The pending merger between AMT—the Association For Manufacturing Technology and the American Machine Tool Distributors Association (AMTDA) is a combination energized by the strong rebound of U.S. manufacturing. The members of both organizations provide industry with manufacturing technologies that enable globally competitive products to be made in North America.
In December, leaders from both organizations met in Virginia to fine-tune the vision for the “new AMT.” As a member of both associations and as a past AMTDA chairman, I was invited to participate. I am pleased to report on the progress being made.
Both organizations are dedicated to promoting the application of manufacturing technology. The activities of AMTDA members are symbiotic and compatible with the interests of AMT member companies. Therefore, the leaders of both organizations quickly reached a consensus regarding the promise of what this merger might accomplish.
Paramount is the desire to influence a favorable environment for manufacturing in the United States. The combined trade association will have twice the member companies to advocate for a national manufacturing policy, which would sustain and expand the current surge in manufacturing.
In addition to raising a voice of leadership and advocacy, the new organization aspires to create programs that support the users of manufacturing technology. For example, AMT has invested in MTConnect, an open standard that fosters improved shopfloor communication to increase manufacturing productivity. Other targets include developing the skills desperately required by manufacturers and supporting initiatives to bring manufacturing back to our shores.
The goal of the new AMT is to make a difference in the success of member companies. A fundamental impetus behind the merger was to integrate programs from each association and share them among all members. An example would be to spread AMTDA-developed Leadership Forums among AMT members and to give former AMTDA members access to AMT-created business development consultation. The point is: All members receive a better value proposition.
Both parties have an interest in developing a rational approach to trade shows. Likewise, both parties reinforced the ambition for IMTS to be the world’s premier manufacturing technology event. In addition, the combined associations will strive to create customer-friendly and exhibitor-considerate trade shows.
Suffice to say that the vision for the consolidated AMT received enthusiastic endorsements from all member leaders and association staff gathered in Tyson, Virginia. In the years ahead, all members will surely be proud and energized by what their new association does to support adoption of the best manufacturing technologies throughout North America and the rest of the world.