My October article in Circuits Assembly magazine looks at nearshoring in Southeast Asia. I made another trip to Singapore in August and continue to notice parallels in the way Singapore’s supply base leverages adjacent low cost labor markets with what I see here on the U.S./Mexico border. It is definitely an option worth exploring for supplying end markets within Asia and Europe.
Also, don’t forget the EMS-related session Mike Buetow and I have scheduled for SMTAI next week.
Seamless Sourcing Teams: Best Practices in Information Exchange
Chair: Susan Mucha, Powell-Mucha Consulting, Inc.
Co-Chair: Mike Buetow, UP Media Group
Place: SMTA International in Ft. Worth, TX
Date: Tuesday, October 15, 2013, 10:30 am – 1 pm, Room 203C
Synopsis: The quality of IT solutions and internal processes for optimizing production efficiency continue to grow in importance in the outsourcing equation. This session looks at trends and best practices in managing design reviews, production documentation, and material and production status. The session includes a range of perspectives reflecting both supplier solutions and iNEMI’s 2013 Information Management Systems Roadmap.
- Best Practices for Improving the PCB Supply Chain, Cheryl Tulkoff and Craig Hillman, Ph.D., DfR Soultions
- Accountability Structure in a Contract Manufacturing Engineering Department, Mike Gerner, Plexus Corp.
- Developing a Knowledge Based Risk Identification System for Sophisticated SMT Assembly Design and Development, Jingsong Xie, Ph.D., RelEng Technologies, Inc.
- Managing Information Across the Supply Chain: Highlights from the iNEMI Roadmap, Barbara Goldstein, National Institute of Standards and Technology
To register visit: http://smta.org/smtai/register.cfm.
While I believe some of the talk of skills shortages is political hype from some employers not wanting to pay market competitive salaries, there is no question that many kids today don’t see a career in manufacturing as an exciting option. My column in Circuits Assembly this month discusses this issue and ways to help grow the available workforce and infrastructure necessary to support returned growth in the manufacturing sector.
In talking with OEMs and electronics manufacturing services companies over the past year, I’ve come to the conclusion that while nearshoring is happening, the bigger trend is a more calculated rationalization of the supply chain with a greater focus on total cost. This is good, because for years many companies were fixated on moving projects to the lowest cost labor market, whether it made sense or not. In my April Circuits Assembly column, I visit some of the softer issues that make or break an outsourcing relationship.
Last week I had the pleasure of moderating a panel on Nearshoring: Addressing the Sourcing Equation as part of the Real Time at IPC APEX video series. I also did several other interviews, which I’ll link in other columns.
Gary Burnett, President and CEO of Burton Industries; Curtis Campbell, VP Sales West Coast Operations, SigmaTron International; and Mike Baldwin, VP, Spectrum Assembly, Inc. share their views on Nearshoring both domestically and in other parts of the world in this video clip.
Nearshoring: Addressing the Sourcing Equation
My December column in Circuits Assembly looked at SMTAI, some of the activities that took place and the news that IPC and SMTA would be combining forces once again. I think combined IPC/SMTA programming is a great idea and will create a very strong show.
IPC’s APEX show is just around the corner and I’ll be there as well. As with SMTAI, I’ll be doing a few video interviews as part of iConnect007’s Live programming. I’ll be chairing a panel on Nearshoring, which I’ll discuss in more detail once everything is firmed up a little more. The Nearshoring panel will be videotaped and I’ll post a link.
Finally, I’ll also be teaching a session IPC EMS Program Management Certification program. I worked with IPC last year to revamp my session as part of an effort to compress the first two sections of the course into a 3-day program. It seems to be working well. We’ve already got another class scheduled for March in Atlanta.