MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota chamber of commerce held its 2017 Minnesota Manufacturers’ Summit on Oct. 6 — National Manufacturing Day — in downtown Minneapolis. Jon Sillerud, vice president of operations for Uponor North America, served as a panelist with representatives from Medtronic and Multi-Tech Systems to discuss “Using Smart Manufacturing to Leverage Productivity and Profits.” The session was moderated by Eric Gibson, president of Ultra Machining Co., and attended by more than 200 people working in or supporting manufacturing throughout the state.

During the panel conversation, Sillerud commented that the Internet of Things (IoT) means efficiency, automation, and competitive benefits for Uponor’s business, and he said the return on investment in using IoT technologies is multifaceted but comes in the form of reduced operating costs, brand differentiation, and collecting accurate data. When asked where he thinks Minnesota ranks on the list of states involved in developing smart manufacturing practices, he said, “I believe our state is at or near the top of that list because of our fast-growing IoT community, tech-savvy workforce, and highly developed systems engineering expertise.”

Another session at the summit provided information on leveraging apprenticeships as a recruitment and retention tool, and the keynote was delivered by Jim Snee, president and CEO of Hormel Foods Corp., who shared insights into the company’s long-term track record of success and his outlook for continued growth.  

Publication date: 11/20/2017

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