IMEC, TMA joining forces to serve Chicago area manufacturers
Alliance will enable small and mid-sized companies to create jobs and improve their global competitiveness
[Park Ridge, IL] – Illinois’ premier full service manufacturing association is combining resources with the state’s manufacturing improvement experts to provide Chicago land companies with new tools, capabilities and services to increase productivity and grow.
Under a new alliance, members of the Tooling and Manufacturing Association (TMA) will have rapid access to implementation-training and consulting services provided by the Illinois Manufacturing Extension Center (IMEC). Part of a nationwide network of federally-funded non-profit organizations, IMEC was recently awarded a $2.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program to serve the Chicago land market. IMEC’s expansion to the region makes it Illinois’ exclusive provider of quality, efficiency, cost reduction, and growth services under the MEP umbrella.
“TMA’s partnership with IMEC is an ideal arrangement,” said Brian McGuire, TMA President. “Working together, we’ll be able to leverage IMEC’s proven business-building capabilities for our members and other manufacturers in Chicago land, and provide more companies with the hands-on expertise they need to be productive and globally competitive.”
Founded in 1925, TMA provides member companies with education, advocacy, training, employee benefits, human resources assistance, and pooled purchasing and insurance services. Its membership is comprised of the leading manufacturers of products and services for all manufacturing sectors. TMA has 1000 members, ranging from smaller sole-proprietorships, to large multi-plant corporations.
IMEC’s full-time industry specialists, many who have recognized credentials in areas such as lean manufacturing and six sigma – will work on-site at TMA-member facilities, providing them with the capability to improve quality and efficiency, contain costs, develop new products and growth strategies, and more. Since being created in 1996, IMEC has generated more than $1 billion in productivity, sales and cost-saving economic benefits for Illinois manufacturers.
“Through our collaboration with TMA, more companies will get the hands-on help they need to respond to today’s competitive pressures and position for long-term success,” said Bob Weinstein, IMEC President-Emeritus. “I can’t think of a better organization to join forces with to extend IMEC’s capabilities into the Chicago land region, than TMA. We’re excited about this partnership and the results we can generate together.”
The two organizations will also produce information workshops and webinars, and IMEC will market TMA member-benefits to its clients. Several IMEC specialists and project managers will be based at TMA’s headquarters in Park Ridge.
Globalization has created a fiercely competitive environment for domestic manufacturers. Firms of all sizes and smaller firms in particular, are challenged by a fast-paced market with high demands for quality, cost and delivery. IMEC’s team of manufacturing specialists and affiliated partners assists more than 450 Illinois manufacturers each year. Major IMEC solutions include operating cost reduction, quality improvement, continuous improvement, technology & innovation, and market diversification/growth strategies. A non-profit organization with 10 field office locations throughout Illinois, IMEC is part of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership, a program of the U.S. Department of Commerce that includes 59 nationwide non-profit outreach centers and nearly 2,000 full-time manufacturing specialists. IMEC also receives additional funding from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. More information can be found at www.imec.org
TMA was formed with the philosophy that 8 small manufacturing companies could better themselves through association with each other. Since then, TMA has evolved into Illinois’ Premier Manufacturing Association, with over 1,000 precision manufacturing and supplier members that are bettering the industry through association. TMA is a non-profit association that is committed to recognizing manufacturers as value-added producers of goods and services, and creators of high quality jobs for Illinois citizens. TMA supports industry by providing educational opportunities, industry representation and services to foster member company global competitiveness. Governed by a Board of Directors composed of representatives from member companies, TMA represents and promotes the interests of all members serving as a forum and a clearinghouse for the exchange of ideas and information. This association fosters a sense of mutual support and unity among the members and the industry as a whole. For more information on the TMA, please visit, www.tmanet.com.