The Southern Oregon High Performance Enterprise Consortium (SOHPEC) facilitated by SOREDI, has completed its first year of learning tours and engagement after coming back together one year ago in November. Focused on lean manufacturing principles and peer-to-peer mentoring, the Consortium met for its sixth learning tour at Quantum Innovations in Central Point on Thursday, November 21.
Quantum Innovations is just one of nearly a dozen current SOHPEC members who have been meeting over the last 12 months to discuss how they can prosper in Southern Oregon by offering assistance to one another through learning tours, sharing of resources, and mentoring. Quantum, established in Rogue River in 2002, now employs 36 and has doubled its workforce in just one year. Management leaders Norm Kester and Chad Hansen, note that the company takes pride in being on the forefront of research and development in thin film design while also creating disruptive technologies in the manufacture of electromechanical components and equipment in the ophthalmic industry.
Well, if you didn’t quite follow that you might want to consider participating in future SOHPEC learning tours where you are invited to take a peek at other local manufacturing systems, observe processes, offer insight, and learn how lean principles may be applied to your own manufacturing venture. “Every tour we take, we come back with a new idea or mindset that we want to implement immediately” – Norm Kester, Quantum Innovations (pictured with Scott Shumway, Cropper Medical).
Learning tours occur 6-8 times yearly from 10:30 to 1:30 pm and include lunch. SOHPEC also gathers for other meetings as necessary and anticipates adding a few training components in lean principles for incumbent workers in 2014. The next SOHPEC meeting will occur in mid-January and the group is inviting all manufacturers to attend and offer insights and ideas for their 2014 strategy.
2013 tours included:
Current SOHPEC members include: Airscape, Cary’s of Oregon, Certainteed, Cropper Medical, Diode Laser Concepts, Linx Technologies, Quantum Innovations, Recognition Specialties, Sawyer Oar and Paddles, Radio Design Group, and Terramai. Business Oregon, Rogue Community College, The Job Council, and the Oregon Manufacturer’s Extension Partnership (OMEP) are also regular attendees who attend to learn what local resources may be needed by the regional manufacturing community, to ensure local companies continue to prosper in Southern Oregon.
SOHPEC membership is simple and only requires membership in SOREDI at the sponsor level - $500/year. As a SOHPEC member, learning tours are complimentary and include lunch. Other events planned throughout the year may also be complimentary or at reduced prices. Manufacturers interested in participating may attend one learning tour free of charge. SOREDI membership allows SOHPEC to be facilitated on a yearly basis without additional overhead and also supports SOREDI’s work to provide complimentary business services to new and expanding businesses in Jackson and Josephine counties.
Contact Colleen Johnston, Senior Business Development Manager for SOREDI for information on how to engage with SOHPEC and become a SOREDI/SOHPEC member. firstname.lastname@example.org, (541) 773-8946
Thanks to our members, we at SOREDI (Southern Oregon Regional Economic Development Inc.) are able to offer business assistance, expansion, and relocation services at no charge to our clients. If you own a company and are ready to grow to the next stage, SOREDI can connect you with the resources that you need.
As a private non-profit organization serving Jackson and Josephine Counties since 1987, we represent more than 100 private companies, public utilities, and local governments. SOREDI exists to help business create and sustain good jobs and diversify the economy of Southern Oregon.