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Manufacturer Survey reveals recession survival strategies.

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September 4, 2009 - Manufacturers detail recession survival strategies in a survey conducted in late July by sponsors of the FABTECH® International and AWS Welding Show. Of 1,046 past/prospective registrants, 69% of manufacturers indicated they reduced their workforce, 66% delayed capital expenditures, 48% negotiated with suppliers for better deals, and 37% cut promotional activities to survive the economic downturn. With the economy improving, however, those surveyed plan to reverse downsizing.

Manufacturers Detail Recession Survival Strategies in New Survey


(Archive News Story - Products mentioned in this Archive News Story may or may not be available from the manufacturer.)

SME
1 SME Dr., P.O. Box 930
Dearborn, MI, 48121
USA





Press release date: September 3, 2009

Opportunities for Manufacturers Abound As Economy Improves

DEARBORN, Mich., September 3, 2009 - Manufacturers detail their recession survival strategies in a new survey conducted by the sponsors of the upcoming FABTECH® International & AWS Welding Show, including METALFORM, in Chicago.

To survive what many view as the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, 69 percent of manufacturers indicated they reduced their workforce, followed by delaying capital expenditures (66 percent), negotiating with suppliers for better deals (48 percent) and cutting promotional activities (37 percent.) The survey of 1,046 past or prospective registrants of the FABTECH event was conducted in late July.

However, with signs that the economy is currently improving, those surveyed plan to reverse downsizing - nearly one-third of those surveyed said they expect to add to their workforce in the next 12 months. Manufacturers reported an increase in demand in product as the leading factor that would prompt an increase to the workforce (78 percent) followed by the opportunity to upgrade workforce (7 percent) and the need for new skill sets (6 percent).

"As manufacturers look for signs of improvement in their business, it's vital that they prepare for the economic recovery," said Mark Hoper, FATECH show manager. "History shows that it's the period immediately following a recession that offers the most opportunity for businesses. The FABTECH International & AWS Welding Show, including METALFORM, is timed to provide manufacturers with solutions and strategies to take advantage of the economic turnaround and operate a more efficient and competitive business."

Free educational sessions focusing on the economy include:

A keynote panel discussion led by Jeff Knauf, president of Medalist Laserfab, Inc., titled, "Best Practices for Thriving in Tough Times," on business strategies for surviving and thriving during an uncertain economy. Topics include workforce development, diversifying product lines and operations, obtaining financing/credit, and current tax incentives.

A Solutions Showcase session on "Maintaining Sales Focus in a Down Economy" that offers strategies to better prepare businesses for the economic turnaround including creating a recession-proof sales strategy, growing current accounts and gaining new customers in tough times.

A Solutions Showcase session titled, "Smart Strategies for Preserving Stakeholder Relationships," that highlights the importance of frequent, quality communications with stakeholders.

Taking place November 15-18, FABTECH is expected to draw some 35,000 attendees and 1,000 exhibitors to Chicago's McCormick Place. It is the largest tradeshow in North America dedicated to showcasing a full spectrum of metal forming, fabricating, stamping, tube and pipe, and welding equipment and technology,

To register for the 2009 FABTECH International & AWS Welding Show, including METALFORM, call 800.733.4763 or 313.425.3000, ext. 4500 (outside the U.S. and Canada), or online at www.fabtechexpo.com.

Cosponsored by the American Welding Society (AWS), Fabricators & Manufacturers Association Int'l (FMA), Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME), and Precision Metalforming Association (PMA), the event is the ultimate solutions showcase. Thousands of buyers and sellers from across the globe will gather at the exhibition to exchange products and services, network with peers, discover new products and vendors, and educate the industry on the latest technologies. The 2009 show also will include the first official METALFORM Pavilion exhibition that will display innovations in stamping technology.

About FMA The Fabricators & Manufacturers Association, Intl. (FMA), is a professional organization with more than 2,300 members working together to improve the metal forming and fabricating industry. FMA brings metal fabricators and fabricating equipment manufacturers together through technology councils, educational programs, and networking events, while providing the resources needed by companies to improve operations. FMA's technology affiliate, the Tube & Pipe Association, Intl (TPA), focuses on the unique needs of companies engaged in tube and pipe producing and fabricating. Visit www.fmanet.org for more information.

About AWS The American Welding Society (AWS) was founded in 1919 as a multifaceted, nonprofit organization with a mission to advance the science, technology and application of welding and allied joining and cutting processes, including brazing, soldering, and thermal spraying. Headquartered in Miami, Florida and led by a volunteer organization of officers and directors, AWS serves more than 50,000 members worldwide and is composed of 22 Districts with 250 sections and student chapters. For more information, visit www.aws.org.

About SME The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) is the premier source for manufacturing knowledge, education and networking. Through its many programs, events and activities, SME connects manufacturing practitioners to each other, to the latest technology and the most up-to-date processes spanning all manufacturing industries and disciplines, plus the key areas of aerospace and defense, medical device, motor vehicles, including motorsports, and oil and gas. A 501(c)3 organization, SME has members in more than 70 countries and is supported by a network of technical communities and chapters worldwide.

About PMA The Precision Metalforming Association is the full-service trade association representing the $91-billion metalforming industry of North America. Its 1100 member companies include metal stampers, fabricators, spinners, slide formers and roll formers as well as suppliers of equipment, materials and services to the industry. Through advocacy, networking, statistics, the Educational Foundation, METALFORM tradeshows and MetalForming magazine, PMA helps lead innovative member companies toward superior competitiveness and profitability. Visit www.pma.org.
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