WisBusiness: Major manufacturers announce plan to aid U.S.-based suppliers
Three Wisconsin manufacturers, in partnership with a non-profit manufacturing consulting group, have announced plans to help their American suppliers improve their speed, quality and efficiency.
Harley-Davidson, Deere & Company, Oshkosh Truck Corp. and the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership announced the initiative during WMEP's Manufacturing Matters! conference Wednesday in Milwaukee.
“These companies recognize the importance of maintaining a strong U.S. supply base that can provide the flexibility, cost and quality necessary for their products to be competitive, ” said Michael Klonsinski, WMEP’s executive director.
In Wisconsin alone, Harley-Davidson, Deere and Oshkosh Truck spend more than $1 billion with manufacturers that employ 50,000 people. The first phase of the new initiative provides resources for pilot supplier improvement projects, establishes a vehicle for the large manufacturers and WMEP to share best practices, and leverages MEP services in other states to provide ongoing support to the companies’ Midwest supply base.
Oshkosh Truck Corp. president and CEO Robert G. Bohn pledged his company’s support in a statement read at the conference.
“Our companies sell and source products throughout the world,” Bohn said. “Through this initiative, we will collaborate on best practices for U.S. supplier development and expand our work with manufacturing extension partnerships in other states to help maintain a strong U.S. supply chain infrastructure.
“All three of our companies have had an excellent working relationship with the Wisconsin MEP over the years and are impressed with its ability to help many of our suppliers improve their performance. We have been, and will continue to be, strong advocates for MEP support at the federal and state level.”