Corning's factory in Harrodsburg, Ky., produces Gorilla Glass for smartphones and tablets in a process that includes melting raw materials in an oven at 1,800 degrees. While 400 humans work at the factory, only robots handle the glass.
Manufacturers using Quality 4.0 use data to prevent problems from occurring, as well as to look at production as a whole. "Instead of inspecting parts as the primary quality activity, these companies inspect their suppliers' quality and processes to circumvent downstream quality issues," write Stu Johnson of Plex Systems.
Companies including Procter & Gamble, Church & Dwight and Colgate-Palmolive are raising prices on consumer packaged goods in an effort to offset higher raw-material prices and loss of business to private-label brands.
Businesses can invest in top-notch cybersecurity, but human error -- made easier to exploit due to widespread use of the vulnerable Active Directory tool -- will render it useless. Ultimately, locking access to company data at various points will make it more difficult for hackers to act as impersonators and access sensitive digital information.
Fertilizer manufacturer CF Industries sells product domestically and internationally based on the varying market conditions of each location and the ability to store fertilizer in places the competition can't. The idea is to use data to make smarter planning decisions, rather than rely on customization, said CF Chief Information Officer Tom Grooms.
As global supply chains become more complex, manufacturers must identify suppliers at every stage, and the best way to do this is through machine learning, writes Tony Baer. PwC has designed such an AI system that has helped consumer products manufacturers find subcontractors several levels into the supply chain.
PepsiCo has designed its supply chain workforce to meet the needs of women, whether through leadership development, inclusion and STEM programs, or career forums. "I have 189 people on my team, and I have a clear idea of where my talent is and where they want to go," explains Jana Gessner, PepsiCo vice president for environment, health and safety.
Quinebaug Valley Community College in Connecticut recently held its first Women in Manufacturing Day for female students from area high schools. During the event, students had an opportunity to see the Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center and make whistles or whistle boxes.
New orders for manufactured goods fell by 0.6% in November, extending the 2.1% decline seen in October. However, core capital goods spending has increased by a relatively healthy 6.1% over the past 12 months, and overall, factory orders rose a modest 4.1% year-over-year. Meanwhile, the US trade deficit eased from its highest rate in 10 years, down from $55.70 billion in October to $49.31 billion in November. More importantly, US-manufactured goods exports rose 5.9% through the first 11 months of 2018 relative to the pace at the same timeframe in 2017. Learn more.