Letter from the WCMP Chair

The Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing & Productivity (WCMP) successfully completed its first year at the center of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) System in Wisconsin. The result is a new network that provides more business improvement opportunities than ever for Wisconsin small and medium-sized manufacturers.

The WCMP is composed of a partner network that at its core includes the UW-Stout Manufacturing Outreach Center (MOC) and the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership (WMEP); organizations that are dedicated to helping Wisconsin manufacturers grow and thrive. Together, this team stays at the forefront of new manufacturing ideas and technologies, while continuing to deliver a suite of support services. These services cover a broad spectrum ranging from food and beverage certifications to export strategies, to supply chains, and to the foundational elements of lean continuous improvement.

Wisconsin’s small to medium-sized manufacturers are fortunate to have ready, statewide access to MEP System resources through the WCMP, the WMEP and the MOC that improve manufacturer capabilities and business performance.

As demonstrated by the results in this Annual Report, many Wisconsin manufacturers experienced significant assistance, benefits and impact from engagements with the Wisconsin MEP System that directly grow bottom line performance.

The WCMP and its network are ready to serve as a trusted business partner in propelling the growth and long-term health of manufacturers in Wisconsin and I have been privileged to serve as chairman of the WCMP board of directors.

Tom Jacobson, Bruno Independent Living Aids, Inc.

Wisconsin MEP Passes $4 Billion in Impact

The WCMP delivered another strong year for Wisconsin manufacturing and its stakeholders. In 2016 we generated $212 million in economic impact and helped to preserve or create nearly 1,800 jobs.

These results, verified by independent survey, pushed our cumulative impact for Wisconsin manufacturers past $4 billion, and our new integrated MEP System positions the organization for even more success.

The combination of UW-Stout MOC and WMEP creates new capabilities for the entire state. The MOC specializes in bringing research out of the labs and into companies, while the WMEP creates new approaches for engaging people and harnessing technology. Coordinating these activities, the WCMP connects these capabilities to regional and national resources to leverage all our strengths.

With an ongoing 12:1 return on federal investment, the WCMP is a private-public partnership that works. We engage the Wisconsin manufacturing ecosystem to reap positive results throughout the state and our proven approaches have been strengthening manufacturers for more than two decades.

  • sales: $133 million

  • investments: $63 million

  • cost savings: $16 million

  • jobs: 1,787

Industry 4.0 Presents New Challenges for Wisconsin Manufacturers

Industry 4.0 promises to transform manufacturing with new technologies and tremendous opportunities for forward-looking manufacturers.

Connected devices enable immediate communication and analysis, while modern equipment and processes open new possibilities in design and delivery. Automation and advances in robotics free employees from tedious tasks, allowing them to engage in making their organizations more successful and responsive.

Are you ready to position your manufacturing operation for the future? Key MEP offerings make it possible:

  • Profitable Sustainable Initiative shows manufacturers how to improve their bottom line while reducing their carbon footprint.
  • ExporTech™ enables companies to become effective exporters in 90 days through an immersive strategic experience.
  • NIST Cybersecurity Framework provides the guidance necessary for companies to feel confident about their electronic assets.
  • Supply Chain Advantage aligns suppliers around key performance elements to deliver tremendous value for their customers.

Two Decades of Connecting Manufacturers with the Best Resources

The demands of modern manufacturing create new complications and challenges. Accelerating change and emerging technologies create possibilities not even imagined just a few years ago. It can be difficult for individual manufacturers to make sense of all of these changes.

Even so, it’s imperative that manufacturers act decisively in order to stay relevant. The WCMP clarifies the picture for manufacturers and connects them with the best resources to help at every stage of their development.

Our close connections with local, regional, and national resources enable manufacturers to find sound guidance and assistance with a wide range of issues, whether it’s leading edge research or practical approaches to everyday problems.

Staying connected. It’s one way the WCMP demonstrates our steadfast commitment to helping Wisconsin manufacturers thrive.

WCMP Board of Directors:

David Brukardt – Associate Vice President, Office of Economic Development, University of Wisconsin System

Jason Culotta – Senior Director of Government Relations, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce

John Didion – Chief Executive Officer, Didion Milling, Inc.

Morna Foy – President, Wisconsin Technical College System

Erica Grant – Vice President, Research & Development, Badger Mining Corporation

Greg Gomez – Vice President, Flow Instrumentation, Badger Meter, Inc.

Mark Hogan – Chief Executive Officer, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation

Tom Jacobson (Board Chair) – Vice President, Operations, Bruno Independent Living Aids, Inc.

Sheku Kamara – Dean of Applied Research, Milwaukee School of Engineering

Bob Meyer – Chancellor, University of Wisconsin-Stout

Ed Paradowski – President, Apache Stainless Equipment Corporation

Brad Taylor (Board Vice-Chair) – Vice President and General Manager, Sentry Equipment Corporation

Paul Timmons – Director of Manufacturing Operations, Larson-Juhl, Inc.

Ross Winklbauer – Sub-district Director, United Steelworkers


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