Tuesday, August 9, 2011


We all know that manufacturing costs change rapidly these days, everything from raw materials to equipment, utilities and shipping. That’s where a company’s own fixed prices can easily get them into a bind.

In Production Machining Magazine, business expert, Mitch Gooze, shares some specific ideas that can help fabricators and manufacturers avoid getting trapped in a too-low, fixed-price quandary.

Here’s one example:
A common practice that is more visible these days than in the past is bundling versus unbundling. The simplest example is the airline industry. In the “old” days, you bought a ticket for a price and everything was included: luggage, food, a seat, and so on. Today, depending on the airline you choose, the fare is for the ticket only. Luggage (even a carry on in the case of one airline), food and preferred seating is extra. The airlines have unbundled their pricing to achieve higher prices. This has occurred because their customers focus on the price of the ticket to make their buying decision, not the total cost of travel.

You can read his complete article here


Manufacturers in the Milwaukee area continued to increase their production in July, but at a slightly slower pace than June.

The Institute of Supply Management (ISM) Milwaukee’s Seasonally Adjusted Purchasers Managers Index dipped to 59 in July from June’s PMI of 61. (Still, any number above 50 indicates expansion.)

According to the index, new orders, production, employment, supplier deliveries and prices increased in July, but at a slower rate than they increased in June. Customer inventories declined, while the backlog of orders improved. Exports were stable with June’s level, while imports increased.

The survey monitors manufacturing activity in southern Wisconsin and northern Illinois.

You can read more from BizTimes here


There have been a lot of innovations in manufacturing in recent years. Lean, Kaizan, micro-machining and more. Each of them with a specific set of purposes and benefits.

Here’s another term: Smart Manufacturing. This one is more than an efficiency program. Smart Manufacturing is the convergence of information, technology and human ingenuity applied to the inventing, manufacturing, shipping and sales of an item. It’s been getting most attention in large, global companies, but the same principles will apply to any size manufacturer.

Smart Manufacturing doesn’t replace Lean or any other program you have in place. In fact, those efficiencies will become even more in demand.

You can read more about it in this Special Report from Rockwell International