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In September 2011, Modern Machine Shop launched the Top Shops LinkedIn Group. This exclusive group is geared toward decision-makers in North American machining facilities, including shop owners, managers, engineers, programmers and other senior personnel. We’ve limited the group to only these people (as well our magazine’s editors, of course) because we believe this exclusivity is part of what makes this group different and helpful.
The group now has nearly 2,000 members sharing ideas, offering opinions and posing questions. Some of the threads have spurred multiple comments and interesting exchanges. Here are a few that received a healthy number of responses:
• Cell Phone Policy—Does your shop have a policy about personal cell phone use? Is cell phone use among shopfloor employees an issue you’ve had to face?
• Recruiting Talent—In looking for new talent, we’ve had limited success when contacting the few local tech schools that still have precision machining programs. Where are you currently looking to find good, trainable people for your shop?
• Carbide End Mill Issue—We have not been successful holding 1-inch-diameter carbide end mills in TG or ER collets without having them pull out of the holder. Solid holders with a screw require a flat and will work. Shrink fit should work fine but we have not tried that yet. What is your shop’s current solution?
• Publishing Production Schedules—How are smallish shops publishing production schedules to the shop floor? We are not utilizing our shop management scheduling module yet; it requires a lot setup and maintenance. We’re not convinced that magnetic or wipe boards are the answer. What are you using?
Why Not Join?
Consider joining the group and adding your insight. The more of the right shop personnel we have in the group, the better the discussions will be.