The Value Stream

An Oregon Manufacturers' Resource

Top Employment Law Updates for Manufacturers

The end of 2017 brought ups and downs with respect to employment law changes for Oregon manufacturers.  On the federal side, the change in administrations brought modifications to federal agencies, such as the National Labor Relations Board, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Department of Labor that have resulted…

Measuring KPIs with Visual Aids

We as managers often believe that our teams understand our company values, strategic direction, and key measurement of those initiatives merely through association. We may even tell our employees about our strategic direction and goals during our onboarding process, and assume that the message got through. Although we’d like to…

Oregon Applied Sustainability Experience Host Companies

The Oregon Applied Sustainability Experience (OASE) wants you to host a 10-week, free intern to conduct Pollution Prevention research at your business Your business may be able to address waste reduction and energy efficiency projects sooner and faster with the help of an OASE intern. An intern can make suggestions…

4 Sales / Marketing Myths that Trap Manufacturing Companies

Sales and marketing are two of the most important functions in any manufacturing business. Whether you have 4 employees or 400, having a good system in place to let new customers find your product, and an intelligent sales mechanism to help those customers make the best purchase of your product,…

5 Key Advantages of Modular Manufacturing

As part of my process intensification work for Manufacturing USA’s RAPID Institute, I came across “Small Modular Infrastructure” by Dahlgren et al. (The Engineering Economist) that highlights the shift in project analysis that makes small modular manufacturing the heir apparent for chemical manufacturing. This post summarizes the 5 key…

What FSMA Means for Food Processing Companies

This is a guest blog post by Teri and Alicia of Northwest Food Solutions What is FSMA? The Biggest Food Legislation Change In Decades Many of our clients and colleagues are talking about FSMA these days. The new Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) is the largest piece of legislation we’ve…

Manufacturers Wanted: New Market Opportunity

RAPID is seeking manufacturers capable of creating stacked and bonded Inconel 625 plates that are .25mm thick with .006mm tolerance. The RAPID Institute’s (1 of 14 federally funded Manufacturing USA Institutes) goal is to enable chemical module manufacturing and process intensification. Key in this endeavor is developing precision components…

Leasing Can Preserve Working Capital, Create Growth Opportunities

As the year comes to a close, many companies are evaluating their 2017 performance and looking ahead toward 2018. A goal for many businesses is to maintain a healthy balance sheet while still making growth-oriented investments, and one increasingly popular option is through leasing. Leasing allows companies to preserve working…

Robots, Cobots and Human labor

Robots have long been romanticized in art and popular culture. From HALL 9000 and the Terminator series where they are seen as a menace to humanity, through to Star Wars or WALL-E where they are benevolent and even heroic, robots can be portrayed both positively and negatively. Today, however, robots…

Three Manufacturers Share Tips for Hiring and Retaining Employees

Having difficulty finding and retaining staff? You’re not alone. Manufacturing companies increasingly cite talent acquisition and retention as top concerns. While many of them pay higher-than-average wages ($20 to $23 an hour in some cases), the low level of unemployment and lack of qualified applicants expressing interest in these types…