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As a benefit of membership, SBANE will gladly post press releases from member companies. It’s as easy as sending the press release to SBANE and the staff will take care of the rest. To include your company’s latest press release here, please contact Sarah Henry, Communications Manager at sarah@sbane.org.

SBANE AMC Panel - Innovation Starts and Ends with People by SBANE Board Member Patty Katsaros

SBANE AMC Panel - Innovation Starts and Ends with People Recently SBANE brought together the New England manufacturing community to hear from companies using innovation to reduce costs, increase efficiencies, and train their workforce in order to compete in an ever challenging marketplace. The common thread for me was how the success of each initiative depended fully on the engagement of the people involved. After introductions from MassMEP’s Mike Prior and moderator David Graves-Witherell, East West Bank, our host, Mike Tamasi from AccuRounds spoke first about successes gained by going from practicing lean principles to engraining it into the very fabric of their culture. From top down and bottom up, they’ve committed to continuous improvement and live by their Core Values –Gratitude, Excellence, Team First, Initiative, and Trust. Walk through their recently expanded facility and it’s evident everywhere from the clear signage and organized, spotless plant to the friendly and spirited team members. Vince Carbone from Savage Arms demonstrated improvements through innovative production layouts that significantly increased efficiencies and throughput. Success with these initiatives came from both smart design and employee engagement as management entrusted the line staff to lead ongoing Kaizen continuous improvement events.  When factories consider automation to innovate, processes can be improved to make businesses stronger rather than replace jobs claimed our third panelist, Ray Ritter from McClellan Automation. The key to this, he emphasized, is to ensure proper workforce development is in place so the employees evolve together with the factory floor. Phil Papoojian from Mereco Technologies Group Inc. took on the challenges of rising healthcare costs and argued that companies need to be forward thinking in both budgeting for these costs and engaging the workforce to innovatively find solutions that mitigate the increases and satisfy the employees’ main healthcare needs.  This is imperative to attract and retain top talent. Finally, Scot Story from AMI wrapped things up with innovative approaches to customer engagement.  He showed how AMI builds trust and true partnerships by involving clients early in the quoting process and being as transparent as possible with pricing with respect to their costs. This allows them to team up with their customers to design the best product at the lowest cost for a mutually beneficial outcome. This open book pricing has served to actually improve AMI’s margins over time through strong, long term customer relationships. Each panelist had a unique approach to combating costs. In all, however, these innovative efforts only went as far as the people involved and committed to making the changes. Thank you panelists for taking time out of your continuous improvement endeavors to share your stories with the SBANE community!   -Patty Katsaros, Founder P.H. Koules Consulting & member of SBANE Advanced Manufacturing Committee   [caption id="attachment_5810" align="alignnone" width="150"]Pre-event coffee & connections Pre-event coffee & connections[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5811" align="alignnone" width="150"]Mike Prior from MassMEP and co-chair of the SBANE Advanced Manufacturing Committee kicking things off. Mike Prior from MassMEP and co-chair of the SBANE Advanced Manufacturing Committee kicking things off.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5812" align="alignnone" width="150"]Our host, Michael Tamasi, CEO of AccuRounds speaking about Lean Business Processes with their mantra of People, Process, & Passion proudly displayed above. Our host, Michael Tamasi, CEO of AccuRounds speaking about Lean Business Processes with their mantra of People, Process, & Passion proudly displayed above.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5813" align="alignnone" width="150"]Vince Carbone from Savage Arms talks about the value of continuous training. Vince Carbone from Savage Arms talks about the value of continuous training.[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5814" align="alignnone" width="150"]View of the new facility at AccuRounds, recently named a “Community Hero” by MassEcon View of the new facility at AccuRounds, recently named a “Community Hero” by MassEcon[/caption]   To read this post on P.H. Koules Consulting's blog, please click here.
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