Shop Management Articles

Shop management encompasses everything from strategic planning to the nuts and bolts of statistical process control. Whether you're an executive, manager, or supervisor, you'll find articles about overcoming challenges and struggles just like yours.

Filter Content

Can industrial fans and welding mix?

March 17, 2016

By:

How do large industrial fans affect shielding gas coverage in welding environments? The truth is it is tricky but not impossible. With the right testing and support, overhead HVLS fans can work in most welding facilities, while variable-speed column fans can take care of the rest.

Continue Reading

Ready, set, interview

March 17, 2016

By:

Yuba College welding instructor and Practical Welding Today Editorial Advisory Committee member Dan Turner has been on both sides of the interview process. In this first installment of Viewpoint, Turner shares advice for job-searching welders on the art of the job interview.

Continue Reading

Financial benchmarking in metal fabrication

March 16, 2016

By:

The world is full of surveys these days, and some really don’t have much purpose. Others, however, can be extremely valuable. Industry benchmarking surveys, for instance, can be a vital tool for any company looking to improve. This includes the “Financial Ratios & Operational Benchmarking Survey” from FMA.

Continue Reading

Getting standard work instructions right for fabricating

March 16, 2016

By:

The goal of any fabricating operation is to discover the safest and most efficient method to produce quality parts. That goal can be achieved only with clear work directions for shop floor employees. Fabricators that follow some basic guidelines, or implement the right software, can make sure they are putting together work instructions that anyone can follow.

Continue Reading

Optimizing your welding process with ventilation, tables

March 14, 2016

By:

Is there room for improvement in your welding operation? Choosing the right ventilation system along with flexible worktables can go a long way toward optimizing your welding process.

Continue Reading

The case for kaizen activities

March 2, 2016

By:

Continuous improvement activities don't always have to involve classroom time dedicated to training and excessive resources. They can be brief, direct, and have immediate impacts. That's where kaizen activities come in.

Continue Reading

Fabricating food trucks

March 1, 2016

By:

A 70-year-old metal fabricating business in Buffalo, N. Y., came under new ownership in 2012 and in the ensuing years, the shop worked hard to get any business it could to build cash flow and a positive reputation. Two years later, the shop emerged with a maker of food trucks and custom hot and cold food stations for grocery stores. The fabricating business hasn't been the same since.

Continue Reading

Improving metal forming performance

February 18, 2016

By:

What does your stamping operation do to improve metal forming efficiency? The key is to learn more about the metal, conduct practice runs in the virtual world, and pass along knowledge to co-workers.

Continue Reading

Shop technology and 3-D CAD: Using 3-D geometry to create interactive documents

February 15, 2016

By:

Columnist Gerald Davis reviews the similarities between drafting and illustrating. The use of dedicated software is considered.

Continue Reading

How to crunch chronic defects with variables search

February 11, 2016

By:

Variables search is not a well-known quality tool, but it can be helpful in rooting out factors that produce scrap and rework at metal fabricating facilities. All that’s needed to identify the sources of quality problems is a dedicated group and a disciplined approach to the investigation process.

Continue Reading

Strength in numbers: How the Industrial Internet of Things applies to fabricators

February 11, 2016

By:

Just what is the Industrial Internet of Things, and what could it possibly mean to fabricators? Here’s how it can improve a welding operation.

Continue Reading

Process audits in manufacturing: Do as the accountants do

February 10, 2016

By:

The fab shop is ripe territory for unexpected (and usually bad) things to occur. The best operations prevent them by doing as the accountants do. They audit regularly.

Continue Reading

Part-marking on the move

February 10, 2016

By:

A new battery-operated, hand-held marking unit has capabilities and software that are often found only on much larger units.

Continue Reading

Managing metal fabrication through the generations

February 10, 2016

By:

Although the study of generations is an inexact social science, it may help company leaders empathize, minimize conflict, and get everyone on the same page.

Continue Reading

Keeping pace with fabricating technology

February 10, 2016

By:

Quality is a given, but delivery time is not. Sjoberg Tool & Manufacturing Corp., Hartland, WIs., knows that, so it has relied on the latest machine tools over the last 40 years to squeeze time out of the production process. It must be working because customers keep coming back—with ever-increasing demands.

Continue Reading