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IMPO Insider

Daily industrial news and top headlines for plant and maintenance managers

What Enterprise Mobility Means For The Supply Chain

November 17, 2011 10:01 am

Enterprise mobility is an increasingly-relevant and ever-changing issue for today’s manufacturers. What are some of the key trends driving the supply chain market for 2012, and what can manufacturers expect in the future?  Grant Woolf, Vice President of Strategy and Business Development TAKE Solutions, Inc.

Does Starbucks Create Jobs For USA?

November 17, 2011 6:25 am | by Rachel Leisemann Immel, Associate Editor, IMPO

Next time you stop for a cup of coffee, you can help support American jobs. For the price of a gingerbread latte, you can do your part “to help get this country back up on its feet,” complete with symbolic wristband, available with a $5 donation and emblazoned with the word “indivisible.

Has Continuous Improvement Met Its ROI Match?

November 15, 2011 9:40 am

By Joel Hans, Managing Editor, A recent report from AlixPartners posited a surprising finding in the field of continuous improvement (CI) programs for manufacturers: Most companies engaged in Lean, Sigma Six, or another toolkit are achieving a poor return on their investment, and appear to be only partially engaged in the process itself.


Q&A: Improving Performance With Dynamic Capacity Management

November 14, 2011 8:35 am | by Phil Wolf, SVP, Enterprise and OnDemand Product Sales, PDWare

Decreasing cost and improving efficiency are always front-of-mind concerns for manufacturers. Phil Wolf of Portfolio Decisionware (PDWare) spoke with Food Manufacturing about how project managers and resource planners can best manage resources to maximize productivity. Q: What are the most common performance problems that lead to failed projects in manufacturing facilities? A: PDWare believes the number one reason that projects fail is because they are staffed with people who are not really available to do the work they are assigned.

Chemical Reactions

November 9, 2011 10:54 am | by Mike Schmidt, Associate Editor, Industrial Distribution

Manufacturers of chemical cleaners, degreasers, and absorbents discuss the challenges of trying to maintain or improve product performance while keeping prices stable. No matter the product, no matter the situation, everyone is looking for a good value these days. This fact certainly hasn’t gone unnoticed in the cleaning and chemicals market, where solutions providers pull out all the stops in an effort to maintain product performance while still offering a competitive price.

The $100,000 Haircut

November 8, 2011 5:50 am | by Anna Wells, Executive Editor, IMPO

“Justin Bieber’s haircut cost me $100,000!” And I thought my haircuts were expensive, which is why the above headline jumped out at me from Much to my surprise (and despite its odd keywords), the article this bizarre headline linked me to was actually about manufacturing.

Jobs: A Vengeful Man

November 7, 2011 6:58 am | by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D

When is the world going to stop talking about Steve Jobs?” “I don’t know, as soon as Christians stop talking about Jesus?” The untimely passing of the techno-icon has led to a deluge of skepticism, criticism, praise, and wonderment for the most influential man this world has lost in some time.

Turning Over A New Leaf

November 7, 2011 5:53 am

B y Krystal Gabert, Editor, Food Manufacturing The recent Jensen Farms Listeria outbreak has killed dozens of consumers unlucky enough to pick up contaminated cantaloupe from their grocers’ shelves. Since the outbreak, well over one hundred cases have been identified, and over two dozen people have died.


Are You Prepared?

November 4, 2011 9:50 am | by Rachel Leisemann Immel, Associate Editor, IMPO

Every fall, I try to get in a horrible zombie movie. During the movie, the characters are never prepared, and are always without a shotgun, a chainsaw, and an Oldsmobile Delta-88 with which to escape. How could they possibly survive a zombie apocalypse? My first stop in just such an event would be Westlake Ace Hardware, complete with their Zombie Preparedness Center .

Brainstorm: Remote Monitoring

November 3, 2011 12:18 pm

This feature originally ran in the September 2011 issue of Food Manufacturing . The Food Manufacturing Brainstorm features industry experts sharing their perspectives on issues critical to the overall food industry marketplace. In this issue, we ask: What is the most important factor food manufacturers should consider when implementing a remote monitoring system in their facilities? Ed Orvidas, Strategic Account Manager, Culligan International In the food and beverage industry, water is used in nearly every stage of production.


Generation Y

November 1, 2011 10:46 am | by Meaghan Ziemba, Associate Editor, PD&D

We’re in the midst of a new generation. While I hate to admit it, I am still very proud to say that my daughter is a lot smarter than me when I was her age. Heck, she’s even more intelligent than me now, especially when it comes to certain digital technologies that are available for playing games, reading books, and listening to music.

The Modern Clean Room

October 31, 2011 10:26 am | by Jonnatha Mayberry, Associate Editor , PharmPro

Clean rooms provide manufacturers with a clean, safe environment in which to create uncontaminated products. All clean rooms are not identical, however; they vary depending on the size or scale of an operation, the types of materials that are being handled, the operation’s budget, and various other factors.

Can Manufacturing Go Mobile? (Part II)

October 31, 2011 10:14 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor,

The "holy grail" for mobile manufacturing has always been the capability to completely perform one's duties — say, as a plant manager — from the road. Many think this capability is still years away, if not more, but some say that world is closer than we might think. This is part two of a two-part series on mobile technology in manufacturing.


Can Manufacturing Go Mobile?

October 31, 2011 4:13 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor,

Manufacturers are going mobile — whether it's for inventory control, dealing with customer orders, or managing employees — with a growing network of software providers that are riding on the consumer wave. This is part one of a two-part series on mobile technology in manufacturing.


Who Would You Hire?

October 18, 2011 12:17 pm | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor,

Recently, I saw a burst of news on the issue of "long-term unemployment" in America. A frightening large number of people have been unable to find jobs for a year or more, which creates a host of issues. They are relying on government aid for a longer period of time (whether they want to or not), which costs everyone more money.

‘Lost’ Prototypes

October 17, 2011 10:37 am | by David Mantey, Editor, PD&D

San Francisco police enlist in the greatest guerilla marketing ploy of 2011. Looking for some marketplace heat on the product you’re working on right now? Drop everything in the office and head to the local watering hole, prototype in hand. Drub up conversation with a few regulars and point out the revolutionary manner in which this prototype, that you hold in your hands, will change the [insert industry here].

Getting Innovation Down To A Science

October 14, 2011 10:23 am | by Lindsey Coblentz, Associate Editor, Food Manufacturing

This feature originally ran in the September 2011 issue of Food Manufacturing . The newly-formed Institute for Food Safety and Health (IFSH) provides scientific solutions regarding food safety, nutrition and processing technology through the collaboration of the food industry, government and academics.


The Amphibious Aircraft

October 11, 2011 12:27 pm | by Meaghan Ziemba, Associate Editor, PD&D

A rule change by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) back in 2004 has created a new category of aircraft called the Light Sport Aircraft Category, and a new kind of pilot license called the Sport Pilot License. The FAA intended for these two changes to help make recreational flying more accessible and safer for consumers passionate about flying.

Netflix: It’s Eight Bucks, Deal With It

October 7, 2011 9:16 am

By David Mantey, Editor, PD&D For a bit more than the cost of a trade show cup of soup, Netflix will stream an infinite amount of content for you to mainline into your brain on a monthly basis. The amount of content specified may be an exaggeration, but I challenge anyone to try and tear through the Netflix archive in one month.

Netflix: Knee, Meet Shotgun

October 7, 2011 9:12 am | by Joel Hans, Managing Editor,

A lot of people have shared their word about Netflix lately, but I'd like to take my turn at the lectern and offer an opinion as to how badly the company has recently shot itself in the foot. In fact, that cliché hardly even fits -- it's more like taking a shotgun to the knee. Regardless, I think their failures are a good lesson for any business.


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