Northwest Florida Manufacturing News Monthly
NWFMC Annual Luncheon Celebrates Link Between Education, Manufacturing and Florida’s Economic Growth
More than 50 guests attended the NWFMC Annual Luncheon at the Panama City Beach Sheraton Hotel in October. The Council’s founding director, Jennifer Grove, reminded attendees of the great effort it took to initiate the Council and what an impressive feat it was. Six years later, it is still unmatched in a coordinated collaboration between schools and manufacturers.
It was likewise appropriate for Dr. Eric Hall, Florida Department of Education Chancellor for Innovation, to speak at the annual meeting. He spoke about the FDOE’s goal to lead the nation in workforce education by 2030. In his presentation, Hall showed that Florida is already accelerating in high-quality degree or credentials faster than the national pace.
Chief Economist for Florida Chamber Foundation, Jerry Parrish, PH.D., also spoke at the luncheon. Parrish’s presentation showed job creation in Florida is nearly twice the national rate with Education and Health Services leading in growth. Parrish also showed a rise in annual manufacturing wages from $319.3 billion in 2015 to $377.7 billion in 2018. 
The luncheon ended with a warm sentiment of gratitude and presentation of the NWFMC Manufacturing Academy’s Teacher of the Year Award given to Ted Missildine. Missildine was recognized for his efforts to design a program that helps students see opportunities. His impassioned speech, which included the importance of manufacturers engaging with the students and teachers, parents, and the community was followed by a standing ovation.
“We have to be a part of the conversation if we want to be part of the solution,” Missildine said.
Following the annual luncheon, 14 manufacturers and educators stayed behind to discuss current, future and ideal states of the Council with FLATE. Plans were set to deal with longer term needs for the organization. The group is determined to remain relevant and continue to be a leader in the community. 
Success Story: Sea3D - Additive Manufacturing Tooling Components
Company Profile:
The Hitachi Cable America (HCA) facility, located in Pensacola, Florida produces brake hose assemblies for North American based automobile manufacturers.

As a tier One automotive supplier, HCA is dedicated to providing the highest quality products to their customers…. In addition to meeting customer production demands, HCA also supports aftermarket service demand for a minimum of 15 years after a vehicle model is no longer in production. Often expensive and long lead-time tooling and check fixtures are required to support the production of these brake hoses assemblies. To meet customer expectations, it is imperative that HCA also be able to make changes as required while still meeting delivery schedules. Traditional tooling can be expensive, and lengthens the response time to changes. In cases where proof of concept for tooling / fixture designs are needed, it can be expensive and time consuming. 

FloridaMakes at UWF (Florida Manufacturing Extension Partnership for the Northwest section of Florida) arranged a tour for the General Manager of Process Engineering from HCA to see the Sea3D additive manufacturing lab at the University of West Florida (UWF). During the tour, there was discussion on the capabilities of additive manufacturing (AM) processes, material options and logical application areas for HCA to use AM. 

A few weeks later, HCA found themselves in an immediate need for a brake tube holding fixture to ensure process conformance. FloridaMakes was able to get the fixture quickly made in the Sea3D lab to address the urgent need, and at a lower cost than traditional tooling. Since that time, HCA has had other fixtures made using the Sea3D additive manufacturing lab. HCA has benefited from using the additive manufacturing lab due to the flexibility in prototyping, quick turnaround of fixtures compared to traditional metalworking processes, and lower cost.  
Stats Show Communications Gap Between Job Seekers and Postings
by: Amy Newburn
Director of Marketing Research
Job postings and online profiles give regional researchers more access than ever to the skills that exist in the twenty-first century workforce. The following provides insight into the supply and demand of relevant manufacturing skills by comparing the frequency of skills present in job postings against skills present in the thirteen-county Northwest Florida workforce. Manufacturing companies employ a variety of employees and require many different types of skill sets.

The distribution is so large that the most common hard skill advertised by manufacturers in our region since January 2018 is “selling techniques” – which showed up in only 9% of postings. This skill showed up in only about 4% of regional talent’s online profiles. Other hard skills sought by manufacturers that were infrequent in profiles included strategic business unit skills and systems integration. Soft skills are often identified by employers as a significant “skills gap” in the local talent pool.

In Northwest Florida, about 37% of manufacturers’ job postings called for innovation or innovative thinking as an attractive skill in a potential candidate. However, zero percent of regional talent profiles in the industry listed this skill online. Similar skills gaps identified were a valid driver’s license and communications.
FloridaMakes Hosts Project Management and CAPM Exam Workshop
FloridaMakes hosted a Project Management Professional (PMP) and CAPM exam preparation workshop in Fort Walton Beach in late October. The program provided participants with an overview of the core project management skills including communication, negotiation and conflict resolution and project management methodologies.
“What a great class! As an HR professional, my intention was to gain more knowledge on the soft skills being presented; however, I received much more than expected and felt more connected to the others professionals in the class,” said Jore Whiten of General Electric. “The instructor was engaged and very charismatic. His presentation style was one of a kind. I would definitely recommend this training to any professional. You’ll learn something for sure.”
Register for the next “Lunch & Learn” workshop at .
Florida Manufacturing and Logistics Council
Announces 2020 Legislative Priorities
TALLAHASSEE - The Florida Manufacturing and Logistics Council (FMLC) announced its 2020 Legislative Priorities today in the state capital. The Council met with lawmakers and key influencers to garner support and tout their initiatives.

“Manufacturers from across the state are urging lawmakers to show their support for our industry,” said FMLC President Lake Ray. “As an organization, we represent nearly half a million businesses, employees and partners that support the manufacturing industry in Florida. We will ‘make’ sure these policymakers hear our voice and advocate for this critical segment of Florida’s economy,” Ray concluded.

FMLC’s legislative priorities include a renewed focus on fully funding Florida’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), FloridaMakes. For the last five years, Florida underfunded this critical partnership and lost Federal matching funds that strengthen Florida’s manufacturing industry and improve the economy. FloridaMakes has had an economic impact on Florida’s economy of over $1 billion. This includes increased or retained sales of $848.8 million, total cost savings of $110.5 million, total investments of $285.5 million (equipment, new products, skills and other), and 8,362 jobs created or retained (the survey results represent data from 315 firms serviced since 2016).

“We’re grateful for FMLC’s support of FloridaMakes,” said Kevin Carr, CEO of FloridaMakes. “The influence and personal stories FMLC and their partners bring to the table make their voice especially important to the conversation. It’s a great value to invest in manufacturing,” Carr continued. “For every one worker in manufacturing, there are another four employees hired elsewhere.”

FMLC is also seeking to increase training funds for manufacturing through CareerSource Florida, reform workers’ compensation rates, support vocational education opportunities and eliminate the sales tax for commercial rent
for manufacturers. Florida’s manufacturing industry supports 381,800 high-wage jobs with an average annual salary of $61,735. There are 20,557 manufacturing establishments across Florida and the industry industry accounts for 4.95 percent of Florida’s Gross State Product. Approximately 80 percent of Florida manufacturers have 20 or fewer employees.
The Florida Manufacturing & Logistics Council (FMLC) is a statewide advocacy organization with the mission of representing the Florida manufacturing and logistics industries to assure their prosperity. Its mission is to strengthen and grow manufacturing in Florida. FMLC serves as subject matter expert before the Florida Legislature and Executive offices.
Member companies from the following regional manufacturers associations participated in the announcement: Bay Area Manufacturers Association, First Coast Manufacturers Association, Nature Coast Manufacturers’ Association, Manufacturers Association of Central Florida, South Florida Manufacturers Association and the Sarasota Manatee Manufacturers Association. Board members and executive directors from the FloridaMakes network and the Florida Manufacturing & Logistics Council were also present.

The FloridaMakes network is an industry-led initiative operated by Florida's Regional Manufacturers Associations in partnership with industry, research, educational and economic development organizations, both public and private, at the state and national levels. The network operates with the sole mission of strengthening and advancing Florida's economy by improving the productivity and technological performance of its manufacturing sector, with an emphasis on small- and medium-sized firms. It accomplishes this by providing services focused on three principle value streams: technology adoption, talent development, and business growth. As a NIST MEP approved Center, FloridaMakes is the official representative of the MEP National Network in the State of Florida. For more information, please contact us at .
Regional Manufacturing Calendar
Board of Directors Conference Call
Wednesday, December 18th
1 p.m. to 2 p.m. CDT
l AS9100 Internal Auditor Training
Schedule: Tuesday 14 Jan - Thursday 16 Jan
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Wicked Problem Solving
Schedule: Tuesday, Feb. 18 2020
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.
This newsletter was developed in collaboration with the University of West Florida and FloridaMakes.