In a regular Friday spot, this is the Reading Room, a weekly roundup of what we’ve been reading, watching and listening to. You can see these updates even more regularly if you follow me on LinkedIn or Twitter.
Wow, the world seems to be spinning faster than ever and the news is increasingly alarming! As COVID-19 find its way into every corner of the world and every corner of our lives, it’s hard to find any good news, but I was determined and found some amazing examples of how technology and manufacturing is really stepping up to the challenge.
Before we get into that, here’s a couple of initiatives that might help people to get some information and insight into what’s happening.
- Following three seasons of The Eric Miscoll Show, affectionately known as “The EMS”, at events like SMTAi, Productronica and APEX, EMSNOW has decided to take the show online. Eric will be chairing these Virtual EMS events from his home in Texas, while as co-host I’ll be getting up early in Melbourne, Australia. The first online show will be on April 1st at 10am Central US Time and 5pm Central European Time. Eric’s first two guru guests are Dieter Weiss of In4ma, Europe’s leading EMS expert, and Ron Keith of Supply Chain Resources Group, a global supply chain consultant with hard-earned experience and expertise. I’d register now if I was you.
- I am now writing this column as I come off co-hosting the Supply Chain Bunker with Fictiv CEO and fellow Forbes contributor, Dave Evans. This weekly gathering of supply chain professionals happens every Thursday at 3:30pm pacific. You can register here. Today’s guest Howell Wang of Insight Solutions and Supply Chain Consultant, John Jacobson, provided a lot of valuable advice today. Dave and I are writing a weekly blog from the Bunker, the first of which appeared on EMSNOW on Tuesday. The recording of this week’s episode already online.
The technology and manufacturing industry has a real opportunity to step up right now and there are many great examples and some solid advice:
- In this piece, “What Technology And Manufacturing Can Do To Help Against COVID-19” in Forbes, Dave Evans explains, “it’s time to step up! In a time of crisis, we need to look to our leaders to step up and lead. Whether that’s a politician leading his/her state, a CEO leading an organization, or perhaps the entire tech and manufacturing sector showing its agility to adapt, we rely on leaders in times like these.”
- For a great example, read this piece in the Evening Standard (UK), “Dyson designs new ventilator ‘CoVent’ in 10 days after Government orders 10,000 to help tackle coronavirus pandemic”
- From Industry Week we see the global manufacturing community come together as “China’s Factories Work 24/7 to Build Ventilators for Milan, New York”. After meeting the country’s needs two weeks ago, its factory lines have been working flat out on orders from overseas for its lifesaving ventilators. With three shifts and even research and development staff on the production line, the company’s machines have been going non-stop.
- Also in Industry Week, “Ford to Partner with 3M, GE Healthcare to Produce Health Equipment for Outbreak”, while fellow U.S. automakers General Motors and Tesla have also sworn to contribute to equipment sourcing.
- In WIRED, the heart-warming story, that after a hospital put out a call for protective gear, three friends developed a product in a few days. Their design is now being manufactured by Ford. Read, “Engineers Made a DIY Face Shield. Now It’s Helping Doctors”
- As the issue works its way around the world, we read in Supply Chain Dive that “India, Bangladesh close factories amid coronavirus lockdown”. Foxconn, an Apple supplier, said it would stop production in India until April 14 in compliance with government orders, according to Reuters. MRF and Maxxis, two automotive suppliers, also suspended operations, according to The Economic Times.
- Forbes Staff Writer, Amy Feldman goes “Inside A Silicon Valley Unicorn’s Urgent Dash To 3D-Print Face Shields And Test Swabs To Battle COVID-19”. Four days ago, Joe DeSimone, cofounder of 3D printing unicorn Carbon, and Ellen Kullman, started thinking seriously about how the company’s technology might help meet the urgent needs for medical supplies during the coronavirus pandemic. With shortages on everything from ventilators to face masks making the news, they debated which gaps their 3D-printing technology might be able to fill, and settled on two areas: personal protective equipment and test swabs.
- For an excellent overall update and some commentary check out my friend and colleague and Eric Miscoll Show guest, Ron Keith’s weekly posts on LinkedIn. In his latest, and twelfth, Coronavirus Update he talks about factory closure in the US and the redeployment of resources.
For trade shows we’re in extremely uncertain times:
- Meanwhile this morning a message in my inbox read “With heavy hearts, we have to inform you that HANNOVER MESSE will not take place in 2020”. This highlights the impact we can expect from event cancellations within the industry and more broadly. This week I published an article of Forbes, entitled “How to Shift Your Marketing Mix When Events Get Canceled”
- This underlines the need for event staples like The Eric Miscoll Show and the SCOOPstudio to find a new virtual model that adds the same or even more value to marketers as they look to shift their priorities.
Read more, watch more, hear more, know more – that’s the SCOOP!