Manufacturers Say The President is Getting it Right on Regulations

By | General, Shopfloor Main | No Comments

President Trump and Congress are tackling regulations like we haven’t seen in generations, bringing expansion, hiring and more investment opportunities for Manufacturers.

According to the NAM Manufacturers’ Outlook survey, 80 percent of manufacturers say the president’s actions on regulations are headed in the right direction, with more than half of respondents saying those actions will allow them to expand operations, increase investment and add more workers.

Manufacturers’ record-high optimism reported in the first quarter has carried into the second quarter of this year, marking the highest two-quarter average (91.4 percent) for manufacturing optimism in the survey’s 20-year history. In addition, 89.5 percent of respondents report a positive outlook for their company.

Read the Full Report Here

Timmons: Scott Garrett at the Ex-Im Bank is a Bad Deal for America’s Manufacturers

By | General, Shopfloor Main, Trade | No Comments

The U.S. Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank has operated for decades with a mission to support U.S. jobs through exports. Back in April, President Donald Trump confirmed his support for the export credit agency. In 2015, a bipartisan supermajority in Congress voted to reauthorize the agency through 2019. Who would want to stand in opposition to this small federal agency with an outsized, tangible benefit for the U.S. economy? Unfortunately, the former Congressman who has been nominated to lead the agency is just that person. Former New Jersey Rep. Scott Garrett, the nominee to lead the Ex-Im Bank, has been a vocal and dogged opponent of the Ex-Im Bank.

NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons, in an Op-Ed published today in the Wall Street Journal, outlined the negative impact for manufacturers if the Senate moves to confirm Mr. Garrett as the leader of the Ex-Im Bank.

As a Congressman, Mr. Garrett built a record of votes and statements that sought to dismantle the Ex-Im Bank. Mr. Garrett voted to close the agency at every opportunity. He voted against a reauthorization bill in October 2015 that passed the House with overwhelming bipartisan support. Before the vote, he took to the House floor to mischaracterize the agency as a “fund for corporate welfare” and urge his colleagues to “keep the Export-Import Bank out of business.”

When he voted against the agency’s reauthorization again later in 2015, he issued a statement explaining that he opposed the bill because it would “resurrect the most shameless example of crony capitalism Washington has ever concocted—the Export-Import Bank.” Prior to the 2015 reauthorization, Mr. Garrett voted against the Ex-Im Bank reauthorization in 2012 that was strongly approved by both the House and Senate. Mr. Garrett’s opposition to the Ex-Im Bank has been consistent, vocal and aimed at undermining the agency’s credibility.

Ex-Im Bank Benefits U.S. Manufacturers, Workers and Taxpayers

  • American Workers and Their Families Benefit from Ex-Im: U.S. export sales supported by the Ex-Im Bank have directly supported 1.4 million jobs over the past seven years.
  • Small Businesses: In FY2016, about 90 percent of Ex-Im’s transactions – more than 2,600 deals – directly supported small businesses. Tens of thousands of small business suppliers benefit from partnerships with large exporters that also utilize Ex-Im Bank.
  • Taxpayers: Ex-Im has generated $7 billion for taxpayers in the past 20 years, mostly through fees collected from foreign customers. The agency is self-sustaining and covers its own operating costs. Eliminating Ex-Im would actually increase the U.S. deficit. The agency transferred $284 million in deficit-reducing receipts to the U.S. Treasury for FY 2016.

Mr. Garrett’s past statements are evidence of a fundamental misunderstanding of the Ex-Im Bank’s ability to level the playing field globally. In a competitive global landscape, the Ex-Im Bank is a much-needed counterweight to substantial foreign export financing. The agency recently reported that China continues to be the world’s largest provider of official export credit, providing more trade-related investment support than the rest of the world combined. Together, the BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) provided a combined total of more than $51 billion in medium- and long-term export credit in 2016 —nearly half of the total official export credit provided worldwide. Last year, without a quorum for its Board of Directors, the Ex-Im Bank was able to authorize just $5 billion. While the agency’s Board of Directors has lacked the necessary quorum to approve certaom deals, an estimated 40 deals worth more than $30 billion are stuck in the pipeline.

The Ex-Im Bank plays a targeted and critical role in securing and creating more American jobs. That is why the agency needs at its helm a leader who will ensure the agency is able to function at its full potential and promote U.S. exports in the face of substantial competition from manufacturers overseas supported by very active export credit agencies. Manufacturers are losing out on opportunities every day that the vacancies on the Ex-Im Bank Board of Directors are left unfilled, but Mr. Garrett – who said “Congress should put the Export-Import Bank out of business” just two years ago – is simply not a credible leader for this agency.

Ecolab: A Business Model for Success

By | General | No Comments

If you want to hear how to run a company effectively, listen to Emilio Tenuta.

He is the vice president of corporate sustainability at Ecolab Inc., a St. Paul, Minnesota–based firm with 48,000 employees, $13 billion in annual sales and a record of being innovative and pro-environment—and long recognized as one of “the world’s most ethical companies.” Read More

Competing for Energy Efficiency in the Manufacturing Industry

By | Energy, General, Shopfloor Main | No Comments

The U.S. industrial sector has been a longtime heavy energy consumer, accounting for one-third of the energy usage in the country. What’s more, the U.S. industrial sector has an annual energy bill of about $200 billion. While both of these statistics may seem startling, at Saint-Gobain, one of the world’s largest building materials companies and manufacturer of innovative material solutions, we believe these numbers present the opportunity for businesses to step up to the challenge to improve the energy efficiency of their manufacturing plants and facilities.

Already, more than 200 industrial partners representing close to 2,600 facilities in all 50 states have committed to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Better Plants Program to improve energy savings by 20 percent or more over the next 10 years. Our new president and CEO, Tom Kinisky, recently signed Saint-Gobain’s renewed pledge, allowing our company to further its energy-savings goals, increase the sustainability of our operations and reduce the overall carbon footprint of our manufacturing facilities.

Image by Saint-Gobain

While these pledges are nice to have, what’s most important is to consider the on-the-ground initiatives companies need to implement to help these goals become a reality. At Saint-Gobain, we believe a sense of competition among manufacturing plants and colleagues truly helps to move these goals forward. In 2016, our company’s Environmental, Health and Safety Department established the company’s Water, Waste and Energy (WWE) Program, which was recently recognized with a U.S. Department of Energy Better Practice Award. This program encourages more than 130 Saint-Gobain manufacturing sites to compete against each other to see which facility can best reduce its environmental impact by highlighting practical and effective solutions for increasing the sustainability of sites. At the end of the program, five sites are recognized with 20-pound championship-style belts and given the titles of “Waste Champion,” “Water Champion,” “Energy Champion,” “CO2 Champion” and “Overall Champion” to recognize their commitment to on-the-ground, effective energy-reduction solutions.

Image by Saint-Gobain

Through this program and by competing against their peers, Saint-Gobain manufacturing facilities across the country have been able to achieve substantial energy consumption reduction results. The program’s 2017 Energy Champion, Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics in Bristol, Rhode Island, took a systems approach to energy management resulting in a 45 percent energy intensity reduction over the past two years. The 2016 and 2017 CO2 Champion, CertainTeed Roofing in Oxford, North Carolina, invigorated its commitment to reducing energy and carbon dioxide emissions by forming a special committee of 24 members focused on working directly to reduce the site’s emissions. Through the efforts to upgrade heating elements on three of its main production lines, the plant was able to achieve a substantial reduction in natural gas usage. In addition, this year’s Water Champion, Saint-Gobain Quartz in Riverport, Kentucky, implemented the use of a cooling tower to achieve water savings and sealed a well that had been in use for years. The well water withdrawal was reduced from 131 million gallons in 2012 to zero gallons in 2015 and 2016.

Based on these percentages and statistics, it is clear that a sense of competition helps to spur outside-the-box thinking and improvements that are able to result in an overall positive impact for the company and its facilities as well as the planet. Let’s use this learning to encourage our employees and colleagues to compete for the greater good of the planet.

Manufacturers Respond to U.S. Department of Justice Decision in Microsoft v. U.S.

By | General | No Comments

National Association of Manufacturers Senior Vice President and General Counsel Linda Kelly issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Department of Justice decision in Microsoft v. U.S.:

“We are disappointed that the U.S. Department of Justice has decided to appeal the 2nd Circuits decision in Microsoft v. U.S. We think the court correctly decided that U.S. law does not permit an extension of warrants outside the United States. Ultimately, Congress can and should act to modernize the governing statutes in this area, which are decades-old. Law enforcement should be able to access digital information in a timely manner and protect individual liberty at the same time. This is achievable through adopting a modern, 21st-century framework like the proposed bipartisan International Communications Privacy Act.


2017 Manufacturing Summit: Manufacturing’s Moment!

By | General, Shopfloor Main | No Comments

During the 2017 Manufacturing Summit, manufacturers of all sizes from across the country gathered in Washington, D.C., for a two-day event, to bring their shop floors to the nation’s capital and to meet with members of Congress and the administration to advance the policies critical to a robust manufacturing economy.

With hundreds of manufacturers in attendance and a leading lineup of speakers, National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) President and CEO Jay Timmons referred to the 2017 Manufacturing Summit as a Summit “like none other before itand characterized the moment as unique, calling it manufacturings moment!

Manufacturers heard from Vice President Mike Pence who kicked off the event and House Speaker Paul Ryan who delivered his first major speech on tax. The event closed out with remarks from Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta and House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, before manufacturers descended on Capitol Hill for their final day to highlight manufacturing’s top priorities.

Photos and a live stream of the events can be seen below.2017 Manufacturing Summit

ShopTalk Podcast: A Future for Veterans in Manufacturing

By | General, Shopfloor Policy | No Comments

Across the country, Americans are celebrating our veterans and the sacrifice of our military. Thousands of service men and women return home each month, looking to enter the workforce, and with manufacturers seeking to fill a large skills gap, there is a future in manufacturing for veterans.

In the latest ShopTalk podcast episode, NAM Senior Vice President of Communications Erin Streeter talks with retired Colonel John Buckley, military relations manager at Koch Industries, and Amy Thomas, senior director of programs and development at The Manufacturing Institute, about why veterans should consider a manufacturing career.

Top Three Ways to Inspire Female Students to Pursue a Career in Manufacturing

By | General, Shopfloor Main | No Comments

By Melsha Winchester, Marketing Director, Bishop-Wisecarver Group, 2017 STEP Ahead Honoree

“Women are underrepresented in all manufacturing sectors,” according to the Untapped Resource study conducted by The Manufacturing Institute, an affiliate of the National Association of Manufacturers. There are many organizations focused on introducing and encouraging female students to pursue manufacturing careers, such as Women in Manufacturing, Association of Women in the Metal Industries and Automotive Women’s Alliance Foundation just to name a few. It is apparent that one of the best way to attract female students is to have women already working in manufacturing careers share the career opportunities available in the manufacturing industry. “By reaching out to mentor a girl or young woman, you can change her life and put everyone’s future in good hands,said Tabby Biddle in her article Why Mentoring Young Women and Girls Is Important.

Bishop-Wisecarver, a California-based manufacturer, can be included in organizations focused on inspiring female students to pursue rewarding careers in manufacturing. I recognize that as a woman in the manufacturing industry and the marketing director at Bishop-Wisecarver, I have a great opportunity and responsibility to show young girls why a career in manufacturing is rewarding and fulfilling.

I wanted to share the top three ways manufacturers can get female students excited about pursuing a career in manufacturing that I have learned at Bishop-Wisecarver:

  1. Host a Manufacturing Day℠ or Private Plant TourEvery October, Bishop-Wisecarver hosts Manufacturing Day for local students and FIRST® teams. Manufacturing Day is a celebration of modern manufacturing meant to inspire the next generation of manufacturers by having students tour their plants, ask questions and participate in hands-on activities. Our program at Bishop-Wisecarver also includes a career panel, where staff members talk about their careers in engineering, technology, sales, marketing and operations. Make sure that you include female staff members because young ladies will relate to women who are in roles thought mainly as “male roles.”
  2. Sponsor a Local FIRST TeamBishop-Wisecarver is proud to support two all-girls FIRST® teams for the 20162017 season. Our contribution helps students build skills in STEM to design extraordinary robots that compete in rigorous matches. STEM programs will help prepare students for careers in manufacturing.
  3. Support STEM-Based ProgramsDuring the year, Bishop-Wisecarver actively participates in local science fairs, engineering camps and summits. Our president, Pamela Kan, served as a mentor and panelist for female high school students in last year’s STEAM Summit organized by ASTRA. The support of these activities helps create opportunities for mentorship where female students can have a place to go when they have questions or need support.

As a recent recipient of the 2017 STEP Ahead Award, I had the opportunity to meet many women with rewarding careers in manufacturing. The discussions were riveting, and now I’m inspired to do more to reach young women to tell them why working for a manufacturing company is a great career choice. Learn more about the Institute’s STEP Ahead program here.

Infrastructure Week, Tax Reform Top the NAM Agenda This Week

By | General | No Comments

The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and its members were all-in during Infrastructure Week this week in Washington, D.C. NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons kicked off the week by underscoring the ways in which infrastructure investment can be an engine for U.S. growth and doubled down on investment.

Jay Timmons at an Infrastructure Week Kickoff Event

Infrastructure Week Kickoff Event Panel Session

Manitowoc Company President and CEO Barry Pennypacker participated in a roundtable discussion with members of Congress and the executive branch on highways and bridges. Pennypacker reinforced the importance of infrastructure spending during a ShopTalk with NAM Senior Vice President of Communications Erin Streeter as well as a ShopFloor blog.

Ingersoll-Rand Chairman and CEO Michael Lamach took to the airwaves on CNBC for an interview on “Power Lunch” to say America is in an infrastructure crisis, and Marlin Steel Wire Products President and Owner and NAM Small and Medium Manufacturers Group Chair Drew Greenblatt told Fox Business’ Varney & Co. that American manufacturing needs to lead the way for infrastructure.

NAM staff were touting the importance of infrastructure investment from all over the United States. NAM Vice President of Infrastructure, Innovation and Human Resources Policy Robyn Boerstling spoke at an event in Indiana about updating the nation’s ports, and NAM Vice President of Energy and Resources Policy Ross Eisenberg reminded us not to overlook the need for investment in energy infrastructure in a ShopFloor blog.

Fluor Corporation Chairman and CEO and NAM Board Vice Chair David Seaton rounded out Investment Week activities with a ShopFloor blog on utilizing publicprivate partnerships to finance infrastructure projects.

Infrastructure Week Congressional/Executive Roundtable Discussion

Over on Capitol Hill, Emerson Chairman and CEO and NAM Boar Chair David Farr kicked off the year’s first hearing on tax reform. He testified on behalf of the NAM and told the House Ways and Means Committee that changes to the tax code must be permanent.

Farr testifies during the House Ways and Means Committee hearing on how tax reform will grow our economy and create jobs.

Farr meets with policymakers at the hearing.

And Snap-on Incorporated Chairman and CEO Nick Pinchuk was on Fox Business with Charles Payne to talk about the skills gap facing the manufacturing industry. Snap-on was one of the first companies President Donald Trump visited after Inauguration Day to talk jobs and manufacturing.

Good News: Bipartisan Regulatory Reform Introduced in Senate

By | General, Shopfloor Main, Shopfloor Policy | No Comments

In the first 100 days of the Trump administration, manufacturers have seen many actions from President Trump to provide regulatory relief. Now, there’s good news coming from the Senate as well. Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) have released the Regulatory Accountability Act, which, in their words is “designed to make federal regulations smarter and more effective so they better support businesses, families, and jobs by modernizing the federal regulatory process that hasn’t been significantly reformed in 70 years.”  Read More