Jay Schmidt brings decades of experience to the Operational Excellence team

When WMEP adds staff to our Operational Excellence team, our top criteria include strong manufacturing experience, a commitment to and proven history of continuous improvement and exceptional people skills. The newest member of our team, Jay Schmidt, brings a wealth of each. Here’s why we know he’ll be a great resource for Wisconsin manufacturers. He […]

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What level of risk are you comfortable with?

By: Kathie Mahoney I have been thinking a lot about the risks we take everyday. Some we do not even process as a risk. ​​​​​Risk is seen differently from person to person. Some people are comfortable jumping out of a plane. I have an extreme fear of heights. Walking up open stairs sends me into […]

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Manufacturers Identify Top Challenges They Expect to Face

By: Megean Blum and Nico Thomas When Nico asked me if I wanted to collaborate on this year’s challenges blog, my second thought after agreeing to the idea was a scene from the 2007 film “Music and Lyrics,” which I likely have not seen since approximately 2008. Why this popped into my head is unknown but ha! POP! […]

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Consultant Rick Ruzga brings new level of breadth and depth to operations team

Trying to capture everything our newest consultant, Rick Ruzga, brings to our operations team in just a few short paragraphs is a tall order. After all, he’s worked at companies of all sizes in a wide variety of roles, manufactured everything from hot dogs to helicopters and mastered every management trend of the last three […]

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A new face—and a new role—on WMEP’s business development team

Meet Craig Fey, WMEP’s new Business Development Specialist There are nearly 10,000 manufacturers in the State of Wisconsin. And although WMEP has partnered with nearly half of them, there are still companies out there who haven’t yet discovered the benefits WMEP can bring to their organization. That’s why we’ve created a new position: Business Development […]

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Wisconsin Automation Implementation Grant 

Effective immediately the WEDC working with  the Wisconsin MEP Network, including: WMEP Manufacturing Solutions & UW-Stout Manufacturing Outreach Center, is offering the Wisconsin Automation Implementation Grant to help lower the risk of automation technology implementations by providing expertise and offsetting some of the costs. The two-step process enables manufacturers to select the most appropriate technology, plan […]

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How Smaller Manufacturers Can Develop Risk Management Strategies for Their Supply Chains

By: Katie Rapp The COVID-19 pandemic brought to light a stark reality about current supply chains. As Nissan Motor Co.’s Chief Operating Officer Ashwani Gupta points out, “The just-in-time model is designed for supply-chain efficiencies and economies of scale. The repercussions of an unprecedented crisis like COVID highlight the fragility of our supply-chain model.” The U.S. […]

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Intro to the AS9100 Standard

If you’re a small or medium-sized manufacturer (SMM) working in the aviation, aerospace, or defense industry — or if you’re planning on breaking into this sector — it can be difficult to achieve a comprehensive understanding of the regulatory standards that govern this niche. This is especially true for the AS9100 Standard, a particularly stringent […]

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Introducing Christa Kananen

Have you ever noticed that people who are really good at their job, tend to bring not one but many skillsets to it? Case in point: Christa Kananen, Wisconsin Sustainable Business Council’s (WSBC) new program manager and sustainability consultant. A quick glance at Kananen’s impressive resume highlights her strong manufacturing capabilities at Green Bay Packaging. […]

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Improving Employee Retention In Manufacturing

Competing for talent in a tight labor market is challenging enough, but once Wisconsin manufacturers have success in attracting employees, it becomes increasingly important to then focus on retention strategies. There are several factors that companies have control over as it relates to retaining employees, starting with the onboarding process for new hires. “This ultimately […]

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