The MTConnect Institute has been approved as an American National Standards Institute (ANSI)-accredited Standards Developer, elevating MTConnect’s status in the national and international standards communities. The move comes in response to increased interest in the MTConnect standard from industry and significant growth in membership in the MTConnect Institute. This accreditation indicates that the Institute’s standard development procedures adhere to ANSI’s Essential Requirements for due process, which include openness, coordination and harmonization, and compliance with normative policies and procedures, among others.(more)
New Year's resolutions aside, as marketers, we are always looking ahead, thinking about projects, sales, the next big idea, the next breakthrough innovation, the next event. We’re thinking about our to-do lists, about the reports we have to provide, about our return on investment. The point is, we're always planning, but are we always planning well?
Your list of priorities might include:
• Increase sales.
• Grow market share.
• Raise awareness.
• Build my brand.
• Generate leads at IMTS.
• Be seen as a thought leader.
Sounds good, right? These bullet points make for great slides and make us feel warm and fuzzy in our executive meetings. If we accomplish these things by the end of 2018, we’ll all be delighted.
The real questions are how do we get there and how do we know if we did?
While the priorities listed above are all desirable outcomes for any business, they are not specific enough to be fully understood by your team, nor are they stated in such a way that they can be measured. They also reflect a mix of business goals and supporting objectives, which are very different things and should be treated as such. In the simplest terms, business goals are big, they affect the entire organization and its place in the market. Objectives are smaller (marketing, finance, human resources, sales, support, etc.), but nonetheless essential to the outcome - big picture goals cannot be met unless the supporting objectives are achieved.
Think of it this way:
Goal - Future state of being.
Objective - Measurable target for achievement and step toward achieving your goal.
Business is a multi-faceted enterprise and requires input and effort from everyone - from human resources, service and operations to marketing, sales and finance - it’s a team effort. Each team needs to clearly understand its role in the process. A 30,000-ft. view of key roles might look something like this:
Marketing communications - Create a favorable climate for sales and other business functions.
Sales - Sell and generate revenue for the company.
Finance - Enable sales.
Support - Enrich customer relationships, solve problems.
Human Resources - Assemble and maintain talent and cultivate culture.
Operations - Convert material and labor into goods and services.
Very different things, right? If you look at it this way, you can easily see why the initial list of priorities is utterly meaningless without context.
As you dig into 2018, think about setting measurable objectives for your teams. Endeavor to provide clarity on their purpose and the role they play in achieving your bigger picture business goals. After the dust from IMTS settles and you settle in to report progress on your plans for the year, you’ll be glad you did.
Stay tuned for my next installment where I’ll suggest ways to ensure that you’re writing measurable objectives. (more)
SMARTFORCE - It's a jungle out there
Greg Jones, AMT Vice President - Smartforce Development
We also need to continue to change perceptions about careers in manufacturing. An excellent opportunity for that is coming at the Smartforce Student Summit at IMTS 2018,
AMT's goal is to provide the programs and services that will grow members' businesses in every facet--product innovation, market expansion, employee development - and to represent and promote members and the manufacturing technology (MT) industry to the world at large. Find out if your company is eligible for AMT membership.
At AMT, we understand that our members have two main objectives in running their businesses – increasing sales and decreasing costs! Understanding this fundamental perspective, we strive to address this need in specific ways.
- Providing access to markets in the U.S. and around the world.
- Producing industry intelligence that will position your business for success and allow you to make informed decisions.
- We bolster those core solutions with unique networking and engagement opportunities, by hosting industry events; advocating for the industry; building a Smartforce; and providing access to leading edge, and potentially disruptive, technologies.
Anywhere in the world you want to be, AMT is uniquely positioned to build sales and support your business. AMT’s Global Services range from domestic business support to full-service tech centers. We provide access to markets in the United States and around the world.
Explore a foreign market by participating in an AMT/USA pavilion or AMT oversea technical center. Utilize an AMT foreign office or visit your potential customers where the purchasing decisions are made with AMT trade missions.
- Newly accepted production technologies
- Greatest needs and challenges still remaining
- Areas of interest within R&D
MTConnect is an open communication standard that provides the capability to pass data from machine tools to higher level systems for further processing using the XML-based standard.
The ANSI B11 series of American National Standards and Technical Reports deal with machine tool safety and specify requirements for both the suppliers and users of the machines.
The Metalworking Skill Standards are common skills and competencies a worker needs to perform well on the job.
Knowledge of the current and coming economic environment, as well as the manufacturing technology industry and its customers is the key to strategic planning. Gain this data and accompanying analysis from AMT's Global Forecasting & Marketing Package (GFMP).
We provide unique analysis of trends impacting your company, markets and customers.
- United States Manufacturing Technology Orders (USMTO) - The only valid benchmark for market share and the best barometer of your customers' business.
- MTInsight allows you to visualize economic trends, pinpoint market share and review potential capital investment worldwide.
- On-demand market research tailored to your company's needs