Monday, December 2, 2013

Broome Community College Quality Assurance Interns Available

Broome Community College announced that student interns will be available to local companies during the Spring semester of Feb-May, 2014.

These BCC students are high school graduates between the ages of 18 and 25 who have acquired proficiencies in Quality Control, English, leadership, and public speaking.

They are from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds and most are from rural areas of the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua and Mexico. They are chosen after a rigorous screening process which considers academic ability, leadership qualities, and desire to serve others.

They design improvement projects and upon return to their home communities put them into action.

The student interns should be given work responsibilities in a technical area since the program is more geared to the technical side of quality. However, some work experience in the management/human side of quality is also acceptable.

Employers are required to provide the college with a job profile for each internship. These job descriptions are needed by February 14, 2014 at the latest.  To receive full credit for the internship, students must complete a minimum of 120 hours of work. Time cards will be provided to the employers and returned to the college every week. At the end of the internship, the college needs a written appraisal of the student’s performance from their immediate supervisor. Included in the appraisal should be a letter grade for the intern.

Interns are not allowed to receive any monetary compensation. However, there is no problem with an employer showing their appreciation by providing the student with a gift or making a donation to the BCC Foundation. Contributions to the Foundation should be targeted to the Arthur E. Jamison Quality Assurance Scholarship. This scholarship is sponsored by the Binghamton Section of the American Society for Quality and is given to a local student enrolled in the Quality Assurance Program at BCC.

None of the interns are U.S. citizens. Since the students rely on public transportation, the sponsoring companies may have to be a little flexible in their scheduling.

The students are required to meet periodically during the internship, and they are required to provide weekly reports detailing their work activities.

For additional information please contact Claudia Sofia Beebe at 607-778-5260 or

See this and other newsletter articles at

Visit our website at

NYSDOL Safety & Health Training Grants Available

The Hazard Abatement Board (HAB) recently announced the availability of funds for the development and implementation of programs promoting occupational safety and health in the workplace through training, education, and other proven preventative programs for the 2014-15 grant year. Total available funds anticipated for programs under Article 29 of the NYS Labor Law will be approximately $6.5 million. Applicants may apply for any portion thereof. Grants awarded will be based on the number of quality programs approved and the availability of funds. Request for Proposals were available as of November 25 2013. Request for Proposals (RFPs) may be obtained at the website below.

Eligible applicants include public and private employers, labor organizations or their federations, trade associations, non-profit organizations, and educational institutions. Employers must employ one or more persons (beyond self-employment). Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises goals shall be 20% for MWBEs; Minority business subcontracting goal: 11%; Women-owned business subcontracting goal: 9%.

Responses to the 2014 RFP must be received by the HAB staff no later than 5:00 PM, Eastern Daylight Time on January 31, 2014 or be postmarked by such date in accordance with the proposal submittal instructions set forth in the RFP. No consideration will be given to grant applications that fail to meet this submittal deadline.

Special note to all current HAB Contractors: We have been informed by the Division of Budget that all current Hazard Abatement Board contractors ( i.e. those entities which have contracts for the 2013-14 Grant Year) must register with the New York State Grants Gateway by April 1, 2014. Failure to do so may result in the contractor’s inability to request reimbursement.

If you have not already done so, please visit the Grants Gateway
website at and
click the “Request Access Now” link under Registration.

For questions about this grant, contact:
Jim Cunningham at 607-725-1225 or

See this and other newsletter articles at

Visit our website at

Governor Cuomo Announces Fuzehub Initiative to Help Manufacturing Companies Grow Their Business

Governor Cuomo has announced the launch of FuzeHub, a new collaborative resource platform developed to spur the growth of New York State manufacturers. FuzeHub aims to better connect small and medium sized manufacturing companies to a wealth of State technology resources, including the New York Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program, universities, economic development organizations, and other state programs to help these businesses overcome challenges, encouraging innovation and driving economic growth and job creation.

"The FuzeHub initiative builds on the State’s work to create a business environment that allows manufacturers to thrive in New York,” Governor Cuomo said. “FuzeHub brings together all of our leading technology resources under one umbrella allowing companies to quickly and easily access critical expertise and resources. Manufacturers are the economic backbone of many communities in New York, and when they do well, all New Yorkers reap the benefits. This initiative will stimulate innovation, spur job creation and grow companies across the state."

FuzeHub provides a new way for companies to connect directly to the expertise they need on a 24/7 basis by submitting their requests online at A core team of technical and manufacturing professionals will respond within 48 hours and work with the companies through live, one-on-one discussions to identify business challenges and provide targeted connections to the specific set of experts and resources needed.

AM&T, one of the 10 MEP Centers in NY is part of the collaboration team.

See this and other newsletter articles at

Visit our website at

8-Step Method Drives To Zero Defects At Raymond Corp.

In partnership with AM&T, the Association for Manufacturing Excellence conducted a one-day event at The Raymond Corporation that focused on how to reduce quality defects using its 8-step method.

Scott Campbell, the TPS Manger at Raymond, shared how the company has significantly reduced internal defects and warranty costs, with improved customer satisfaction and employee morale using these methodologies.

Campbell and his team provided a tour of Raymond’s manufacturing operations, highlighting how the Toyota Production System (TPS) Principles and Tools have been applied.

In the afternoon, Campbell reviewed the 8-step method for reducing quality defects, including how each step is performed and its key points. A critical part of this method is Raymond’s daily morning market or Asaichi meeting, which was also highlighted during the workshop.

Participants of the event commented that it was the best session that they had ever attended, and expressed appreciation to Campbell and The Raymond Corporation for such a valuable session.

The Raymond Corporation, a Toyota Industries (TICO) member company, is a global provider of materials handling equipment, technology, expertise, and support. Raymond manufactures electric lift truck products for the narrow aisle and very narrow aisle market segments in Class I, II, and III.

The company was founded in 1922 and is based in Greene. It has manufacturing sites in Greene, NY and Muscatine, IA, and a parts distribution facility in Syracuse, NY.

See this and other newsletter articles at

Visit our website at

Lean Misconceptions

By: Jim Womack

The Association for Manufacturing Excellence (AME) brought the heavy hitters of competitiveness to Toronto for its annual conference. With North American manufacturers hoping for a rebound as Asian producers struggle with rising costs, AME and its associated organizations (Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, and the Toronto chapter of SME, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers) are promoting renewed focus on productivity and effectiveness as a way to survive and — dare we say it? — thrive in the coming new era.

At an introductory reception hosted by the Ontario government, the keynote presenter was Massachusetts-based Jim Womack, the former MIT researcher now known as the founder of the Lean movement. An operating philosophy that stresses listening to the customer, tight collaboration between management and production staff, eliminating waste and boosting production flow, Lean is often heralded as manufacturers’ best hope for cutting costs and regaining their innovative edge.

CME president Jayson Meyers introduced Womack as “someone who has changed the world” by launching the Lean revolution. Womack, who developed his understanding of Lean from production methods at Toyota automotive plants, modestly deflected such accolades: “All I have done is repackage stolen goods,” he said. “I just tell stories.” (His books include The Machine that Changed the World: The Story of Lean Production, Lean Thinking, Lean Solutions, and most recently, Gemba Walks.)

Womack noted that this fall marks the 25th anniversary of the movement, which he says is still gaining ground (in fact, many Asian producers are now embracing Lean production methods in an attempt to get their costs under control).

But Lean has proven a difficult process to master — not a quick fix, but a long, complex business-culture-changing journey. The Lean movement has also suffered from a number of “misconceptions,” Womack said. “I’m surprised we’ve made as much progress as we have, with so much misunderstanding of what we [the leading Lean gurus] have been saying.”

Misconception No. 1: “People heard that Lean is a cost-cutting exercise,” Womack said. In reality, the production methods Womack’s MIT team studied were geared to producing more output, with less waste — a key Lean concept that includes unnecessary time, space, operating costs, capital expenditures, and worker injuries. “People think it’s a headcount reduction system,” he complained. “People heard the less, but they didn’t hear the more.”

Misconception No. 2: When Womack and two co-authors produced The Machine that Changed the World, about the Toyota Production System, ”People thought it was a book about factories,” he said. In fact, he noted, the groundbreaking 1990 book included prominent chapters on managing customers, how to listen to your market, and running your entire enterprise on Lean principles. To understand that Lean is not just about production, he said, “You have to read the other four-fifths of the book.”

Misconception 3: “Most people think Lean is a within-the-walls activity to fix your company,” Womack said. But Lean works best when supply-chain partners team up to squeeze out inefficiencies and maximize flow. “It is impossible for you to get very far when the people in your value stream don’t get any better,” he said.

Misconception 4: “Lean is an improvement process production people can do — management doesn’t have to do anything. Management can ‘check the box’ and move on.” Womack said Lean requires continual co-operation at all levels, with upper management building two-way communications and trust with staff, restructuring to support decision-making at lower levels, shepherding investment in Lean projects, and generally championing Lean initiatives. Most Lean commentators have noted that management loses interest in these projects well before the rest of the staff.

In the long term, Lean will continue to thrive, he said. He noted it is spreading into health care and government, two institutions that desperately need to tighten their efforts and control costs, and he said Lean will always be needed in business.

“I am a modest optimist. I think people and societies learn more slowly than they should,” he said. In the long-run battle for competitiveness, he said, the winners will be those organizations that “get better faster than everyone else.”

See this and other newsletter articles at

Visit our website at

Associates’ Corner - Buckingham Manufacturing Co., Inc.

The Buckingham name is well known to linemen and arborists throughout North America and internationally as a company they rely on to do their jobs efficiently and safely.

Buckingham’s roots were established in 1896 when Wilmont Stephens, owner of a Binghamton blacksmith shop, began producing pole climbers. In 1913, W. H. Buckingham purchased the firm and changed the name from the Stephens Company to what is now known as Buckingham Manufacturing Co., Inc.

H. Andrew Batty Jr. and a new management team took ownership in 1984. Today he and James Pennefeather continue to guide the company as they expand and improve the original product line; introduce new product lines; expand their sales and distribution system domestically and internationally; and introduce new manufacturing technology and reorganized production.

Buckingham is a medium-sized company with the expertise and agility to develop and deliver quality products based on customer requirements, lead times, engineering changes and schedule changes. Their diverse work force contributes to the breadth and depth of their knowledge and experience and senior management continues its commitment to quality improvements.

Today, Buckingham is ISO 9001:2008 certified and is primarily responsible for the design and manufacture of climbing and work positioning equipment, fall protection gear, and accessories specifically designed for the electric, telecommunications, cable and professional arborist markets. The company follows all applicable standards including OSHA, ANSI, ASTM, CSA and CE requirements pertaining to their product line.

Batty explained that Buckingham’s on-going success is dependent on its loyal customer base and the continued addition of new and satisfied customers. “Outstanding customer service is the backbone of a successful company and our customers appreciate the knowledge, experience and flexibility of our staff.” In sharp contrast to the national norm, Buckingham’s customer service staff has long tenure at Buckingham. “Our service representatives know the products, interface with our shop managers and frequently work directly with manufacturing to satisfy customer requirements.”

For more info, contact: Jim Nichols at 607-773-2400 or

See this and other newsletter articles at

Visit our website at

Associates’ Corner - Applied Pulsed Power, Inc.

Applied Pulsed Power, Inc. (APP) is a company located near Ithaca, NY that designs and builds pulsed power components and systems for a wide variety of industries. As the name implies, pulsed power involves the accumulation of energy over a relatively long period of time and releasing it very quickly, thus providing very high peak power.
APP’s ongoing focus has been the development of high speed, high voltage, high current, solid state switches and systems. These compact switches can be used to replace spark gap and thyratron vacuum tube switches in existing and new applications.
The company was founded in 1990. In 2005, APP moved into an 8,500 sq. ft. facility in Tompkins County and has further expanded with a 1,700 sq. ft. location in Illinois that is dedicated to sales and R&D in assembly and packaging techniques.
One of APP’s founders is Steve Glidden who today is the company’s president and chief technology officer. Other key personnel include Craig Dunham, who joined APP as CEO during June 2011 to help lead the company’s growth, and Howard D. Sanders, manager of the company’s Solid State Switch Division.
Dunham said that many existing pulsed power applications use technology that is based on vacuum tubes and other designs that are outmoded by today’s standards. He explained that, “Replacing old switching technology in existing applications plus the many potential new applications that are made practical by APP’s products create the potential for a significant industry transformation and clear growth opportunities for our company.”
In addition to manufacturing the switches at the Freeville, NY location, the company’s 11 employees also develop pulsed power driver and modulator systems that utilize APP’s solid state switches, optimizing them for customer-specific applications. Examples of APP product installations include National Lab particle accelerators, medical devices that break up kidney stones, and water treatment equipment.
Primary customers for APP products include government laboratories as well as commercial clients. Much of the company’s R&D has occurred through collaboration with these customers as well as with universities.
For more info visit:
See this and other newsletter articles at
Visit our website at