QMT News: July 2008
Editor's comment

It’s a commonplace that in our world, everything is being driven faster, higher, quicker - or at least that’s what the OEM’s are demanding  from their suppliers. Usually adding - all at lower cost, or they’ll go to China. They all want more bangs for their buck, as the Americans say.
 Incidentally, the “buck” has dropped massively in value compared to, say, the euro  - something like 12%  over the last year with the pound following it down. All of which give a tremendous opportunity to those manufacturers exporting from USA and UK. But of course,  we are in global supply chains and so are not immune from rising prices being imported into our manufacturing processes. Still, there is an export opportunity here for the UK and USA.
 It is also interesting to note how the trading results of companies which operate in different currency markets can be distorted in quite significant ways, making it quite difficult to compare year-on-year performance.
Not relying on the vagaries of currency fluctuations but rather on innovation and quality  to ensure survival,  is a less risky strategy  and one that manufacturers can have some control over. Plenty of go ahead manufacturers have streamlined their work flows, designed for manufacturability and invested in the latest machinery - and get results - precision manufactured products with high value added content, competitively priced.
If you invest in sophisticated, highly productive machinery, then it makes sense to look at the supporting services such as QC inspection. Producing complex, expensive machined parts means looking at automating the  inspection process to cope with the increase throughput - and here I recommend you to read our feature on page 7 for one company’s story.

Brendan Coyne

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