Manufacturing is pretty special in that it’s a very distinct community. While there’s surely competition in many cases, when it comes to creating a STEM-friendly workforce and putting America on top in manufacturing prowess, the industry is united.
On a more granular level, there are also many outstanding organizations that can be good resources for manufacturers, students interested in STEM, or teachers working to guide their classes towards the many possibilities that manufacturing has to offer. Each has their own benefits. Here are a few organizations and associations in the manufacturing industry that are worth joining:
National Association of Manufacturers: Few groups work harder and more publicly to raise awareness than NAM. Founded in Cincinnati in 1895, while the United States was in a deep recession, NAM was responsible for the call to create the U.S. Department of Commerce and even helped to launch the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. On January 15, 2011, Jay Timmons became president and CEO of the NAM. “Jay has a keen understanding of manufacturing, and he has relationships on both sides of the aisle in Washington. Jay has helped lead the NAM during good economic times and has remained unflappable during the most difficult economic times manufacturers have ever faced,” stated NAM Chairman Michael Campbell.
Today, the group still works actively to advocate for manufacturing-friendly policies in the government. If you join, you’ll have access to one-of-a-kind resources in the form of publications, monthly newsletters, weekly email updates, and a Shopfloor blog that will keep you informed about the industry. There’s some nitty-gritty benefits too, like discounts on FedEx or UPS shipping just for NAM members.
International Metal Fabricators and Manufacturers Association: As you might guess, this group is specifically for those who work in the metal fabrication industry. They serve members involved in any process that includes stamping, welding, bending, cutting, drawing, fastening, finishing, leveling, punching, slitting, spinning, and more.
Founded in 1970, the group aims to bring metal fabricators and equipment manufacturers together through technology councils, educational programs, networking events, and more. Being a part of the association enables your company to receive industry awards, safety awards, shipping services, other resources designed to help your business grow.
Association for Manufacturing Excellence: AME, a not-for-profit association, represents 4,000 managers from senior executives to middle managers who wish to improve their company’s performance. This association says that “AME’s power is in the mentoring relationships that take place among our members. We are the only organization that provides company leaders with educational opportunities to learn leading-edge topics from leaders and fellow practitioners by attending events and through networking.”
You can see the other various membership benefits here, but the fact remains that mentoring in manufacturing is crucial to success. If you don’t already have solid manufacturing mentorship relationships in place, AME could be a wonderful opportunity for you.
Are there any organizations we missed? If so, leave a comment in the section below—we’d love to hear about them!