Archives for the ‘Quality’ Category

You Need Lean Maintenance to Make Lean Manufacturing Succeed!

Written by Lawrence Bouvier, CMRP
Vice President – Fuss & O’Neill Manufacturing Solutions

Is equipment downtime holding you back from achieving Lean Manufacturing success?

We all have heard of the seven wastes addressed in Lean Manufacturing, but did you ever consider that if you applied similar principles to equipment health, you’d want a discipline to create Lean Maintenance?

Overproduction, Inventory and Waiting are three of the seven lean wastes that can come as a result of equipment failures.  A good maintenance process will keep these to minimum levels.  So, how can we achieve this?  The only way is to minimize the amount of maintenance and repair that we perform on machines!

Doran Scales, Inc. Has Completed ISO 9001:2015 Registration

Doran Scales

Pictured left to right – Steve Schiera (IMEC), Shani Podl (VP, Doran Scales) Mark Podl (CEO, Doran Scales) Ken Wunderlich (IMEC)

Written by Jim Dunbar, IMEC Marketing Coordinator

IMEC is very pleased to announce that Doran Scales, Inc. of Batavia, IL has completed the ISO 9001:2015 registration, demonstrating their on-going commitment to total customer satisfaction and quality improvement. The single most instrumental factor which has established Doran’s strong position in the market is a straight forward desire to “Provide the best customer service in the industry.”

Process Maps: Building block basics for your business

Written by Gretchen Clifton, IMEC Technical Specialist

The new ISO 9001:2015 standard places more emphasis on understanding our processes; how they impact our business from an individual process standpoint as well as how they integrate with other processes. The key to success is creating processes that are efficient and effective, integrate well with others for a cohesive flow from start to finish, and ultimately, provide the results we need.

Many companies have a high level process map that fulfills the requirements of ISO or TS, or perhaps as an outcome of a value stream mapping activity. They created it, but has it really been used for anything?

Are you complying to federal rule on Preventive Control for food production?

Preventive control qualified individualIt’s no surprise the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) has inflicted more stringent controls on U.S. food and related manufacturers; and we should find comfort in the changes. But how are you, the manufacturer, addressing the preventive control requirements for your organization?

United Group, Inc achieves ISO 9001:2008 registration

United GroupIMEC is happy to announce United Group, Inc. has successfully implemented a quality management system and become certified to the ISO 9001:2008 standard.  Achieving ISO 9001:2008 registration is an important milestone for United Group as it illustrates a strong commitment to quality at all levels of the organization including the commitment to their customers, and truly, all stakeholders. It is an on-going effort that demonstrates the dedication of all members of the team.

Congrats to Share Machine for completing ISO 9001:2008 registration

IMEC is happy to announce Share Machine Inc. has successfully implemented a quality management system registration to ISO 9001:2008.  Achieving ISO 9001:2008 registration is an important milestone for Share Machine as the certification illustrates a strong commitment to quality at all levels of the organization and a commitment to quality to all customers.Share Machine

Accomplishing the ISO 9001:2008 registration also clearly demonstrates Share Machine’s company-wide commitment to providing their partners with a quality product and service. This commitment is reflected by all members of the team.

IMEC delivers unique skill sets for Food Manufacturers

Food manufacturers account for a large portion of products manufactured in Illinois every year, so it’s imperative that companies within this industry utilize the right people with the right skill set for manufacturing improvements.  From operational and workforce inefficiencies to quality control and product compliance, these food manufacturers require a diverse set of capabilities.  Right here at IMEC we employ several technical specialists that have spent a portion of their career working in the food industry. Meet Ken Wunderlich and Alex Nunez…

IMEC to host Lean Six Sigma Green Belt Series for Manufacturers

Lean Six Sigma Green BeltIntegrate concepts of Lean and Six Sigma to increase productivity, boost quality

The Illinois Manufacturing Extension Center (IMEC) is launching a Lean Six Sigma Green Belt training series on June 8th in southern Illinois for small and mid-sized manufacturers to learn how to integrate concepts of Lean and Six Sigma to increase productivity and ultimately, boost quality in their facility. This group training serves as a first step to positioning a company to realize significant savings through the Lean Six Sigma effort, providing short term payback and ongoing savings as processes are continuously improved.


The Lean Six Sigma Green Belt candidates will undergo eight days of intensive training, over an 8-week period. The training will be conducted one day each week at John A. Logan College in Carterville, in partnership with JALC’s engineering department and continuing education. Prior to the series start, candidates will meet with the Black Belt trainer to discuss their specific objectives of the course and establish the potential project for initiation throughout the series. Courses to be led by Jim Pape, IMEC Quality Professional and Six Sigma Black Belt with more than 30 years of manufacturing and quality service experience.


For more information, or to register, visit or contact Amy Fitzgerald, IMEC Marketing Manager, at 309-677-2977 or


About IMEC

IMEC was established in 1996 with the goal of improving the productivity and competitiveness of Illinois’ small and mid-sized manufacturing firms. A non-profit economic development organization, IMEC is funded in part by the National Institute of Standards and Technology/ Manufacturing Extension Partnership, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, and through fees paid by Illinois manufacturers for IMEC’s services. IMEC has 13 offices statewide and 35 full-time manufacturing improvement specialists.

Quality Essentials for Manufacturers Training Series to Be Hosted by IMEC

Quality Essentials for ManufacturersAffordable group training coming to Rockford area to introduce quality concepts and tools

IMEC (Illinois Manufacturing Extension Center) is launching a new series on June 6th in northern Illinois for small and mid-sized manufacturers to learn about quality concepts fundamental to operations. This group training on quality essentials for manufacturers serves as a cost effective way to bring together several different areas, and specific topics, to address quality concerns under one project. The various courses will detail and demonstrate the fundamental Quality Management System concepts and principles enabling manufacturers to reap maximum benefits.

Auditing ISO 50001 Energy Management Systems

Schulz_IMEC_Manufacturing_SpecialistIMEC Colleague Mark Baer and I recently attended a three day training session in Kokomo, Indiana focused on Internal Auditing of ISO 50001, the Energy Management System standard.  The basic principles for auditing ISO 50001 are the same as for the ISO 9001 Quality Management System, and the ISO 50001 standard is structured similarly to ISO 9001.  The key difference for ISO 50001 is the requirement to measure and audit energy performance.

Energy savings and cost reductions are on the minds of many companies as they look to save money and the environment.  These companies are reaching out to third parties for support in implementing energy saving solutions but ISO 50001 is not a tool for simply reducing energy costs.  A key aspect of ISO 50001 is better management of energy consumption.

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