Volume 47, Issue 8 - October 2008

the Future

Production Series for Manufacturers
A New Approach to Education
by Kelly A. Schroeder,

This coming March, a new approach to delivering information to millwork manufacturers will be launched in Lake Las Vegas. The Moulding & Millwork Producers Association (MMPA) has outlined a Production Series for Millwork Manufacturers—a program which targets educating manufacturers on all aspects of operations in a series of short bursts of educational sessions—to be presented during its March Winter Business Meeting. With the blending of PVC, Wood and MDF manufacturers into the organization, the MMPA recognized a new direction would be required to meet all of the manufacturers’ educational needs.

The Production Series for Millwork Manufacturers gives the MMPA the opportunity to tap into a range of expertise in the supplier field to educate millwork manufacturers on topics they have requested. The MMPA developed a Wish List approach to education during 2008 while cultivating its new Poly Blends Group made up of PVC, polystyrene, polyurethane, polypropylene, polyethylene and poly cellulose mixed manufacturers.

The Productions Series initial approach was to take a millwork manufacturer through the issues affecting its operations beginning with procurement of raw material, receipt of the material, efficient utilization of the material, and storing and shipping the end product. During discussions as to how to best disseminate the information, the MMPA acknowledged other areas of operations would need to be addressed in order to produce a complete informational package for its members. Hence, the MMPA added layers to the Production Series to include Human Resources, Cost Analysis and Management, Return on Investment, Byproducts, Green Issues, Energy Analysis, Customer Relations and more.

Topics and speakers will not be presented in a linear fashion from raw material procurement forward to end product shipment. Instead, sessions will be selected from variousareas of the Production Series for each MMPA business meeting. Issues affecting operations do not rise up at convenient times or in the order of how a manufacturer pushes its raw material through its plant.

Save the Date
The association will deliver the Production Series for Millwork Manufacturers over two days during the Winter Business Meeting on March 19 - 20, 2009. Sessions will be held at the MonteLago Village Resort on Lake Las Vegas, located thirty minutes from the Strip. Manufacturers of PVC, MDF and wood moulding and millwork are invited to attend. Detailed information regarding the MMPA’s Winter Business Meeting may be found on the association’s website at www.wmmpa.com by clicking on the News & Events, Events Calendar page. Registration information will be available in December; however, the discounted one-bedroom condo with full kitchen rate is available to be reserved at this time. The discounted group code is on the website and must be given at time of reservation. Attendees with children will be happy to know the one-bedroom condo sleeps four; a sleeper sofa will accommodate two persons in the living room area.

Interaction among the varied manufacturers gathered at one of these events is interesting to say the least. MDF, wood and Poly Blends are eager to talk among themselves regarding the millwork market and the challenges they face as manufacturers. Curiosity regarding opposing products leads to networking which, in turn, leads to information sharing a manufacturer may ultimately use to assist in strategic planning or operations analysis. I encourage non-members desiring to attend to contact me to obtain a better feel for what to expect during the meeting. As an example, the “buddy pairings” is one activity one should not miss as the Winter Meeting kicks off. You may reach me in the MMPA office at 530/661-9591. Get yourself to a MMPA meeting, we want to talk to you!

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