Monday, December 26, 2011

FMA: Economy Can Grow If Addressed 'Coherently'

If the U.S. addresses “in a coherent manner” four key issues that impact the economy — employment, consumer behavior, global economic strain, and the role of politicians — the country can expect growth of around 3 percent in 2012, forecasts an economist for a leading manufacturing industry trade group.
Click here for article.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Nordex Receives New Order!

The Sun reported on Tuesday, December 20, that Nordex USA Inc. received a new order for wind turbines that will be built in the Jonesboro plant.  Click here for entire article.

Monday, December 19, 2011

R&D a Positive Harbinger of Industry Growth

Global research and development (R&D) spending is expected to increase by 3.6 percent in 2011 to $1.2 trillion, according to a report from Battelle Memorial Institute.  Click here for article.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Manufacturers Are More Positive About Economy in Fourth Quarter

Manufacturing activity is picking up and all signs point to higher production this quarter and next year.  A recent survey of manufacturers indicates that 72% of respondents expect sales to increase in 2012.   Click here for article.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Phase-Out of Incandescent Light Bulbs Affects Both Manufacturers and Consumers

Thanks to the Energy Independence & Secuirty Act of 2007, manufacturers will need to move away from incandescent lamps, particularly if they make use of 100-watt bulbs.  Click here for article.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Older Workers Engaged, Committed and Satisfied with Their Jobs

A new research study by the Sloan Center on Aging & Work at Boston College finds that employees 40 years old and older are the most engaged and demonstrate the highest level of organizational commitment, and that those 50 years old and older are the most satisfied with their jobs.  Click here for entire article.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Download State Wage Survey Info Here!

The State of Arkansas has published the results of its most recent wage survey.  The information for Jonesboro can be found starting on page 65 of the publication.  Link to 2011 Occupational Employment and Wage Survey.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Outlook for U.S. Trade

For the first time in five years, the U.S. trade agenda is taking on a new focus.  The shift comes after large bipartisan majorities in Congress approved the long-debated free trade agreements with South Korea, Colombia, and Panama on October 12, 2011, marking the successful culmination of a long fight by the U.S. Chamber and other supporters of the deals.  Click here for entire article.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

American Machinist: Nordex Contracted to Build 35 New Wind Turbines

Nordex USA Inc. will be supplying a total of 35 wind turbines to be located in Iowa for RPM Access LLC, a wind farm developer and operator.  Click here for more.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Industry Week: Rockwell Automation CEO Talks Policy, Pipelines and Football

Rockwell Automation Inc. CEO Keith Nosbusch echoes a sentiment shared by many leaders of large multinational firms that U.S. manufacturers are overburdened with regulatory costs that put the nation's industry at a competitive disadvantage.  Click here for more.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Spirit Fitness Breaks Ground on New Building

Spirit Fitness, based in Jonesboro, Arkansas, is a well-respected manufacturer/distributor of home and light commercial fitness equipment.  Spirit Fitness has been in business for close to 30 years and markets products under Spirit Fitness, Esprit Fitness and Xterra Fitness to specialty retailers around the world. Click here for story and photo.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Regulations, Corporate Taxes 'Strangling' U.S. Manufacturing

 A forthcoming national manufacturing strategy developed by the Council on Competitiveness will urge Washington to address policies that 'are very unfriendly to 21st-century manufacturing in America,' council CEO says.  Click here for entire article.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Safety: Foundation for Continuous Improvement

World-class companies have adopted a safety-first approach that puts a healthy workforce at the top of all corporate objectives.  Click here for entire article.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Centers of Excellence Deliver Value

U.S. manufacturers like Alcoa, Greatbatch and GE have introduced 'centers of excellence' to improve competitiveness at home and around the globe.  The common elements of a manufacturer's center of excellence typically include a formalized structure; people and/or assets with expertise ande a focus around a specific process or product; a shared business goal; and a focus on developing and sharing best practices.  Click here for more.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Powerful Ideas for Business & Education Collaborations

It's a dilemma that confounds executive leadership to plant supervisors, human resource managers to team leaders: How can our job postings go unfilled yet the national unemployment rate is hovering around 9%?  Growing the right set of science, math and technical skills may be the answer.  Click here for entire article.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Craighead County Has What It Takes!

Craighead County has been cited as the top micropolitan area that meets certain demographic requirements for a budding technology economy.  Click here for article.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Congrats to Employees at Specialty Machinery and Equipment!

EMG-SME promotes two team members who will oversee plant operations and engineering projects.  Click here for more about promotions.  In addition, an increase in production creates a need for a new engineering position, filled by David Wells.  Click here for more about new engineer.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Unilever Makes Further Investment in Jonesboro

Governor Mike Beebe came to town and with him, great news!  Unilever announced an expansion that will include a $40 million investment and 125 additional jobs to the Jonesboro facility.  During the announcement event on Tuesday, Robb Vrbicek, Jonesboro supply leader, Unilever, gave credit to their associates for the facility's current success.  Click here for more on Unilever announcement.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Survey Says that 600,000 Manufacturing Jobs Unfilled

The Milwaukee (WI) Journal Sentinel reported, "American manufacturing companies cannot fill up to 600,000 skilled positions, even as unemployment numbers hover at historic levels, according to a survey released Monday from Deloitte & Touche and The Manufacturing Institute."  Click here for more.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Good News from Colson Caster Corporation!

Colson Caster Corporation, headquartered in Jonesboro, Arkansas, beefed up their engineering team with the company's newest Engineering Assistant, Darlene Thompson, and added new employee Faith Taylor, to backfill Ms. Thompson's vacated Customer Service position.  Click here for the announcement and pictures.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Bringing Manufacturing Back to the U.S.

Trend in manufacturing to return jobs to the United States is good news........and makes sense.  Manufacturer with 450 employed in China is making plans to bring his operation back to the U.S.  Click to read more.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Optus - 20 Years and Going Strong!

Optus, a leading national supplier of new and refurbished business telephone systems headquartered in Jonesboro, is celebrating their 20th anniversary this year.  Click here for more on Optus!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Public's View of Manufacturing

"Americans remain steadfast in their commitment to creating a strong, healthy, globally competitive manufacturing sector in the United States, no matter the prevailing economic winds."  Read more about the public's view of the manufacturing industry today - Deloitte.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

NBC News Report Highlighting Apprenticeship Program

NBC's Tom Brokaw reported on the shift away from old-line manufacturing by the American worker toward information, science and technology.  How can the American worker acquire this new skill set for the next generation of quality jobs?  A registered apprenticeship program in Kentucky was highlighted on NBC news as an example of a best practice in helping workers and companies in the manufacturing industry become more competitive.  Click here for the entire story/video.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Congrats to Master Print Group!

One of our own, Master Print Group of Jonesboro, won a Benny, the highest honor in the International 2011 Premier Print Awards last month from among a field of 3,200 entries from printing and graphic arts firms around the world.  Congratulations to Jon Wilbanks, Owner/President, Susan Ishmael, Owner/Vice President, and their entire team - all winners!  Click here for more.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

For You! Resources with Contact Info.....

Resources for our industrial community are plentiful but sometimes not easy to track down.  I’ve put together a list of the most frequently requested resources so you have all of them in one place. Click here for list.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Inaugural Writing

Welcome to the inaugural writing of Our Industry Matters!  The information provided is intended to be relevant to Northeast Arkansas manufacturers and industry.  We will