Monday, October 17, 2016

What Top CNC Machining Shops Do Differently

Some CNC machining shops way outperform others. Only common sense tells you that.

But what’s hard to figure out is why. If you knew that, then you could start to modify your CNC machine shop so you become one of the leaders. And it might even inspire  your thinking to the point where you find ways to innovate beyond your competitors.

So what do top CNC machining shops do that the rest of the pack doesn’t?

These things:

Top Shops Almost Always Use 5-Axis Machining

According to the 2016 Top Shops Executive Summary, top shops are much more likely to use this technology than others. It doesn’t matter whether this is 3+2 positioning or full contouring. It’s simply the easiest, most efficient way to create complex parts with the least number of touches.

And, most top shops use more advanced machining technology and techniques like high-speed machining and hard turning.

Only Doing Projects and Taking on Strategy That Fits Within Your Business’s Purpose

What’s the defined purpose of your CNC machine shop? If you’re like most, you probably don’t have one. So, maybe it’s time to define one.

When you define your purpose, that tells you exactly which projects you take on and why. That means you get more efficient at creating high value for your customers.

And as you might guess, that means higher profits and long streams of customers for you. So, if a certain action or customer doesn’t advance your business’s purpose, strongly consider not doing it.

If you want to be really good at dozens of things, then you’ll have to build additional shops and teams who can specialize in those.

Top Shops are Independent Shops, Not Small Components of Large Companies

While larger companies certainly are capable of success, the best of the best most often are independent shops. It may be because the independents are able to customize their tools and processes to meet niche needs much more effectively than the big guys. In general, they also focus on repeating jobs.

This data, by the way, also comes from MMSOnline’s annual Top Shops survey. Top shops make an average of 2,097 different parts per year, compared to an amazing 5,874 for the average shop.

There’s much more that the top CNC shops do that average companies don’t. Make sure you read the Top Shops survey to learn how you can stand out from the competition. 

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