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34 The PCB Magazine • November 2015 above the standard job function and opera- tional training all employees receive. Statistical theory and methods, process capability, and control chart maintenance, interpretation, and reaction are key topics to be covered in depth. Let Data Drive your Decisions With the abundance of data available to business managers, it is important to filter out the data that does not have a major impact on the business and focus on what does. Statistical techniques are an excellent tool to identify how your processes are really operating, and can be implemented to provide real-time feedback to base your day-to-day decisions on. PCB a good start, as this indicates a process that is capable of consistently meeting customer re- quirements. As with most things, process ca- pability is a continuous improvement journey and future goals should be to move up to the next Cpk milestones of 1.66, 2.0 and beyond. The ongoing quest for improvement is a perfect opportunity for collaboration between your in- house subject matter experts (SMEs) and those of your key suppliers. A note on operator-Level Involvement There is a tendency for companies to relegate the SPC program to a process-engineer or other staff function, which may not always be real- time. While this can be moderately effective, the greatest benefit would be achieved through active participation of the personnel actually running the process and producing product. A control chart's true function is to provide real- time feedback to control and improve process- es. The program will fail if the data displayed on the charts do not help front-line operators make better process decisions to actually moni- tor, adjust and control their processes. Whatever the level of participation, SPC requires specialized formal training over-and- DATA AnALyTICS THroUGH STATISTICAL TeCHnIQUeS FeATure Steve Williams is the president of the right approach consulting llc and the former strategic sourcing manager for Plexus corp. he is the author of four books, including Quality 101 Handbook and Survival Is Not Mandatory: 10 Things Every CEO Should Know about Lean. to read past columns, or to contact Williams, click here. Interim CEO Jeff McCreary on Changes at Isola In a recent interview with I-connect007, Isola's interim President and ceo Jeff mccreary discussed the impetus for the recent person- nel reduction and plant closing that took place, mainly in the u.S. With a realignment towards the asian market and im- proved plant utilization in the u.S., Isola expects to become more internationally competi- tive and improve revenue. mccreary explained that, with long-time president ray Sharpe stepping down fol- lowed by the reductions, many are probably wonder- ing about the company's stability. he stated that the company has remained profitable but has suffered revenue-wise in the past few years, due in part to a general market slump in asia. By improving on their manufacturing utilization rate in the u.S. (savings in the millions) along with more focus on the asian market, mccreary sees the company as highly competitive going forward. mccreary also shared his bullish view on the electronics industry in gen - eral and on what the industry may expect from Isola going forward. In addition, he ex- plained what the company is looking for in a new ceo, which should be announced in the next few months. to read the entire inter- view click here.

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