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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

China's Manufacturing Successor: Is It Us?

August 2, 2010 7:26 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO

“Looking for skilled, low-cost labor?” asks CNN. “Forget about India and China. How about Jonesboro, Ark.?” Interestingly enough, this is no rhetoric. This statement highlights one of the more recently publicized (but not exactly new) phenomena in manufacturing known as “on-shoring” or, in the case of Jonesboro, “rural-sourcing.

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The Big-Idea Man

July 30, 2010 7:46 am | by by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D

While the Big-Idea Man has become easy to strike through on budgets during a down economy, even the big idea itself has come under scrutiny because the industry’s competitive landscape no longer lends itself to the plodding and planning associated with big idea execution. He was an elusive character.

Arguing As An Art Form

July 26, 2010 11:03 am | by by Amy Radishofski, Features Editor, Manufacturing.net

My father was the type of person who could make a customer service agent cry. He would argue his case with manager after manager until he found someone who could do what he wanted. It didn’t matter if a sale ended months ago; we always got the sale price. When I got my first car, the dealership actually  lost  money on the sale.

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Message To The Next Gen

July 23, 2010 8:03 am | by by Carrie Ellis, Editor, Chem.Info

Dear Niece, Thank you for making me a very proud aunt. It’s my first time, and I’m extremely excited about the new addition to our clan. I plan on spoiling the bejesus out of you, being there for you, and doing everything that a good aunt is supposed to do, at the best of my ability anyways, and always.

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World Cup Oil Spill Awards

July 20, 2010 8:59 am | by by Luke Simpson, Associate Editor, Chem.Info

FIFA’s quadrennial World Cup soccer tournament came to a close a few weeks ago with Spain beating the Netherlands 1–0 in a yawn-fest of a final. The only goal came near the end of extra time and I celebrated not because I think Spain deserved it (I did), but because it meant that the world champion would not be decided by a penalty shootout — the soccer equivalent of flipping a coin.

Old School Vs New School

July 16, 2010 11:54 am | by by Amanda Earing, News Editor, Manufacturing.net

Recently, the United Auto Workers union approved veteran union negotiator and current Vice President Bob King as their new President. With over 30 years in the UAW, some critics consider King to represent the old school way of thinking — especially as he pushes for fewer worker concessions in a highly competitive, struggling and changing auto industry.

Lessons From The Fonz: Nix The Water-Skis

July 13, 2010 10:16 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO

I wasn’t familiar with the term “jump the shark” until just a few years ago. For those of you not “in the know,” jumping the shark is when something hits a point past its prime culturally, and anyone with a hipster bone in their body becomes collectively “over it.

Get Ready To Get Training

July 9, 2010 5:02 am | by by Joel Hans, Associate Editor, IMPO

It’s true—some U.S. manufacturers are having trouble finding highly-skilled workers to fill available positions, according to a recent article from the New York Times . It sounds unbelievable. According to the most recent statistics , there are 14.6 million Americans looking for work.

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The Tax Downfall

July 6, 2010 5:40 am | by by Amanda Earing, News Editor, Manufacturing.Net

Photo via flickr user alancleaver_2000 . The economic recovery may be in full swing, but many manufacturers are still struggling and some federal tax policies have the potential to send these manufacturers to the soup line. Of the manufacturers in the U.S., approximately 70 percent are mid-size to small manufacturers.

So Boring It Must Be Important

July 6, 2010 5:39 am | by by Jeff Reinke, Editorial Director

As we do our planning for the content of each print issue of  IMPO , as well as the overall strategy for www.impomag.com  and our daily e-newsletter, we’re faced with three primary marching orders. Keep it interesting. Keep in pertinent. Address the readers' critical issues.

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A Taxing Proposition for Medical Manufacturers

June 25, 2010 6:56 am | by by Kim Ukura, Associate Editor, PD&D

Although the health care reform bill was signed months ago, everyone seems to still be riffling through the pages trying to figure out what it means and where it’s probably gone wrong. Earlier this month the AP reported that  medical device manufacturers are “bristling”  over a stipulation in the health care law that would add a tax of 2.

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Wash, Wax, Waste Of Money

June 21, 2010 10:17 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO

When it’s summer and the sun is shining, there are a few things that bump up on my priority list. One is managing my free time to include lots of outdoor walks and runs, and then DVR-ing anything that interferes with Brewers games. Another is keeping my freezer stocked with various frozen treats… or at least re-routing home so I can swing by Sonic for a fresh fruit slush.

What To Do With A Clueless Client

June 18, 2010 7:39 am | by by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D

What do you do with a clueless client? It’s doesn’t exactly have the sing-song charm of asking what to do with a drunken sailor, but I think we’re two beats away from a viral video here. Okay, maybe the client doesn’t lack basic information processing skills, but maybe they’re looking to build something that represents everything you stand against as a reputable product designer.

A Toxic Reputation

June 16, 2010 7:46 am | by by Carrie Ellis, Editor, Chem.Info

The call for transparency and accountability is everywhere, and it’s deafening. And that means us — even as responsible corporations and/or environmental citizens, too, not just politicians. With the growing pessimism of consumers against the unknowns of chemicals, paired with the origins of explosions and oil spills, these trends could become disastrous for the processing reputation.

I’ll Take The Science Channel Over MTV Any Day

June 14, 2010 6:39 am | by by Amanda Earing, News Editor, Manufacturing.Net

I’m not a fan of reality TV. The catty behaviors, the backstabbing, the constant whining — I don’t need it in my life, nor do I care to watch it played out on TV.  But I do like watching informative TV Shows, and this past weekend, I caught up on a few episodes of the show,  How Do They Do It  on the Science Channel.

Keep The 'Baby Cage' Idea To Yourself

June 7, 2010 11:42 am

Recently, Time released its list of the 50 worst inventions of all-time , a dumping ground for well-meant ideas — however pathetic —that never really hit the ground running. In fact, many of them simply hit the ground, and from a long way up. Time ’s list ranges from the macabre ( Agent Orange ), to the annoying (Facebook’s Farmville game), to the nostalgia-inducing ( Olestra and Microsoft Word’s Clippy ).

The (Almost) Perfect Game

June 4, 2010 4:46 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO

As many of you loyal IMPO readers know, I am quite a serious baseball fan. In fact, I am pretty sure Milwaukee Brewers owner Mark Attanasio owes me a drink at some point; I swear I’ve paid a league minimum salary or two after years of dumping money into this organization.

Good News Is Not News

June 3, 2010 7:25 am | by by Krystal Gabert, Editor, Food Manufacturing

The most recent massive E. coli-related recall — Freshway Foods’ lettuce contamination — has food safety once again in the news. Whenever a major (or minor) food safety disaster occurs, the industry grumbling begins: “How come you don’t hear about the facilities that are doing things right? Or the millions of pounds of safe food that arrived in stores this week?” Well, because, “Hey, guys, this system functioned as designed, thus nothing newsworthy happened,” is not news.

Increasing Manufacturing Jobs Through Clean Energy

May 27, 2010 5:37 am | by by Amanda Earing, News Editor, Manufacturing.net

Desperately in need of new jobs to help sustain our economy, the U.S. government has been pushing for advancement in the clean energy sector — and with good reason. Most renewable energy analysts predict the clean-tech sector will grow in worldwide revenue from $116 billion to $325 billion over the next decade, making it the largest single industrial sector in the world.

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Washing Off All Of This Oil

May 19, 2010 4:55 am | by by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO

What’s scary about running a business is the sometimes latent and foreboding knowledge that there are far-reaching effects to everything . As we’ve seen time and again—and especially lately—natural disasters can have the ability to shut us down completely, whether or not we even operate in the hard hit areas.

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