Wednesday, 18 May 2016 12:35

Ringer Radio Episode 7

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Monika
Good afternoon, Atlanta. This is Gabe and Monika Meacham with Ringer Radio.

Gabe
Hello everybody.

Monika
Good to have everyone with us today. We’ve got a special topic for you today. We tried to come up with a joke around it…it’s a little difficult, but we have a special guest with us…Jason Moss from the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance…he is here with us today. Welcome Jason.

Jason
Glad to be here.

Monika
So yeah we thought it would be interesting…Gabe and I have a huge passion for manufacturing and the production of something, because in our line of business, while we may produce something, we don’t produce something, so it's that weird…

Gabe
The best we feel like we can do is like champion on the guys that actually make something and be like “at least we can make it look good to the web”. I've always gone after the manufacturing market pretty heavy just because I love standing in the middle of a production floor and watching people busily buzzing around and stuff like that. Then walking all the way from ‘here's our supply, here's where it actually gets produced, this is where we’re shipping all over the world’…It's one of those little boxes of magic because from the outside of the building, most of the time, you would never know so much is going on and then once you get into the inside of the building, it’s a little bit magical there. That and…I'll call myself from North Georgia…and that was the biggest thing running up there, you know. I was friends with a lot of people that had manufacturing facilities and worked manufacturing facilities and it's one of the few places you can go in the workforce where you're likely to have people there for 15, 20, 25 years, whereas in most other sectors it's just non-existent. So you have that long-term pride.

Monika
There’s an operation aspect to it and there's the people aspects to it. There’s more of a family atmosphere…at least the ones I've been to and the ones that I have seen…there's much more of a family atmosphere in a manufacturing facility, especially small to mid-sized, compared to a lot of other businesses. They definitely care about their folks and it resonates through.

Gabe
The good ones. There’s all kinds of bad players, I'm sure.

Monika
Of course. So Jason, welcome. Tell us a little about yourself. Tell us about Georgia Manufacturing Alliance, what that does, what it represents.

Jason
Sure. To give you a little bit of history on the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance…I'm a Georgia boy. I was born in Griffin and this has always been kind of home base for me. I live up in Lawrenceville, married with an 18 year old son. We only have 1 but he is very active so he counts for about 3. Got a lot going you know, that graduation thing going on, picking colleges.

Monika
Wow it’s the graduation time...

Jason
Yeah, exciting, and he's had a unique vantage point to see manufacturing from my perspective, so the manufacturing world is what we do. We are kind of like you…we're still sort of in the service side. We don’t actually have a backdoor and load stuff out the door, but what we’re here to do is we're to help support the manufacturing community. I started this organization back in 2008, I had been previously in software sales in ‘99 and 2000 and sold engineering software to manufacturing companies. Then I took about a 7-year break from that space and got into multi-level marketing, network marketing kind of thing and helped people start home-based businesses and was relatively successful. I built an organization of about 4,500 people nationwide.

Monika
Nice

Jason
I learned a lot of stuff, so I been there, got my T-shirt, learned a lot, thankful for the lessons…probably not going to go back there but, I learned how to build organizations and build teams. I learned a lot about training and putting events together and that sort of thing. I also learned a lot about business to business networking. B2B networking is a lot more fun than cold calls. I like hanging it out with folks and drinking coffee. That makes it fun. So my company went away, which those companies…companies just do. I was looking to get back into something that I knew how to do, so I hopped back into software sales and I was looking for a networking group that serviced manufacturing. I fell in love with a power cord, BNI, the Chamber of Commerce network thing…it was a lot more fun, like I said, building in a warm market and referred market, than it was doing cold, so I'm trying to find that networking group for manufacturing companies in ‘08 and they just really didn’t exist. There were a couple of professional organizations like the Society of Manufacturing Engineers and Apex and Institute of Packaging Professionals, but those were really Silod and they were industry-specific.

Gabe
They’re not really passing business leads as much as just passing information one to the other right?

Jason
Correct, and it was really educational in nature. Most of those organizations were certification based and in continuing education and that kind of thing. So I was looking for a place to get together and really network and pass business. So I hopped in and created, kind of on a whim, the organization, February 2008…two weeks notice and I was like “let’s just see what we can do”. I dug through my rolodex, made a few phone calls…we had 16 people at the first meeting in February 2008 and we've running monthly meetings ever since. I had no idea that it was going to turn into what it has. It was kind of a marketing tool for me to sell more stuff and I was kind of jonesing for some in-front-of-the-room time. I fell in love with public speaking and team building and so I figured I'd put those pieces together and it’s been relatively successful. Last year we had a little over 1,500 people attend events that we hosted and we hosted 73 events around the state.

Monika
So what's the overall objective of Georgia Manufacturing Alliance? Is it to put businesses with manufacturers, manufacturers with manufacturers or all of it?

Jason
It’s all of it. That’s a great question. Our goal is to support Georgia's manufacturing community in every aspect, so the goal is to figure out what manufacturers need and provide for that need…whether it be connecting them with people to buy their products and services, so helping them get connected to sell more products, but also being able to connect them to supply chains, when they need something and they need to buy raw goods or get something in process. We can help them in both aspects there, but also our service community…so our bankers and our staffing companies and accountants and that sort of thing…it's a great opportunity to make connections there as well. It's really an interesting combination for the service community because we're able to connect them with people that really understand the space. Like any other networking…I'm a big fan of the Chamber…I think I'm a member of 7 or 8 of them, so I believe in the Chambers…they're great! I would encourage everybody to join their local Chamber. You could walk into any Chamber on the planet and you could find residential real estate, you could find prepaid legal, you'll find some Mary Kay and a sign guy, right? That's just the natural thing. The service community really gets networking.

Monika
Right.

Jason
Manufacturers, not so much…they don't get out much. So it's been an educational challenge to get manufacturers engaged with networking. For the 1st two years we were doing this I was begging people "please let me explain to you what an elevator pitch was" because I had people who had been in business for 40 years and never got up in the front of the room and said what they do, which was kind of weird. We’re accustomed to networking...

Monika
Yup, you have your 30 second elevator pitch down…

Jason
Right, so we did a lot of training and getting guys and gals kind of familiar with that space, but it's been really fun to watch the growth in those companies and see them now connect better and now we've been able to bring in the service companies…like I said, we've got some great staffing companies. Smith and Howard is one of our big partners here in Atlanta…a big accounting firm…and they really focus on…that's the magic is they focus on manufacturing…so we're not having to teach them the manufacturing space and risk management, insurance and stuff. Anybody can go get a license to go write insurance, but if you don't have somebody that knows what they're doing then…

Gabe
…you don’t know what to write for.

Jason
Right. Like __ are really one of those guys that understand this space and that allows them…that allows us, with confidence, to connect them to our manufacturers and know that they’re going be taken cared of and not be practiced on. You know what I'm saying? Because manufacturers got enough challenges ahead of them. They don't need to be digging through Google trying to find somebody that can figure out some staffing issues or that kind of thing.

Gabe
Sure.

Jason
So back to your question…that was my long political answer, it being around the political time of the year…we want to give a little credit there. We really want to make sure that we give folks the opportunity to connect with service providers that they need and then connect up and down the supply chain. So we help our manufacturers sell more products, and that kind of goes both ways depending on where they are at in the supply chain, and then also were able to connect them to service companies that are a good fit. There is a trick to do that but we found some really great folks...

Gabe
You know it's kind of one of those things, you have to know the personality of both the companies on both sides and that's where knowing people over time is definitely a good advantage of being part of a group like that. Sometimes it takes a while to figure out, “is this person really going to be right for this company or not?” You're not going to stick your leg out there and say, “you totally need to use them” when you have very limited knowledge as of yet, so…

Monika
I’ve done my fair share of networking recently and I to say, I've been to some of your events and what I liked more about yours was for us…for a company like ours, I always get frustrated going to a lot of networking events because the individuals that come there, while they're great with what they do, they're just not our end clients at the end of the day. But with your type of events that we’ve gone to, there is actually the true businesses that could use services like what we offer, so yeah I've had the opportunity of being to some of your events. Overall I think it’s really good.

Jason
Very cool, I appreciate that.

Monika
So, alright we have to take a quick break. We're going to come right back. We’re going to meet with Jason Moss again and this is Ringer Radio.

{Commercial Break}

Monika
Alright, welcome back Atlanta. This is Ringer Radio with Gabe and Monika Meacham. Today we have our special guest, Jason Moss with the Georgia Manufacturing Alliance. One thing I just want to remind everyone if you have any questions for us or for Jason please give us a call at 404-369-0738. We'll field those questions and have an answer to you on next week's show.

Gabe
So you were just talking about basically going to a couple of his events and I remember, it wasn't long ago, Monika wakes me up and she’s like ‘Hurry, hurry you gotta go to an event!’ and I'm like ‘Ok.’ I didn't know what I was walking into and it was the 1st time I had been to the Manufacturing Alliance. I walk in and I'm like 'oh man, I'm wearing jeans, white tennis shoes and a shirt. I had no idea what I was walking into…

Monika
Yeah, Gabe asked me that morning if he needed to be dressed up, I said ‘Oh just wear a regular shirt, you'll be fine.’

Gabe
So I show up and there’s like 30 guys with suits on and I'm just like ‘oh, somebody invited the kid, OK, good.’ It was a good event. I've been to so many networking events and while it was structured just like all good networking events, it was nice because everybody was very chatty, for one…you go to some and…but it was a good and they were talking about some of the things that they had done, showed a couple videos. It was really engaging from the get go.

Jason
Very cool. Just so you know, we don't typically get dressed up for our events. We are a manufacturing group but the piece that you walked in on, the networking group…what we found is there is a couple different markets to get served or need to be served in the manufacturing space like we were talking about a minute ago…the service side and then the manufacturers. So GMA, we’re focused on helping support the manufacturing community with 3 primary tools. The 1st is plant tours…everybody gets that. You get to walk around in the factory, go see how stuff is made...

Monika
Now can anybody go to that, general public?

Jason
Yeah.

Gabe
Can I bring my camera?

Jason
Yeah cameras sometimes. Some places we can. Some places are really cool to...

Gabe
If you ever get the heads up where they say “yeah, bring cameras”, let me know.

Jason
Right.

Monika
So where would our folks go to find upcoming plant tours?

Jason
Well there is a couple different places that they can go. they can go to theGeorgiamanufacturingalliance.com webpage and from there they can click on upcoming events, but you can also find a list of our events and 8 other associations that we partner with on theGeorgiamanufacturingcalendar.com.

Monika
Oh! I didn't even know that existed.

Jason
A couple years ago, we partnered with the Society and Manufacturing Engineers, which is obviously for Manufacturing Engineers, and Apex, which is for operations and logistics. They do plants tours and they get together some pretty cool places too. So I got with those leaders and talked to them and I said “why don't we let your guys come to our events at the discounted member rate if you let our guys go to your events at discounted member rates" and we built that relationship to about 2 years ago. As a result of that, our membership has increased dramatically. All 3 of the organizations have increased both in membership and attendance at events because some of those groups only meet once a quarter and if you're not able to make it because of work challenges then you're 6 months out of networking. So now we've got the calendar for SMA, Apex and GMA all together on a single calendar and because of that success we've attracted to other associations as well like The Institute of Packaging Professionals or IPP and we brought in the Georgia Employers Association, which is a huge organization out of Central Georgia and then we brought in the National Defense Industry Association...

Monika
Oh, great!

Jason
…they make stuff for the Defense Industry.

Monika
That's something you should be going to, Gabe. That's up his alley.

Gabe
That’s my past life.

Jason
So it used to be that you would have to go to 6 or 7 different websites and check on their calendars and it was aggravating to coordinate all that, so I gathered all these guys together and I formed what we call the Joint Industry Association. So Joint Industry Association, check that out and get a little bit of a feel. But the agreement is...

Monika
Is that jointindustryassociation.com?

Jason
Yes. Jointindustryassociation.com and it is not Colorado based Joint Industry or nothing like that, it's a whole different…

Monika
…different type of joint.

Gabe
Is that spelled different because I don’t know if I can find it.

Jason
We’re able to connect those different industries and it’s been really cool because now if you go to theGeorgiamanufacturingcalendar.com and click on the search button, you're able to see 7 or 8 different industry associations and all the events that they host throughout the state, which allows you to be able to plug in and once you’re a member…now we are a professional industry association…we’re a membership organization so we're based on memberships and sponsorships…that's how we survive, that's how we do what we do…and once you’re a member of GMA, you can attend any of those other events at member rates…huge discounts on the other events. We’ve got an amazing event coming up March 20-22 and that is the...

Monika
A 3-day event…

Jason
It’s a 3-day event. It’s in Savannah. We’re bringing the CEO of Bluebird Bus and Kia…Randy Jackson from Kia. So the top 2 dogs in the state of automotive manufacturing. These guys combined 15,000 at Kia and probably another 5,000 or 6,000 at Bluebird, with them and they're supporting companies. So that's a pretty big group of folks, manufacturing.

Monika
You just mentioned Savanna. I want come back to that so...

Jason
Yeah, we’ll definitely circle back to Savannah. We’re doing this in partnership with the Georgia Employer’s Association. This is actually the spring Georgia Employer's Leadership Conference. This is their 35th year and they’ve asked us to partner with them on the event so we're really doing some cool stuff. It’s for C-level executives in the manufacturing space and people that are in Human Resources, on the HR side. We’re also going to be bringing in the Director of the State Worker’s Comp Board. It's going to be some pretty intense stuff.

Monika
What are they going over the whole time? What's the agenda?

Jason
It’s going to be really HR related. It's going be talking about employment loss. There's been some recent changes to legislation in Worker’s Comp in Georgia. Now I understand that that's been done. We don't get into any of the political stuff. Our organization is about making connections and helping our members make profitable business connections through the events that we host. We don't do any lobbying…there is an organization in Georgia that does that and we’re going to let them do that. We drink a lot of coffee and sometimes some other things, and get together and enjoy networking and passing business. That’s what we’re focused on. We’re really good at that and we’re going to stay in that lane. That's what we do. We recently surveyed all of our members and got some great feedback. The things that our members and manufacturers across the state are most interested in, are sales and marketing, which you guys can I believe might be able to help some of our guys out. That's one the main reasons I wanted to get connected with you because sales and marketing is the number one challenge that manufactures face in the state of Georgia. We're looking for good partners you can help us in that space. The next thing that they're interested in is Operations…operational excellence that's a big topic.

Monika
It's all about getting that profit margin down, right?

Jason
Getting that profit margin down, being more efficient that's a big deal.

Gabe
Now that's kind one of the bigger scope questions I have for you really is, backing away from the organizations but from your perspective, the state of manufacturing…what's the big push at this point? I remember the last time I was truly connected, it was like Energy Efficiencies and stuff like that. Is it still pretty much like that or is it operational efficiencies?

Jason
Yeah, Operational Efficiencies is a big piece. Safety and Ergonomics is a big piece because they want to make a good work environment, where we can keep people steady, long-term safe environments. I got a high school senior and when I talk to his peers and their parents and stuff and I say anything about manufacturing, automatically red flags go up. People look at me like 'manufacturing…that's that dirty, dangerous, dead-end job'.

Gabe
“we thought we outsourced for that”

Jason
We don't manufacture things in America anymore, much less in Georgia, but the reality is we’ve got about 10,000 manufacturing facilities in the state of Georgia and we employ over 440,000 people everyday in manufacturing.

Monika
Wow and it was probably three times, four times that only a few years ago when Carpet was still here right?

Jason
Right. Yeah I mean the textiles industry took a pretty big hit but about 10% of the economy comes directly from manufacturing. If you look at all the numbers, the National Association of Manufacturers did some studies and they said across the board, Nationwide, a manufacturing job compared to a non-manufacturing…taking out the farm stuff…but manufacturing versus nonmanufacturing pays $27,000 a year more than nonmanufacturing jobs.

Monika
Really?

Jason
$27,000 a year on average.

Gabe
You're telling me there’s something in actually making stuff?

Jason
Yeah, tons and tons and they pay well and it’s safe environments that are steady jobs.

Monika
I didn't know that they paid that much.

Gabe
And once you understand how to do the job it's not high stress work it's…

Monika
…it's making something

Jason
It's making something and in America that's a big deal. The more and more we can dig in to help and bring back American jobs and let people know that things are made here and we got tons of stuff that's made here and we'll talk about that a little bit more.

Monika
Actually we have to take a quick break and then when we come back I want to talk about Georgia and how Georgia's doing in terms of manufacturing and everything with that so again, thanks everyone. Ringer Radio. We’ll be right back.

{Commercial Break}

Gabe
Welcome back to the number one radio show in the world, broadcast live on the internet all the time. None of that's correct but Kanye West taught me a good lesson so here we go.

Monika
Alright.

Gabe
Alright so we’re back and we’re talking manufacturing and all things manufacturing, so let’s dive right back in. You had a question.

Monika
I had a question. So you know I've been hearing a lot of stuff about Savannah, Savannah Savannah. It seems like it is booming right now in terms of the manufacturing world. Is that is that true, Jason?

Jason
Yes, we got a lot of manufacturing coming back in with the deepening of the port, that is going to have economic impact on the state for...

Monika
…So what's “the deepening of the port” for those that don't know?

Jason
Governor Bill and previous administrations have worked really hard to help make the Savannah port more accessible for what they call the Panamax ship. So, large container ships that are coming through there, actually deep in the Panama Canal, they're going to be able to bring ships around…usually from Asia, when container ships come in they hit California and then they put all those goods on trucks and ship them across the country to us in the East on trucks and Rail.

Monika
So it takes even longer…

Jason
…So it takes a lot time

Monika
…It’s expensive

Jason
…It’s very expensive. But if they got all that stuff on a boat it just takes a couple days to ship…slip it around the Panama Canal and then back up into Georgia. So they've done some deepening of the Panama Canal, they got that mostly squared away. And now they’re bringing in bigger ships, it's called the Panamax ship. I'm maybe saying that the wrong way, but basically it allows to bring in a much larger container ship, nd the Port of Savannah would only allow certain size shipping because it was only so deep, but now being able to bring in these bigger container ships, that really opens us up to the import Hub of the east coast. They really designed the port…we took a tour of the Port of Savannah and I would encourage you, if you ever have the opportunity…I've taken 2 groups down to tour that Port of Savannah and to see the way that they move those containers and get them on and off those ships and it is amazing.

Gabe
With the crane?

Jason
Yeah and they’re shuffling those containers around like a little Lego blocks and it is amazing to see that thing in process. But they've really geared up the entire Port to be able to be that Hub because we got both rail coming in and out of there, of course the port and then our interstate system and Georgia, we are positioned, we’ve got everything that we need. We’ve got the raw goods, we've got the land, we've got the port, we've got the rail and guess what…here in Atlanta, we’ve got air attached to that and we’ve got a very favorable business environment. That's one of the big things in Georgia…we've been recently voted the you know the best state to do business in. The past couple of years we got great awards because we want to make sure that businesses want to come here. We want to make it convenient for them and we want to encourage that kind of growth. The good and bad to that…we’re growing like crazy and we’re bringing in a lot business, and a lot business that's coming from overseas is coming into the US.

Monika
A lot of manufacturing is coming back too right?

Jason
Tons of manufacturing…the economy in some of the overseas markets is not a lucrative as it was once because of the labor rates. Those folks are getting to be more successful and middle class and they want to buy all the gadgets they we’re buying, which is cool, but the rates have gone up and it's not as competitive. You know some of the challenges that we've seen is both quality and the availability to bring product in quickly, being able to work on first-to-market. Being able to get product to market relatively quickly, good high quality. The one thing that I have seen in my travels is the American made brand is really, really strong overseas because they know that there’s solid, quality behind that. Some of the other options that are out there don't have any quality controls like we have in the US so they know that when they buy something that's American made it's going to be good quality and it's going to be made with good safe materials. If you're giving your kid a pacifier, do you want to know that it was manufactured in a place that's, you know?

Monika
Does automation and robotics come into play at all, in terms of bringing manufacturing back here or is it really just based on labor…just the labor rates are going up?

Jason
Yeah we've got a lot of automation coming back, but along with that we are also bringing in a lot hired jobs. We just took a group of 60 folks out to Kia…took 3 different groups out to Kia last week and to see that factory, to see that work it is amazing. They roll off a car every 57 secons, off that factory line. They build the Kia Optima, the Kia Sorento and the Honda Santa Fe. All 3 run off that line. There's no 2 the same color and there's no 2 cars back to back the same fit. So you can you go through and see that production, there is a lot of automation, but the cool part about that is there's also a lot of Automation and Robotics jobs that go along to keep it...

Monika
Oh, absolutely.

Jason
That's a lot higher paying job, a lot more sustainable than you know, ‘Fred’s been sitting there running a drill press for 40 years. That's great that we’re able to keep Fred doing that, but if we got Fred an opportunity to understand Robotics and really increase his income and increase the value that he has at the company…’ So there’s a place for Automation and Robotics. We’ve got to be able to do that to be competitive. One of the areas that I really hope and pray that I see in my lifetime is the automation of textiles because we lost so much. Almost nothing that you’re wearing is made in the United States because that industry has just not embraced automation like most of the other things. It's a little more tricky to do that and I know that they are doing some work here at Georgia Tech, trying to figure out different ways, and all around the country, trying to figure out ways to better automate the textiles and the Garment industry. Hopefully we'll be able see that. But there are a few facilities that manufacture stuff here in Georgia. There's a hat factory that manufactures hats. It’s National Cap Denim, White Cross. They make ball caps and then there’s a T-Shirt company out in Washington, Georgia that manufactures…actually the T-Shirt I got on is made…Platinum Sportswear. Made out in Washington, Georgia. It’s fun to be able to go through and see some of these factories that's some pretty serious manufacturing.

Gabe
Isn't Denim USA just right down the road from here as well? I know they are big one, aren't they?

Jason
Yup. So there are several different…and it takes a lot to find that. You know one of the things that we talked about a minute ago is ‘what can't consumers do?’ I'll show you this challenge…I know you can't see it on the radio…but this is a little challenge that I have done all around the state of Georgia. I mean I've offered this...

Monika
Oooo he pulled out a hundred dollar bill, we’re rich! He’s got our attention.

Jason
It's amazing what that visual does when you pull out a hundred dollar bill. I've gone to chambers all around the state and rotary clubs and church groups and anywhere I can talk, I talk about it. You know the impact that we have as consumers about buying local. If you buy stuff that's made here guess what…if you want to live in a country that makes stuff you gotta buy stuff that's made here.

Monika
Right. Absolutely, oh that's always been one of my heartaches is listening people complain about ‘oh, all my jobs went away. They went overseas.’ A few years ago when all the complaints was there. And I'd ask them ‘where do you shop?’ And they go "oh Walmart”, or this and that and there are apparently stores that you know majority of the stuff comes from China or somewhere else. And I'm like ‘if you can't support these jobs by buying locally, how do you expect to keep your job here? You’re doing exactly, what they want and that's why they’re shipping it overseas is because of the cost.’

Jason
I see both sides of that argument. If the stores are giving what the consumers demand, if the consumers are demanding lower prices guaranteed…if that's all they're focused on, and they don’t care about quality…

Gabe
Luckily we have options on which stores we go to.

Monika
Right

Jason
Exactly. We’re going to gain control over our economy again when we get pass the thrill of the cheap purchase and start believing in and having pride in ownership.

Monika
And the quality of the purchase.

Gabe
People tell me this all the time…are you're better off you know buying $100 pair of shoes or $300 pair of shoes? Almost every single time that $300 pair shoes in the last you 10 years longer than the other pair of shoes and it's just like one of those qualities of scale. Are you willing to pay for quality because quality is going to last.

Monika
Absolutely.

Jason
People say that 'hey I'd love to buy that' and I've gone through this experiment and I’ll hold this hundred dollar bill up and I'd get in front of the Chamber of Commerce, 150 people in the room and say ‘I’ll give this to the first person that can name 5 products, that you know…’ now is not a team thing. You get out a piece of paper and you write this stuff down. But you go in there and do that and you got a 150 people in the room and say ‘I’ll give this to the 1st person that can write down 5 products that you know are manufactured in the state of Georgia.’ and the rooms go deathly silent. That's shocking because, think about it, how many products can you name? Now honestly how this little challenge works is 1. it puts you on the spot, it that makes you think quickly but when you're pushing your buggy down the aisle how much time do you have to think, right? So that's the reality, that's the challenge that you run into. So we try to figure out ways to help get consumers more connected to the brands and products that we make in Georgia. And we got tons of things, like I said 10,000 manufacturing facilities supporting about 440,000 families. But if you walk into Walmart today and said you need to get some batteries for the remote, you saw two battery displays, one said Energizer and the other said Duracell. Those are similar products and similar price, we've all bought both…

Gabe
…are you telling me one is made here?

Jason
But what if you knew for a fact that the Duracell batteries the triple A and the 9V Duracell batteries are made over in Larange, Georgia and support 400 Georgia families. Which one are you going to buy?

Monika
I'd buy Duracell. I didn't even know that.

Gabe
So why don't you just put something on it like a big Georgia sticker on every darn product.

Jason
I’m working on that, I promise you buddy, we got that in process, we're digging through that.

Monika
“Made in Georgia” or something “made local”.

Jason
So we’ve got to buy from Georgia movement, that's what we are doing and Governor Bill actually presented to me and my leadership team, for the past 2 years, a Proclamation, declaring June “buy from Georgia month”. So if you go to buyfromgeorgia.com, you can see a small list of the products that are made here.

Monika
Oh, OK, wonderful.

Jason
We've put that database together and that's a small step that you can take until we get the branding and logos on the products. We're getting there. It's on the way.

Gabe
I mean those things don't just happen overnight.

Jason
I promise you, if they did we would have made that happen. We’re getting there. We are getting there.

Monika
So with that said everyone remember: Buy From Georgia. If you can, buy from Georgia or at least buy from America, buy locally if you can.

Gabe
See we are all preaching the same thing because we don't do anything overseas either. We use local designers, local programmers and stuff like that.

Jason
Very cool

Monika
Alright, well with that said we gotta take another break. If you guys would like to call us and leave a message our number is 404-369-0738. Again Gabe and Monika with Ringer Radio. We’ll be right back.

{Commercial Break}

Monika
Welcome back Atlanta. This is Monika and Gabe Meacham me with Ringer Radio. We have Jason Moss with us again here today and we've been talking about manufacturing, Georgia, buying locally, all the good stuff so I again Jason, thank you for and for being with us today. So do you have any questions for us in terms of manufacturing companies or want talk about manufacturing and marketing?

Jason
Yeah, like I said, we recently did that survey and the key pieces that people were interested in was sales and marketing for manufacturing. We’ve recently done some trainings on that. We’ve got a couple lean classes that are coming up because it was Operational Excellence that was a big hot topic. And Leadership Development, those are the 3 top areas that we are looking at. In the midst of that, some of the other pieces are through lean and operational excellence. Automation continues to come up. That's one of the things that we've seen some facilities really dig into that. We toured the Bluebird Bus Factory 3 or 4 months ago and it was really interesting to watch the difference between Bluebird, because there's lots of manual process in that still, as compared to Kia, which is very automated.

Gabe
I can imagine the Kia plant…

Jason
There is a lot of handwork, believe it or not, because you still got to put the stuff together, so there is still very amazing craftspeople that make that stuff happen, but it was really neat to see that. What are you guys seeing in the automation space? What are you seeing out there?

Gabe
Specifically in Automation, we see a big push to shove aside a lot of the paperwork and the processes and get the processes down to real time via phone and tablet and stuff like that. Companies are writing the software that follow their processes when and when they should happen to where the systems become a living breathing thing. You don't have to wait till noon for reporting, it’s kind of as soon as stuff hits the door you know it because somebody checked it in and everybody's walking around the phone and stuff like that.

Monika
It's all real time, which is actually very different from a lot of software packages because a lot of software packages have the nightly runs, the weekly runs, to where the CFOs or the Finance people or anybody else in the operations aspect, can't really see what's going on today, they can't see what their inventory looks like or they can't see what they have left of a certain raw good or something like that because they have to wait for that nightly run. The beauty of web-based software, especially one that’s custom, is that it's designed specifically for the business. So you go in, you go and see what needs to be automated and you start creating those processes with the owners or the managers there because they made their process. They made the way they make their product, at the end of the day. And the thing that they always have to do, at a certain point in the growth life cycle, is generally they have to change that process for a software package because they grow into one.

Gabe
They also reach that glass ceiling of, if they buy into a software package it doesn't integrate with some or part of their equipment, then they’ve got really good exposure and really good visibility on one side of the house and limited to none on the other side. At some point they're going to write Bridge Software to get those missing components to talk directly to whatever the system is and we’re trying to take that concept and say “well really we’re writing Bridge Software from the get-go and pooling that data from all your machines and then writing the software on top of that.

Jason
I've seen a bunch of articles and conversations, in fact I actually had some folks reach out to me recently talking about the industrial internet-of-things…that's kind of the hot stuff that people…we’re going to be doing some trainings and some sessions around that really to help expose our manufacturers. It's funny, manufacturers are going to fit in one of two buckets, either they're right up on the edge…very few are...but most of them don't want anything to do with it.

Monika
They still use antique computers. We've been into a bunch of those manufacturers where...

Gabe
…What’s funny is if you look at those they are the same ones that are running off their same custom built dos systems from 10-15 years ago…

Jason
Yeah they’re shackled to it.

Gabe
The reason is a lot of times it doesn't make sense to move out just because…so we like to go in and say ‘we’re not trying to change the way you doing anything, we are just trying to change the way it all gets logged.’

Monika
…and the way it gives you visibility and the way it predicts your future because that's where I come into play. I'm a finance expert and I love the future. The future can help make or break a business. If they start bleeding somewhere and they don't know where that bleeding is coming from and they can't predict the future well, they could end up losing a lot of money. So that's where my expertise comes into play, is making sure that the visibility is there and the ability to forecast is there as well. With a lot of the software we do that. Gabe's done some cool software before for specifically the corks where they put color in the plastic. They had done everything manually at the time…the PO would come in, call, somebody would take it, handwrite it in, walk down to the to the back room, hand it over to the guy in the manufacturing facility, they’d go and put the color in and then it’d get handed back to somebody else and to get handed to somebody else…

Gabe
…the bigger part, the real efficiency became when somebody had to sit there and figure out, based on all the orders that we have, ‘what should be the priority of what gets run and what do we need to order more of so we don't deplete our supplies tomorrow’ and their process for doing it was very manual. You know took about 3 hours every day to figure that out. Once we followed the paper and just said ‘OK, show me where it's all going. Show me your whole process.’ I sit and I studied the lady that did that particular job. I replicated her entire process just using digital. It gave her the flexibility of being able to choose what she is going to do, because only she is going to really know what needs to get ordered or not. But at the same time it showed her hierarchical ‘OK, look, you're getting really close on this, you might need to do...’

Monika
And there wasn't anything that they could use in terms of a boxed product, without changing it a lot and with that comes a lot of other costs and additional fees and stuff when it comes to changing a software model.

Gabe
That's kind of, one of the big needles that we follow. You did mention also, sales being a big need and I don't know how to put things other than to say ‘most companies don't know how fascinating they really are.’

Jason
That's a good way to put that. I like that.

Gabe
Most companies, when you when you talk to them about ‘is there anything interesting that you would want to blog about?’ The simplest thing and you have a pool of 200 people who all work there everyday and all of them scratch their head and go 'not really'. So a lot of it is us going in on that side and going ‘OK, let’s choose. What's the best parts of your business? Let's figure out how to build marketing campaigns around those things.’ We've done a really good job on some companies, just kind of using the website as a portal to open the doors to let people see what happens inside the plant.

Monika
Because people love that.

Gabe
It gives a face to the different departments and stuff like that.

Jason
People love to do plant tours. The facilities that I’ve seen have nice web-tours and stuff and they get some really good traffic on that because people like to go see how stuff’s made. They might not be able to take the day off and go with us to some of these tours. If they can we want them to come.

Gabe
That's what I'm saying I mean, anytime I can get something on a machine working, I’m doing something...

Jason
Plug it in and make it go.

Gabe
Whether the needle’s on both sides of it, we really like manufacturing. We really like the process of…

Jason
We’d really like to have you guys come hang out with us. Like I said, we’ve got a ton of events coming up. We’ve got some lien trainings coming up, some sales and marketing stuff, leadership development. This Leadership Conference that we’ve got coming up in March is a big deal and then…we’re going to do Sunday, Monday, Tuesday at the Leadership and then we’re going to take Wednesday we’re going to take a tour of Golf Stream. I’ve been waiting to get down there for a while. Once we get a few things lined up…the people who register for the conference will get first dibs on the tour but we will have a couple spaces that we’ll keep open for the general public so, if you want to learn, check stuff out. You want to go to Georgiamanufacturingcalendar.com and you can see that plus all the other stuff that we got lined up.

Monika
Awesome and of course they can also go to georgiamanufacturingalliance.com for your specific organization. Is there a number we want to give out to the listeners if they need to reach out to you for some reason.

Jason
Yeah, we'd love to have anybody that has any questions about manufacturing and any stuff that is going on in our space. Give us a call at our office number at 770-338-0051 and of course you can reach me by email at Jason@Georgiamanufacturing.com. Feel free to touch base with us there.

Monika
Awesome, alright, well Jason we had a great day, thank you for coming out to talk with us again. It goes by fast when you talk about something you love right? Manufacturing, building stuff. We have a dream of someday coming up with…well I have a dream of coming up with a product. Someday I will figure it out.

Jason
That sounds like a plan. I’ll help you with that.

Monika
Alright so thanks again everyone for listening to us. If you have any questions for Ringer Radio or for Jason, and you want answers, please give us a call at our number 404-369-0738 we will field those calls and get to them on the next show. Thanks again everyone. This is Monika and Gabe Meacham with Ringer Radio. Remember www.hirearinger.com.

Read 1074 times Last modified on Wednesday, 18 May 2016 15:12

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