Building Better Vehicles Via Functional Build

The functional build method says that you aren’t going to stamp perfect body panels, so you might as well accept the fact and deal with it. And dealing with it can result in reduced costs, faster time to market, and remarkable fit and finish. Sounds outlandish, but they’ve been using the method at Japanese auto companies for years, and who is lower cost, faster and more lauded for quality?

What You Need To Know About RFID

RFID—radio frequency identification—technology can help manufacturers keep better track of vehicles-in-becoming (i.e., parts, subassemblies, etc.) and even after the sale. Here’s how.

Culture & the Improvement of the Design Process

It isn’t just about the tools of the trade that are found in various places on the pages of this magazine. It is also about how those tools are deployed. In the area of rapid prototyping—the world of product simulation—an MIT researcher has some interesting thoughts about the implications of models for successful companies.

Standardized Lean

Although there are countless books and even more consultants out there with their own spin on what "Lean" means, SAE International, working with some of the most knowledgeable people in the industry, have developed a standard that provides not only a definition of lean, but tools that can help companies profitably transform their operations for competitve advantage—or survival.

Get in the Game

Can playing a board game make your facility more productive? (Hint: Honda thinks the answer is affirmative)



What kind of people do you like to associate with: those who are distant and dour or those who are accessible and engaging?


It ain't easy in the business world to be, well, real. But it can be rewarding.

Increasing Personal Productivity

Simple conversation can overcome many of the barriers that inevitably exist in the manager-employee relationship because there is something very democratic about exchanging views face-to-face.That's why managers who enjoy a dialog relationship with their subordinates tend to be more successful than those who don't.There are several reasons for this.

The Arrogance of Technology

I was headed from Chicago back to Detroit on I-94, piloting a new Mercedes-Benz CLK 430 Cabriolet through the night when the digital dashboard display went out.