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Last updateFri, 15 Dec 2017 3pm

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Business & Management

Inspiration and Automation: Keys to Best-in-Class Operations

For the last several years, at industry gatherings of all kinds, the subject of automation is guaranteed to dominate the conversation. Whether it’s the latest digital control system to monitor and operate valves, or the “threat” to jobs from robots and machine learning, digital advances have created opportunities and challenges for employers and employees alike.

At the 2017 Emerson Global Users Exchange, Mike Train, executive president of Emerson Automation Solutions, pointed out during his keynote address that “the past 30 years have brought us fantastic advances in the manufacturing sector, including greater operating efficiencies enabled by automation, but the incremental benefits gained are diminishing. The pressure is on industry leaders to take the next step to the game-changing performance made possible by digitally empowering the workforce.”


Six Secrets to Attract, Hire and Retain Sales Professionals

Manufacturers and distributors across all economic sectors are adopting and integrating inside sales models in record numbers. The scalability, measurability and predictability of this model has made it the new preferred channel for companies who have a mandate from stakeholders to grow sales and revenue quickly and within budget constraints.

This shift has caused demand for talent to outstrip supply. Attracting, hiring and retaining people is harder than ever before as companies compete for the same, small, limited pool of knowledgeable, revenue-generating talent. It’s an insidious problem that can thwart inside initiatives and diminish a company’s ability to hit sales and revenue goals.

Early Project Team Communications Leads to a More Successful Outcome

It is becoming increasingly difficult for process manufacturers and producers to execute large capital projects. Edward Merrow, founder and president of Independent Project Analysis (IPA) and author of Industrial Megaprojects—Concepts, Strategies, and Practices for Success, noted that:

“…large, complex projects in petroleum, minerals, chemicals and power fail much too often for comfort. Large cost overruns, major delays poor operability, and far too many safety incidents characterize well over half of the industrial projects of $1 billion or more around the world.”

Even smaller projects are having difficulties in meeting budgets and time schedules due to the growing complexity of expertise required to successfully plan and execute these projects.

The Manufacturer’s Guide to Digitizing 7 Key Business Processes

Many manual and ad hoc processes are used to manage the unstructured information that surrounds key manufacturing processes. Making things even more complex is the fact that the macro-business processes in manufacturing are actually clusters of multiple document-intensive processes, managing a wide variety of often incompatible document types throughout.

Each process typically has its own information management needs and requirements, and often rests upon a dedicated process platform (e.g., MRP/ERP Software, Product Lifecycle Management Software, Supply Chain Management Software, Manufacturing Execution Systems, and Production Scheduling and Control Systems).

Six Tips for Successful Listening: The Importance of Being Earnest

In business or in life, one of the most valuable skills to master is listening, yet, according to Nikki Bishop and Bruce Smith in a presentation at the 2016 Emerson Global Users Exchange, less than 2% of all professionals have had formal education or learning to understand and improve listening skills and technique.

While few managers or human resources professionals make good listening skills a prerequisite for employment, executive sales coach Keith Rosen points out that ability to actively listen has been proven to dramatically improve the capabilities of a professional salesperson. “Most of the time we believe listening is simply hearing the words coming out of the client’s mouth,” he said in a recent article. But listening is much more than that.

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