Reminders

EMC Member Blogs

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Making sense of Big Data, lloT and Industry 4.0

By Paul Hogendoorn

What is Big Data and why should you care?


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The province of Ontario just announced that minimum wage will be raised to $15 per hour by January 1, 2019, up from the current minimum wage of $11.40. Predictably, the announcement caused instant and intense debate, along equally predictable lines. Since the same arguments get replayed every time without changing anyone’s established opinion, I think it’s a good time to look at things differently, and in particular, how they could (or should) affect manufacturing.


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What's in Your Company's DNA?

By Paul Hogendoorn

Businesses evolve over time because they have to - because times change. Economic situations change, as does the marketplace and the business environment, not to mention political and societal changes underway as well. These changes may cause us to alter our visions and re-evaluate our values frequently, but what they don’t alter is our DNA. Our DNA is what our companies were born with, and unless they are sold or die, it’s what they take with them into the future. Intentionally or unintentionally, our DNA affects and shows up in every part of our organization's life. So, what 3 or 4 characteristics most define your company's DNA?


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Meet Jim - not your average 'Joe'

By Paul Hogendoorn

We all have folks like Jim in our plants - people with a tremendous wealth of experience and potential, ready to be tapped into. All they need is the chance to learn a few new skills, and after that, who knows how far that momentum will go. All it takes is one person to get it started, one person like Jim. Who is the 'Jim' in your plant?


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Quantifying "productive" or "value adding activity" in a visual and meaningful way is often the first step in achieving significant productivity improvement objectives. The following study shows how one FreePoint customer successfully increased the efficiency of their critical processes by 69% over a one-year time span, reducing production costs and increasing capacity without incurring any significant capital expense.


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Effective communication is a key to success in business, as it is in life. Today's information technology explosion offers many different ways to communicate, but sometimes the technology gets in the way. And sometimes, time away from the office offers the best chance to learn something new, or refresh things we need to remember.


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Many of us were introduced to the manufacturing industry by our fathers, or even our grandfathers. With Fathers' Day still fresh in mind, I thought it worthwhile to share a few of the stories I know. Our society owes a lot to the manufacturing industry, and our manufacturing industry owes a lot to them.


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Getting to the next generation

By Paul Hogendoorn

Two of the biggest challenges facing manufacturers today are attracting and retaining young people. This didn't just happen all of a sudden - it started a generation or two ago, and it might take a generation to fix it. Wages are not the issue - it's part perception, part education, and part the failure of employers to recognize that young people are looking for different things from their jobs today than previous generations were.


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No offense to anyone else in the organization, but the people that add the most value to the product daily are the people actually doing the work on the factory floor. We need to start thinking of them as "value adders" and not as a "cost" or "expense". They add value; they don’t take away value. The more "value adders" an organization has, the better.


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Feeding the Wolves

By Paul Hogendoorn

There’s a great lesson that we can learn from an American legend that is often retold. It can teach us something for our society and for our companies, but its first something that we have to learn for ourselves personally, and often something that we have to relearn everyday.



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