Ambix faced its challenges like other companies. “New Hampshire has a very tight-labor market, rising electrical costs, and an extremely volatile raw material market,” said Florio. “But all of those things paled in comparison to the Covid-19 pandemic and the challenges that came with it.” That was when Melissa and Jeff realized that Ambix needed to expand its customer base and diversify into new markets. Around this time Melissa heard about a marketing information session workshop put on by NH MEP and presented by their 3rd party partner TribalVision- a cutting-edge digital marketing firm.
AeroDynamics had the foresight to realize NIST 800-171 compliance would be trickling down to them. “We wanted to get ahead of the curve to ensure our business with the DoD and the Primes would not be interrupted,” said Bilodeau. “We also wanted a way to get ahead of our competitors with this but we were not sure where to start.” Then through a networking event Cara attended she found out about NH MEP’s information session, “Cybersecurity for DoD Manufacturers.”
Steve was approached by NH MEP about a new program they offered called TDMI or Technology Driven Market Intelligence. TDMI identifies the benefits and the market impacts related to a company’s technology-based products, and provides customized actionable intelligence.
“The major issue that had been getting more difficult for us over the last 15 years was, customers wanted things faster,” said Turner Hansel, President of Filtrine. “So we looked into our processes to see where we can cut down our time. We found out engineering was holding things up.” They needed to cut 2 weeks out of engineering but how to do that?
“We looked at our operation as if it was a manufacturing facility rather than greenhouse,” said Mike Goyette, Operations Manager for Pleasant View Gardens. “So out of necessity to improve our operating margin, we needed to look at how we do our work more efficiently and more effectively with better balance.”
“We were looking to increase our business,” said Ed Nordengren, Operation Manager for MuShield. “That led to us getting more inquiries from the aerospace and defense industries.” Those inquiries meant MuShield was being sent more complex, detailed drawings where GD&T was needed to understand and manufacture the components.
NIST 800-171 Compliance Allowed Tech Resources, Inc. To Continue Their Work Uninterrupted With The U.S. Department of Defense
“All our work is for the DoD,” said Gary Andrews, President of Tech Resources, Inc. “So when we heard that the DoD’s NIST 800-171 cybersecurity requirements would be flowing down to their contractors in the near future, we wanted to get ahead of it in order to meet those requirements and not have any interruptions in our business with them.”
They tried to create their own cybersecurity System Security Plan (SSP) but soon found many areas that needed shoring up. That was also when their IT Manager at the time was about to attend the NH MEP NIST 800-171 Cybersecurity for Manufacturers information session.
“I started at XMA in 2013,” said Marc Smith, President and CEO of XMA Corporation. “Because my background was in aerospace, I understood the value of a Quality Management System. We needed a robust QMS because it would strengthen our company culture. The employees would create it, follow it, be accountable for it and own it. This leads to a solid company culture where together every employee benefits.”
XMA’s customers were also pushing back on them to have a QMS. “At the time not much of our work was in aerospace,” said Smith. “But by having a QMS it would allow us to enter new markets and lead to sustainability and continued growth of the company.”
Marc eventually heard about NH MEP’s AS9100D On-Site Registration Upgrade training and enrolled XMA.
Costa Precision Learns Lean Training is a Continuous Process for Retaining and Getting New Customers
“Customers only like two things, quality and on-time delivery,” said Tom Barber, Chief Operating Officer for Costa Precision. “But we were struggling in manufacturing engineering with quoting and manufacturing processes prior to going to the shop floor. This caused irregular workflow, and customer quote deadlines to be missed.”
The manufacturing floor had its share of issues too. “We were failing to provide needed quantities of parts per shift, per day. This led to poorer quality parts being produced because we would get behind schedule and had to rush parts out the door,” said Barber. “This also led to late deliveries.”
They knew they needed to do something to overcome these challenges and not lose customers.