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Smart Manufacturing Blog

Welcome to the official Smart Manufacturing Blog. Gain access to the experiences of smart manufacturers that make the world's most awesome products, and insights into cloud-based MES, ERP, Supply Chain Management, Industrial IoT (IIoT), and Analytics solutions.


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Quality Management

Plex Manufacturing Blog

3 Reasons Why Traceability is Key to Reducing Errors on Your Plant Floor

Plex Team September 15, 2020

High profile recalls have increased in recent years and manufacturers have paid steeply not just in money but also the impact on their reputation. Paper based records are prone to errors, difficult to manage, and may be impossible to find which means days of delays in responding to a recall. A clear way to reduce errors on your plant floor and to avoid a recall, is implementing a system that…

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Quality 4.0 and the Industrial IoT

Stu Johnson September 5, 2019

Quality is one of the top concerns of most manufacturers. End customers demand quality products so OEMs demand quality performance all the way down their supply chains. There’s no tolerance for delivering anything but a quality product....

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Hausbeck Pickles Leverages Data-Driven Quality Management

Lori Zoellner August 6, 2019

Hausbeck Pickle Co. produces an average 400,000 pounds of pickles or peppers a day for some of the world’s largest fast food restaurants including Subway, Burger King, Domino’s Pizza, Taco Bell, and KFC. The nearly 100-year-old company headquartered in Michigan also manages 900 50,000-pound tanks for brining pickles. For every 33,000 lbs....

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A and K Finishing Moves from Manual, Paper-based Quality and Inventory Processes to up Its Game

Kaitlin Rebella November 13, 2018

For every large manufacturing company that is in the midst of a digital transformation, there are hundreds of small to mid-sized manufacturers still relying on manual, paper-based processes—and it’s taking a toll on their ability to manage quality and inventory....

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How to Become a Preferred Manufacturing Supplier

Stu Johnson April 10, 2018

Becoming a preferred supplier is a status most manufacturers want to attain and keep. To achieve this, you need to keep a close eye on quality performance while managing all the work involved with proving compliance. After all, your customers use compliance as a way to weed out lower performing suppliers so the two go hand in hand—even though compliance presents a whole set of headaches for you…

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Digitize, Connect, and Comply: Manufacturers Need a Risk-Based Approach

Stu Johnson February 12, 2018

Manufacturing industry standards have undergone significant changes in recent years in an attempt to respond to quality issues in products that resulted in personal injury, and deaths. You have likely seen the rise of the trend toward risk-based quality compliance that focuses on mitigating quality risks through prevention versus the more traditional approach of detection, or catching quality…

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Manufacturing Chaos to Calm: Operationalize Quality

Stu Johnson November 8, 2017

When it comes to quality management, our friends at the fictitious Edge Manufacturing are grappling with lack of visibility and control. Edge manages quality control on paper. So, it’s hard to verify whether quality procedures have taken place in a timely manner or whether operators just check boxes to move materials onto the next step to avoid production halts. ...

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Mistake Proofing in Manufacturing by Eliminating Manual Processes

Stu Johnson September 11, 2017

If you are still relying on manual, paper-based processes, quality is difficult to sustain and It’s likely you don’t even know exactly how much it’s costing you. The fact is, you rely on your quality control managers to ensure that operators are performing checks when and how they’re supposed to at appropriate intervals. ...

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Does Your EDI Reduce Errors or Increase Complexity?

Stu Johnson September 6, 2017

If you’re a supplier in the automotive supply chain, you know Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) guidelines well. You know it’s required by OEMs and Tier One suppliers and that failure to comply means getting locked out of the competitive landscape....

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Taking the Risk Out of Automotive Supplier Compliance

Stu Johnson August 9, 2017

Keeping up with industry requirements and regulations is critical if you’re an automotive supplier/manufacturer. If you don’t, you won’t be competitive for automotive business where compliance to ISO, and soon International Automotive Task Force (IATF), is a requirement not an option....

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