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Page 12 of 105

IPC COMMUNITY 13 FALL 2023 Centrally located in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area, Stark Electronics/Absolute Quality Manufacturing distributes electronic components and builds custom cable assem- blies, wire harnesses, and electrical panels for a wide range of OEM customers. Reed Rolfhus, general manager, shares some thoughts on how the company has trans- formed over the years, following a vision for the future of the wire harness industry. How would your team members describe a typical day at your company? A day in the life at AQ is different for every- one. Some team members call it fast paced; others note that every day is different because of the variety of the work. Most agree that each day is fun and enjoyable. What are the daily goals and objectives that you set out for your team to achieve? Our team's daily goal is to see continuous improvement in manufacturing efficiency throughout the organization. When the team members see improvement in the manufac- turing process, they are highly motivated to find the next way to improve. The benefits of improvement are tangible. For example, a 1% improvement in efficiency of manufacturing each day yields eight times the efficiency over the course of one year. What is the biggest challenge the wire harness industry is facing today? From availability to the cost of the materials we use, the supply chain has been our largest challenge in the past few years. Many factors contribute to the supply chain instability, and we could write a senior thesis on it. We do expect supply chain issues to continue.

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