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June 24, 2014
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rick_carter_mugForward Observations: Seeing Is Believing

By Rick Carter, Executive Editor

It may seem disingenuous to pluck a single day from the many in which you toil and deem it “Manufacturing Day.” But there is, in fact, a so-named day that since 2012 has successfully helped publicize manufacturing as a career. Because of its full schedule—a many-industries offering of open-houses and other activities in plants and schools in the U.S. and Canada—the “day” typically continues late into fall. So even though Manufacturing Day 2014 has passed, its producers believe the day’s intent, impact and importance place it in a separate league from conventional “recognition” days we may honor, then forget until next year. Click here for more.


0914bobwilliamsonmugUptime: TPM — A Foundation for Asset-Management Systems, Part III

By Bob Williamson, Contributing Editor

This conclusion of a three-part, special-focus “Uptime” series weaves the five basic TPM Pillars together in ways that can open the eyes and minds of those who are interested in the Asset Management journey—and help you achieve sustainable results along the way. Sadly, as discussed in Parts 1 and 2, many plants have boiled TPM down to nothing more than a standalone work process of “involving operators in the maintenance of their equipment.” Consequently, the benefits of the interdependent relationships among TPM’s basic Pillars are lost, leading to marginally sustainable results. Click here for more.


1409kenbannistermugDon’t Procrastinate…Innovate: Boots on the Ground

By Ken Bannister, Contributing Editor

Two topics have dominated the news lately, sending shock waves through homes in North America and elsewhere. I refer, of course, to the virulent spread of 1) Ebola; and 2) ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria).The world has seen some early responses that involve throwing a range of “high-tech” solutions at these two crises. With regard to Ebola and ISIS, we’re dealing with basic people-related issues that are proving difficult to mitigate from afar. Similarly, the maintenance industry has also been known to struggle with implementation of an innovative technology or high-tech device/process that doesn’t take into account the culture in which it operates. Click here for more.


mac smithViewpoint: Focus Your Resources

By Mac Smith, P.E.

The title of this column sounds like a no-brainer! What an idea: Put your employee talents and facilities to work on what a) is most important (critical), and b) has the potential for the largest ROI. But based on my many years in the technical engineering field of design, test, operations, maintenance and project management, it’s clear to me that there continues to be a steady deterioration in this simple premise. Why? Click here for more.