein in their budgets, but that has not stopped Houston from ranking third, among those with the largest concentration of manufacturing jobs.
More companies are shifting to smaller cities within America, and though factory jobs may not be the central force of the economy, their impact is being felt by both small and huge economies.

engineering schools

What are the Highest Ranked Mechanical Engineering Schools in the U.S.?

Though it’s a broad field of engineering, mechanical engineers are generally tasked with the design, construction and testing of everything from thermal sensors to engines to heavy-duty equipment and machinery. But before mechanical engineers can enter the workforce and contribute to the revitalization of U.S. manufacturing, it’s first essential for them to acquire the professional skills and knowledge required by employers. By earning a degree from one of the nation’s prestigious mechanical engineering schools or U.S. manufacturing schools, students will have the necessary know-how on essential skills like CNC manufacturing, CNC automation and CNC machining to propel them to success in the workforce. With that said, here’s a look at the highest ranking mechanical engineering schools in the U.S.

Top 5 Highest Ranking Engineering Schools in the U.S.

  1. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT): Engineering education is somewhat synonymous with MIT. And when it comes to mechanical engineering, the school is the top ranked, according to a report from College Factual, which lists it No. 1 out of 270 colleges with such programs. In fact, at MIT, nearly 15 percent of all undergrads are working toward a mechanical engineering (ME) degree. But first you have to get in – and getting into MIT is highly competitive. According to U.S. News, only about 8 percent of all applicants are admitted.
  2. Georgia Institute of Technology: College Factual slots the Georgia Institute of Technology, or GIT, as No. 2 on its list of schools with the best ME programs in the country. Like MIT, about 15 percent of all undergraduate students enroll at GIT to pursue an ME degree.
  3. Stevens Institute of Technology: Located in the Hoboken, New Jersey, area, the school doesn’t just pride itself on having one of the safest campuses in the country, but with producing some of the best ME graduates in more of an intimate setting than the top two school on this list. For instance, in 2016, only about 150 students graduated with a degree in the program.
  4. California Institute of Technology: One of the neat things about those who graduate with an ME degree from the California Institute of Technology is that they typically see a 12.6 percent average earnings increase compared to other ME graduates. Oh, and you can’t beat the Pasadena, California, location of the school, making for great year-round weather. Another great thing about the California Institute of Technology is its extremely favorable 3:1 student-faculty ratio.
  5. Stanford: Stanford University rounds out our top 5 mechanical engineering schools list, as it offers both undergraduate and advanced degrees in the field of study. Stanford, an Ivy League school, also happens to be among the most prestigious colleges in the nation, coming in at No. 7 out of a possible 1,383 universities, per College Factual. It’s also the best university in the state of California.

Though we’ve detailed the top 5 mechanical engineering schools above, there are several more worth mentioning. Just think of these as our honorable mentions, a list that includes Kettering University (Flint, Michigan), the University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, Michigan), Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Troy, New York) and Carnegie Mellon University (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania).

industriallighting

What is the best lighting for the manufacturing environment?

Industries need high quality light to improve productivity and keep the workers safe. Industrial lighting needs to be durable enough to withstand the harsh conditions of industries, such as vibrations, high temperature, corrosive materials, dirt, and high humidity. In addition, industrial lighting should comply with the fire and manufacturing lighting safety requirements and be fit for the purpose for which the lighting is used.

Types of Industrial Lighting

1. High-Intensity Discharge

HID bulbs produce light when an arc passes between cathodes, making metallic additives contained in the pressurized tubes to vaporize. HID lamps are efficient and long lasting. However, they do not produce high quality light. Due to this, they are mostly used for outdoor security and area lighting.

2. High Output Fluorescent

These produce light when electricity passes between cathodes and excites mercury and other gases that produce radiant energy. This energy is then converted to visible light by a phosphor coating. They consume about 20% less energy than incandescent lights and last up to 20 times longer. The main disadvantage is that they contain mercury, and therefore should be disposed properly.

3. LED Lamps

LED lamps are an efficient, but an expensive lighting solution. LED produce very little heat. This means that they are able to convert most of the energy into light.

LED are about 1.5 times more expensive than high output fluorescent. However, studies show that businesses can recover the cost of replacing their lighting with LED in less than 3 years. The other benefit of LED lighting is that they do not contain any mercury, meaning that the company will not have to worry about disposing the lamp.

Since LED is non corrosive, bright, and does not produce a lot of heat, it can be used for many industrial applications like CNC machining and industrial inspection areas that require adequate lighting.

Why LED Is the Best Lighting for the Manufacturing Environment

LED lamps are better than HID lamps, such as high-pressure sodium lamps and metal halide, due to a number of reasons.

These benefits are:

  1. LED lamps are a more efficient lighting option. LED use half the energy that HID bulbs use to deliver the same amount of light. Replacing existing HID lamps with LED can reduce your lighting energy cost by half. This means that the investment in high quality LED bulbs will have a short payback time.
  2. HID have a high maintenance and replacement cost. While LED lights have an average life of 150,000 light hours, HID have a lifespan of only 20,000 hours. This means that your business will incur more costs because HID lights require more frequent replacement.
  3. Metal halides take about 15 minutes to reach full brightness when turned on and need about 20 minutes before they are turned on again once they have been switched off. However, LED get to full brightness as soon as they are turned on, and can be switched on and off at any time.
  4. HID produce a lot of heat. For instance, metal halides produce up to 350F of heat, compared LED that only produces 100 F.
  5. HID are more likely to explode during use. This makes it necessary to invest in bulb enclosure fixtures. They also increase the risk of fires in the factory.
  6. Metal halides contain mercury gas, which is harmful to the environment.
collegemachiningclass

Why community colleges are now adding machining classes to their curriculum

There are plenty of reasons why students would choose attending a community college rather than choosing the traditional four year college experience. One of the top reasons why many people prefer community college is the fact that it is more affordable than university education. Academic flexibility is the other major reason why people would choose attending a community college.

Manufacturing industry has been evolving quite rapidly the past few years. This can be attributed to the fact that technology is ever changing. The traditional lessons at the community college where students are taught how to handle tools, no longer cut it in the industry. It is for this reason that many community colleges have added machining classes to their curriculum.

CNC skills are in demand
One of the main reasons for adding machining classes is the high demand of CNC skills in the market. By using CNC, a machine is operated by an accredited operator and this increases productivity and reduces human error and the demand in CNC skills. To give their students a chance to get a good job after graduating from community colleges they must instill the relevant skills required in the industry. With a CNC programming course where the students divide their time between lectures and working in the labs they get to learn how to program as well as use different CNC machines.

Seize opportunities in manufacturing industries
CNC is the basis on manufacturing and there are plenty of jobs available in different industries such as machinery, aerospace and nuclear among others. With CNC automation training, students increase their chances of landing a job. Not only do they increase their chances of landing a job but they also receive a higher salary. It is imperative for the colleges to offer CNC courses to students so they can seize the many opportunities.

CNC machine training equips students with the right skills to start off their career on the right foot. Giving them the skills to take up ready employment and set for great work. A career in CNC machining is not only satisfying but also challenging. Entry level wages for a certified CNC programmer are higher than other entry level jobs in other industries.

With the proper programing and operating machine courses, students are equipped with skills to work in different positions. In most community colleges, their curriculum now covers the basic course and also advanced courses in CNC machine shops. In the basic classes, students learn how to handle routine maintenance, translating specifications for quality manufacturing of products as well as installation of devices. In the advanced classes they handle more sophisticated tasks such as turning grooving, facing among others. The advanced courses ensure that the operator is proficient and can handle any machine.

As the manufacturing continues to be shaped by new technologies, there is a high demand for well-trained machinist in the industry. To fill this gap, community colleges have introduced machining classes equipping students with the skills they need to get started in their different fields.

cncskilledmachinists

How can manufacturing employers find qualified machinists?

It is a common problem: there are jobs available for skilled workers in the manufacturing field, but there aren’t enough skilled workers to fill the jobs. When you hear reports about unemployment and jobs that are available in different fields, there is often a large discrepancy between the experience of those who are seeking employment, and the experience of employers who are seeking skilled employees.  If there are so many people who are looking for work, then it ought to be easy to find someone who can fill your vacancy, right? Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case.

In fact, in a survey of U.S manufacturing executives across a variety of different fields, including automotive, consumer goods, industrial parts, high-tech industries and electronics, it was found that finding qualified and skilled workers ranks as the number one or two issue facing manufacturing corporations today.

Why Skilled Labor Matters

The bottom line is that quality manufacturing can only happen when you have qualified workers. Unfortunately, the most difficult jobs for manufacturers to fill are the ones that are most necessary. CNC machine shops, CNC production, and CNC automation are all dependent on skilled labor. As a manufacturing employer, if you don’t know where to recruit skilled labor, then you may be faced with an issue of not being able to fully staff your manufacturing operation.

Old-fashioned methods of spreading news about a job vacancy doesn’t work anymore. You can’t rely on word of mouth or a newspaper post to bring you the candidates that you want. If you want the best people for the job, then you need to advertise the job where the best people are already looking. This means taking advantage of the internet, but more specifically than that, this means developing an online hiring strategy.

Here are a few tips to help you find the right candidates for your position:

  • Advertise on employment websites. Pushing your vacancy to the top of the list via a sponsored advertisement can dramatically increase your applicant pool.
  • Be specific about the requirements. Don’t be vague when posting your job requirements. Let the applicants know what you are looking for, this way your applicant pool is full of qualified candidates who you may want to consider.
  • Utilize a social network. Over 80% of adults use social media, so it makes sense to reach out to your potential applicants where they already are. You don’t want to directly poach employees from a competitor, but by letting more people know about your vacancy you may encourage someone to apply who hadn’t thought about leaving their current job.
  • Work with local schools. By partnering with a local school, you can ensure that students are gaining the skills that you are looking for, and then you can create a candidate pool of fresh graduates who are already trained in your areas of need. Schools are often interested in working with potential employers, as it encourages students to enroll if they know there are job opportunities at the other end.

If you want skilled workers, you need to put your job advertisement out there where the skilled workers are going to see it. Finding the right candidates can reduce your training costs significantly, helping you to focus more on production and sales, which is what is going to help your business grow.

urban manufacturing

Urban Renewal: The Manufacturing Movement From Urban Areas To The Suburbs

Open any newspaper (or rather click into your favorite publication) these days and you’d think the manufacturing industry is dying out. Headline after headline proclaims that manufacturing is a dying beast. Though the face of manufacturing is evolving and changing thanks in part to computer numerical control (CNC) automation of machine tools that have traditionally been managed by hand wheels or levers and more mechanical means of operation.

Though the method has evolved somewhat manufacturing in the United States is still undergoing a renaissance. Yet as the country begins to replace the millions of industrial jobs that were lost in the recession of 2008, it’s growing in part thanks to CNC production and CNC machine shops. These sectors have been crucial in bolstering the local economies of rural and suburban areas, while also reinvigorating the former ghost towns of urban city centers.

Indeed larger, more developed metropolitan areas such as Houston, Seattle, Oklahoma, Nashville, and Salt Lake City are reaping the benefits of industrial manufacturing. Their economies are all supporting higher overall job creation in the manufacturing industry. In some cases, such as Houston, the manufacturing industry is growing by leaps and bounds, exceeding the overall rate of economic growth. They also provide attractive living options and amenities that aren’t as readily available in more rural areas, which helps to drive a potential workforce into the region. There is often a domino effect to manufacturing growth as it often also stimulates positive developments in professional, business, and construction service industries.

Though the growth isn’t confined strictly to vastly populated, cosmopolitan areas. Manufacturing industry growth, aided by CNC production, is also impacting on smaller cities and towns. More mid-sized areas such as Tulsa, Anchorage, Baton Rouge, and Port Arthur and even small towns such as Odessa and Midland, Texas are all experiencing a manufacturing renaissance.

The recovery of the auto industry has played a significant role in bringing jobs and growth to these towns. Both carmakers and their suppliers, especially in the Midwestern and Mid-Southern regions, are bouncing back from the tough recession years. Cities in Michigan, known as car production corridors, are transitioning from hand or machined production methods to more automated, CNC methods which in turn has increased industrial jobs over the past few years. One of the most dominant developed urban areas benefiting from this resurgence is Detroit which has experienced an uptake in manufacturing employment and high-tech growth.

The success of large car manufacturing industries of the larger, more urban cities is trickling down to the small towns that are home to many of their suppliers. Auto suppliers in more suburban areas across the country and benefitting from increased demand for their goods and services from manufacturers in the metro areas.

In other areas, more diverse or specialized manufacturing demands and even business abroad are driving economic growth in development in the industry. From aerospace to automobiles, to fabricated metals, more niche requirements are leading expansion that bolsters smaller cities. Generally, lower energy costs and freer regulations are attracting business to towns that once didn’t have the capacity or infrastructure to handle the demand.

The revolution still hasn’t fully spread across the country, but in examining the positive correlation between both small and large cities and a rejuvenated manufacturing sector, the outlook appears positive to move forward.

Contact Tag Team Manufacturing today. 303-841-5697

cncmachining

What changes have manufacturers of cnc mills and lathes made in the last 5 years?

Computer Numerical Control (CNC) is the automation of machinery such as CNC lathes, screws and drills, which are commonly used in the machining. The above tools are used to cut metallic components to the desired dimension. CNC Milling machinery popularly referred to as machining center has been in existence since the early 1970`s and is currently used in the production of widgets and other tools. Most of the people in the manufacturing domain will have come across these tools since they are widely used in the sector, from small scale ventures to large scale premises. Since the inception of the milling program, there has been a considerable improvement and development on the overall structure and operation of the program.

Below we look at some of the notable changes that manufacturers of CNC mills and lathes made in the last five years.

CNC Turning

Turning is a manufacturing process in which bars of materials (metal, wood, plastic, or stone) are held in a chuck, then rotated, and the cutting screw traverses across two axes of motion to generate precise dimension. Turning can either be done on the interior or exterior side of the material, through a method known as boring. The process can also be used in the production of tubular components to various depths and diameters. Although turning used to be done manually, it`s now more common to see CNC machine shops using automated lathe which is superior to the manual process since it doesn`t need human intervention.

CNC Milling

This new development involves using of commands or G-codes. The alphanumeric codes are then automated into the milling machine with every code carrying a specific role to be executed by the machine. The machine then drills and turn along the axes to model the material depending on the specifics automated on it.

The CNC mills can either be controlled using computerized programs or physical overrides positioned on the face of the mill. Even though the computerized program control is the ideal method of the mill control, using the manual override allows the mill operator to speed up or slow down the milling process when necessary.

CNC Machining

In comparison to the manual machining, CNC Machining has allowed manufacturers to have improved productivity, accuracy, efficiency, and reduced the number of accidents, thanks to the limited/reduced interactions of humans with the machinery. Additionally, the technological advancement has now made it possible for the CNC mill to run unmanned for extended periods. But what is probably exciting about the CNC Machining is that in case the machine develops a problem, the CNC software robotically halts its operations and calls an off-site officer.

With the world consuming millions of products, which are in turn manufactured using billions of components, it`s imperative for the manufacturers to utilize CNC automation.  The CNC mills have taken over where human beings could not match the accuracy, and speed of the automation process. Keep in mind that the process of evolution of the CNC mills is still on as each manufacturer tries to outdo the other.

renewable_energy_manufacturing

What Impact Are Renewable Energy Sources Having on Manufacturing?

Manufacturers around the world are progressively increasing their utilization capacities of renewable energy to improve their competitive advantage. Industries use process heating systems to create finished products from raw materials. However, they need to efficiently use this power to reduce greenhouse gases and reduce the cost of production. It is alarming to know that the energy-intensive sector utilizes up to 75% of the world’s energy but only amount to 5% of all existing manufacturing plants. Renewable energy sources such as solar, wind, biomass, tides, and geothermal offer an effective solution. However, these sources have both positive and negative impacts on the manufacturing sector.
Diversification of Manufacturing Energy Sources
Manufacturers are now employing renewable alternative sources of energy to increase production and reduce energy consumption. Most industries are now using a mix of some renewable energy sources such as geothermal, solar, and wind power. As a result, they can reduce the cost of production and facilitate innovation and competitiveness. Similarly, the climatic effects of manufacturing are reduced significantly.
Development of Efficient Manufacturing Facilities
Most plants utilizing renewable energy sources have shifted their agendas to a more sustainable energy future. This future includes energy efficient buildings that are made from resilient materials able to withstand harsh climatic conditions. These buildings come with power systems that help in optimizing energy and reduce overall loss of energy. Efficiency in manufacturing has also allowed for CNC automation in industries. CNC manufacturing uses 3D movements to cut into any material. Once the commands are set, this automated machine significantly saves on numerous man-hours that would otherwise be utilized in performing these tasks. The time-saving aspect improves efficiency in the long run.
Less Maintenance Cost
Facilities using renewable energy pay less cost for maintenance than those using non-renewable sources such as traditional generators. These energy efficient facilities incur less operation cost since operational fuel is derived from natural sources.
Reduced Manufacturing Costs
With the seemingly unbearable rise of energy costs, most manufacturing industries have had to explore different sources of clean energy. These clean energy sources are attractive in the production value chain as they cut extra costs. High energy costs are unsustainable for businesses which have to compete with smuggled and imported goods from other countries. Again, clean energy sources increase their competitiveness in the markets.
High Initial Costs
Perhaps the main disadvantage of renewable energies is the high initial costs. For instance, setting up wind power plant is significantly costly. Some manufacturers cannot afford this exorbitant cost. For the determined ones, they have gone ahead to seek grants and investors who can aid the process of moving to a sustainable future. Nevertheless, these costs are sometimes passed to finished products hence raising their prices.
Although the initial costs for renewable energy materials and plants are relatively high, it is economical and beneficial in the long run. Not only does it cut down unnecessary wastages and costs but also creates efficiency in the process. Renewable energy sources are therefore improving manufacturers’ ability to produce more to satisfy the market demands.

Contact Tag Team Manufacturing today. 303-841-5697.

3dprintingmanufacturing

3D Printers – Are they a viable option in manufacturing yet?

While developments in 3-D printing (also called additive manufacturing) become increasingly sophisticated, debate continues as to whether the technology will truly be viable for manufacturing–  and when and at what cost.  Skeptics point to 3-D printing’s current limitations– primarily its price tag and concerns about the quality of assembled items, since the technology has been used mostly for small parts and prototypes.  It may not be a practical option for most businesses at present.  But with improvements constantly in the works, it’s likely just a matter of time before this versatile capability transforms the manufacturing industry.

Endless Possibilities

The technology is already showing promise in construction and spare parts production.  China and Dubai boast printed concrete houses and an office, respectively.  This rapidly-evolving innovation has the capacity to build parts more efficiently than current methods do, as businesses would be able to either print items on-site or contract with a nearby third-party to do it, saving time and shipping costs.

Industry leaders anticipate that 3-D printing will grow considerably over the next five years, revolutionizing every industry impacted by it, creating a host of benefits and possibilities.

Added Value

While the cost of a 3-D printer currently totals $1 million or more, rapid growth in the industry is expected to lower the cost, making it a viable option for increasing numbers of businesses.

Lower costs and faster production times could eventually make 3-D printing more cost-effective than traditional manufacturing methods.  Even when companies have to spend more up-front to utilize the technology, that investment will quickly pay for itself, especially as manufacturers can shift production from a made-to-stock basis to a made-on-demand basis.

Additionally, 3-D printing reduces the cost of raw materials.  For example, traditional production of parts made of various metals requires that these materials be melted down.  After a part is created, scrap materials must be reclaimed, often at considerable cost.  Additive manufacturing is precise enough to use minimum amounts of raw material, leading to lowered costs and less waste.

Because it requires minimal set-up time, 3-D printing expedites production.  As the technology becomes more widely available, it may replace the traditional assembly line.  With 3-D printing, parts can be produced without halting operations between phases of production for reprogramming devices or swapping out tools and materials.  Manufacturers will be able to fill orders more quickly.  Furthermore, they’ll have the choice of either lowering prices to challenge their competitors, or charging the same amount while reaping a larger profit.

As the 3-D printing industry grows, new competitors are expected to arrive on the scene, introducing more creative applications for the technology.  Additive manufacturing is currently out-of-reach for most businesses, and its widespread uses are still highly theoretical.  At one time, the same could be said for computers, yet today they’re commonplace and have proven indispensable in every sector of business and society.   Additive manufacturing is likely to follow a similar course, but at a much faster pace.

Call Tag Team Manufacturing today. 303-841-5697

oemmanufacturing

What OEM expectations from vendors have changed in the past 5 years?

As competition increases in machining across the world, it is essential to pay a great deal of attention to OEM standards – both minimum regulations and market standards. Over the past five years, OEM expectations from vendors have changed quite dramatically. Here are just a few of the modifications that you should keep in mind when you are assessing your quality control variables.

Quality Assurance

Led by the luxury automobile industry, the proliferation of precision automation manufacturing has created a higher standard for quality in OEM parts in many industries. Deliverables are now expected to maintain an extremely high rate of integration with factory parts, and OEM manufacturers are always competing to lower the error rate in batch deliveries.

Most quality assurance errors occur in high-volume production lines; however, as automation takes over for other forms of machining and general manufacturing, you can expect the QA standard to move up for bulk orders as well. In heavily regulated industries such as medicine and the automotive industry, vendors are becoming hardline about remaining in compliance with their various industry standards. Before choosing an OEM company within these industries, it is recommended to fit that company for an understanding of regulatory policy.

Continuous Improvement

Chief among new expectations from vendors is a dedication to continuous improvement. Fully accessible big data is now the norm for even the smallest startups in all major industries. It is a simple thing to quickly survey vendors on their opinions and quantifiable problems with a delivery. OEM companies now also have the luxury of surveying vendors ahead of time to take the temperature of market conditions and new product iterations.

Savvy OEM partners are gearing up for production runs on new product iterations years in advance, sometimes concurrently with the original manufacturer. When two sets of eyes are sharply focused on the market under the banner of continuous improvement, the result is usually much better for the end client.

High Volume Production

Being able to handle high volume production while maintaining a time to market and QA standard that is competitive in an industry is a feat not to be underestimated. When volume ramps up, small problems quickly become big problems. Close interdepartmental cooperation is necessary to ensure that a product does not veer off course before production takes its course.

Design Capabilities

More than ever, OEM partners need to have fit-for-purpose design development capabilities. The tenants of precise QA and continuous improvement can be quite a shock to a traditional production system. It is not enough to locate problems more quickly; the production capabilities of a company must be robust and flexible enough to handle any changes that need to be made on the fly.

The total capabilities of an OEM company become even more prevalent during high volume seasonal orders that require a high degree of precision. Vendors are being held to a just-in-time standard more often than ever, and they must demand it of their partner companies as well.