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Six Steps Manufacturers Can Take to Prepare for the Effects of a Possible ‘Coronavirus Downturn’

February 28, 2020

In an IndustryWeek article, Nada Sanders, Ph.D. — an expert in forecasting, analytics, global supply chain intelligence and sustainability — offers six steps that businesses, large and small, can take to develop an immediate response to threats posed by the coronavirus outbreak and to prepare for a possible larger-scale disruption. 2/27/2020

Sen. Matt Huffman to Headline OMA’s March 4 Government Affairs Committee

February 28, 2020

Senate Majority Floor Leader Matt Huffman (R-Lima) will keynote the OMA Government Affairs Committee on Wednesday, March 4, in Columbus. Sen. Huffman has been at the heart of the controversial school vouchers debate and will respond to members’ questions. Also invited to address the committee is political operative Jeff Longstreth, who will share his insights into this year’s Ohio House races.

It’s not too late for members to register to attend either in person or via phone. The meeting will held from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., and includes lunch. 2/27/2020

Distracted Driving Legislation Offered With Bipartisan Support

February 28, 2020

Bipartisan legislation was recently introduced to revise Ohio’s motor vehicle laws in an effort to reduce traffic accidents caused by drivers distracted by smartphones and other electronic devices. Sponsored by Sens. Stephanie Kunze (R-Hilliard) and Sean O’Brien (D-Bazetta), Senate Bill 285 — the “Hands-Free Ohio” plan — would significantly increase penalties for distracted drivers. Gov. Mike DeWine announced his support of the bill at a press conference earlier this month.

The bill will be discussed at next week’s OMA Government Affairs Committee meeting. 2/27/2020

The Fourth Industrial Revolution: At the Intersection of Readiness and Responsibility

February 28, 2020

From Deloitte Global’s recent survey of more than 2,000 C-suite executives: “Companies are beginning to understand the massive impact of Industry 4.0 and the role of technology in fundamentally transforming business models and processes.” Read the report. 2/27/2020

Ohio Leads the Way in Use of Self-Driving Shuttle

February 28, 2020

It’s encouraging to see Ohio play a key role in developing autonomous vehicle technology. See this report on a pilot project in Columbus called Linden LEAP — the country’s first public self-driving shuttle in a residential area. 2/27/2020

Bill Would Impose 18% Rate on Late Payments for Construction Projects

February 28, 2020

Among the bills on the OMA’s radar this session is House Bill 380, legislation that would require owners of private construction projects (including manufacturers who are building, improving or maintaining facilities in Ohio) to pay contractors within 30 days — or face a whopping 18% interest rate.

The OMA’s legal counsel, Bricker & Eckler LLP, has published this memo to break down the bill’s flawed approach, noting that HB 380 “fails to take into account the standard payment processes that currently exist under virtually every industry standard construction contract.”

Concerned members are invited to comment and join the discussion at the March 4 OMA Government Affairs Committee meeting. 2/26/2020

Looking for Help With Exporting?

February 28, 2020

As Ohio manufacturers look for new export opportunities, the U.S. Commercial Service (CS) — part of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration — wants OMA members to know it offers companies a full range of expertise in international trade.

With experts in more than 80 countries, CS provides free, personalized counseling at every step of your export journey — including in the areas of strategy and planning, financing and logistics, market entry and expansion, advocacy and dispute resolutions, and even eCommerce counseling. For more information, email Darren Srebnick or call (614) 273-5157. 2/25/2020

Japan’s Consul General Tsutomu Nakagawa Visits OMA

February 21, 2020

This week, Consul General Tsutomu Nakagawa from the Detroit office of the Consulate General of Japan dropped by the OMA. Among the issues discussed with OMA President Eric Burkland were Ohio’s manufacturing economy, workforce development, automation and robotics, and free trade.

Japan’s businesses are among Ohio’s leading foreign investors. With 484 Japanese-owned facilities, the Buckeye State has nearly 76,000 jobs as a direct result of Japanese investment. 2/20/2020

Join DSA Director Mihalik to Learn About Ohio-Japan Partnership

February 21, 2020

Ohio Development Services Agency (DSA) Director Lydia Mihalik has announced that early next month, her agency will host representatives from Japan’s Small and Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation (SME SUPPORT JAPAN). The organization operates within Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

Director Mihalik has invited OMA members to attend and learn how DSA’s relationship with SME SUPPORT JAPAN can benefit Ohio businesses. The meeting will take place Wednesday, March 4, from 3 to 4:30 p.m. in conference rooms South B and C on the 31st floor of the Vern Riffe Center, 77 S. High St., Columbus. For more information, email DSA. 2/18/2020

Survey: Ohio Manufacturers Optimistic About 2020

February 21, 2020

Ohio manufacturers are optimistic about their 2020 growth prospects, with more than 70% expecting higher revenue this year. That’s the finding from a new statewide survey of 673 Ohio manufacturers in more than 25 subsectors of the industry. Conducted by Northeast Ohio’s MAGNET and the Ohio Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), the survey also found:

  • Retention and development of current employees — along with recruitment of new ones — is the top priority of Ohio manufacturers. In Northeast Ohio alone, there are roughly 8,000 open manufacturing jobs today.
  • Nearly 60% of Ohio manufacturers said the skilled worker shortage was the top factor hindering their growth, followed by rising health care costs (30%), retirement of current workers (26%), and the rising cost of raw materials (25%).
  • Ohio manufacturers are falling behind on Industry 4.0 adoption, particularly small- and medium-sized firms.

Last week, MAGNET president and CEO Ethan Karp joined a panel of manufacturing executives to discuss the survey results at a City Club of Cleveland forum. Next month, on March 10, FASTLANE — West Central Ohio’s MEP — will host an event to review the survey’s findings. 2/17/2020