Top Plant

The challenges to deliver manufacturing excellence every day have never been greater. There’s the challenge of finding skilled workers, the challenges of managing energy consumption, the challenges of a competitive global marketplace where the same product you make can also be made anywhere in the world.


The challenges to deliver manufacturing excellence every day have never been greater. There’s the challenge of finding skilled workers, the challenges of managing energy consumption, the challenges of a competitive global marketplace where the same product you make can also be made anywhere in the world.

Meeting those challenges each day takes a plan %%MDASSML%% one that is completely embraced by the workers, completely supported by management, relentless executed and enthusiastically celebrated.

Top Plant winners accept their award
The 2007 PLANT ENGINEERING Top Plant winners didn’t just succeed in building successful manufacturing operations. They planned to succeed all along.

The 2007 winners %%MDASSML%% The Global Engine Manufacturing Alliance , SEW Eurodrive and Spirax Sarco %%MDASSML%% could not be more diverse in the products they produce. GEMA is a partnership between three major auto manufacturers that combine automation and skill to deliver automobile engines for the present and the future. SEW Eurodrive’s Lyman, SC plant delivers gear reduction parts for its gear motors and drives assemblies. Spirax Sarco develops steam control solutions for industrial and commercial customers.

Yet they all have so much in common. They work at reducing costs throughout the manufacturing process, directly involving workers in finding and executing these cost-reduction plans. They use Lean as a strategy and they are lean as an organization.

They are also all sustainable manufacturers. It goes so far past just being “green” to seeing sustainability as a business imperative. They prove it is possible to be both profit-centric and environmentally responsive.

And while automation is also a key strategy to manufacturing success, each plant manager talks about his people first. The human element is crucial to their success. More than any other factor, it is the human commitment that leads to manufacturing excellence.

We will celebrate that commitment to the plan and the people April 1 in Chicago at the 2008 PLANT ENGINEERING Manufacturing Summit when these outstanding manufacturing companies receive their 2007 Top Plant award.

View the photo galleries of the Top Plants .

The Top Plant program honors outstanding manufacturing facilities in North America. View the 2015 Top Plant.
The Product of the Year program recognizes products newly released in the manufacturing industries.
Each year, a panel of Control Engineering and Plant Engineering editors and industry expert judges select the System Integrator of the Year Award winners in three categories.
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A new approach to the Skills Gap; Community colleges may hold the key for manufacturing; 2017 Engineering Leaders Under 40
Control room technology innovation; Practical approaches to corrosion protection; Pipeline regulator revises quality programs
The cloud, mobility, and remote operations; SCADA and contextual mobility; Custom UPS empowering a secure pipeline
Infrastructure for natural gas expansion; Artificial lift methods; Disruptive technology and fugitive gas emissions
Power system design for high-performance buildings; mitigating arc flash hazards
VFDs improving motion control applications; Powering automation and IIoT wirelessly; Connecting the dots
Natural gas engines; New applications for fuel cells; Large engines become more efficient; Extending boiler life

Annual Salary Survey

Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

Read more: 2015 Salary Survey

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This digital report will explore several aspects of how IIoT will transform manufacturing in the coming years.
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