CONNSTEP, Inc. Hosts First Northeastern Technology Collaboration Summit
February 14, 2017
(ROCKY HILL, Conn., Feb. 14, 2017) – CONNSTEP, Inc. hosted the first Northeastern Technology Collaboration Summit on Jan. 30, 2017 at the Sheraton Hartford South Hotel in Rocky Hill, Conn.
The goal of the summit was to explore how collaboration between manufacturers and sources of technology including federal labs, universities and other institutions could be improved to help grow manufacturing business in the Northeast. The NE collaborative is part of a national effort to create regional critical masses for collaboration driven by NIST (Dept. of Commerce) and the Federal labs. Four other regions are already in operation.
More than 50 attendees representing small manufacturers, universities, federal labs, federal and Connecticut state government agencies, technology institutes and manufacturing service providers participated in the day’s activities.
Summit members chose composite technology, an important technology for Connecticut’s aerospace and shipbuilding industries, to highlight current key collaborative efforts allowing attendees to explore what was working and what needed to be improved.
During the summit, a comprehensive study entitled, “The Technology Driven Market Intelligence Report”, was shared with attendees. The report was conducted to assess the technology needs of Connecticut manufacturers, identify available lab technology resources within the region and ways to increase connections and have access to them.
Ben Vickery, Senior Technical Advisor, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), cited the various connections between the regional collaborative and other activities driven by Commerce to expand and enhance manufacturing in the U.S., several of which are already underway at UCONN, and involve Connecticut manufacturers and OEMs.
The summit also included topical discussions on the importance of composites to the manufacturing industry and presentations on collaborative models by Dr. Paul Nahass, Director of the Industrial Affiliates Program, at UConn. Dr. Tom Maloney of CCAT shared a proven model and vision for a Composites Center of Excellence. Other discussions were led by Valerie Larkin, Naval Undersea Warfare Center; Dr. Alex Epstein, U.S. DOT Volpe Center; and Chris Hart, Navatek Ltd. and centered on using federal labs as a resource.
The summit concluded with agreement that there is a strong need to enhance regional collaboration in composite and other technologies. There are some concrete steps that can be taken now to enlarge the collaboration in composite technology with economic impact on Connecticut. Many agreed to take part in a next session and to expand the audience and resources in the Northeast region.
“CONNSTEP solved a huge problem for us and helped us bring our delivery rate to 100%. As a direct result of that, we have been awarded with an increase in business which, ultimately, will also benefit (our supplier) Har-Conn.”
“I see great value in the new experiences and perspectives CONNSTEP brings to our business, at reasonable prices. They’re not like consultants, they’re like partners in the business – willing to roll up their sleeves and help.”
“CONNSTEP has proved to be a tremendous resource for ESI. CONNSTEP has helped us to adapt to today’s marketplace and remain a quality minded, competitive global player. Our ISO/TS16949 implementation process was efficient and rewarding. I look forward to our future projects with CONNSTEP.”
“CONNSTEP worked with FuelCell Energy to educate and facilitate Lean initiatives and to help meet our needs to establish an overall production improvement plan. This plan has been utilized over a period of time as a ‘guiding light’ to spur numerous improvements that dramatically reduced our product cost.”
“CONNSTEP is a valuable partner to Hologic, providing the expertise and ‘outside eyes’ everyone needs to keep their continuous improvement on track. We are now well-positioned on a dynamic growth path and look forward to a long-term relationship with CONNSTEP.”
“Our experience working with CONNSTEP has brought us benefits we never expected. It’s a great team to work with!”
“The goals of the team were to reduce manufacturing lead-time, reduce floor space utilized, and increase worker productivity. All the goals were met. CONNSTEP helped us to better compete.”
“The Business Growth Program is working well for us. We enhanced our website following the meetings to improve our SEO and become more visible to search engines. The segment on negotiating … promoted changes in our thinking and improved how we interact with customers. The mentoring between sessions was helpful in boosting our progress.”