Over 40 manufacturing professionals from across North America had the unique opportunity to experience behind-the-scenes tours of some of the most innovative, efficient, and productive manufacturing facilities in the world during this year’s European Benchmarking Technology Tour, hosted by Stiles Machinery on October 7–14, 2017. The forward-thinking solutions experienced throughout the weeklong event allowed participants to benchmark their own operations against other global leaders, giving them a competitive advantage in the marketplace and equipping them with valuable knowledge and tools that will directly affect the overall success of their companies for years to come.
With tour stops at nine industry-leading plants throughout Germany and the Netherlands, guests of Stiles’ annual Benchmarking Technology Tour received exclusive insights into the latest advancements in panel processing, batch-size one production strategies, new cutting-edge manufacturing technologies and industry 4.0 innovations for high-end store fixture, component, and kitchen cabinet manufacturers. This exposure gave attendees the opportunity to observe how global trendsetters are optimizing their operations and process flows by utilizing best practices, innovative software and advanced technology.
Several notable tour destinations included Nobilia, the world’s largest kitchen manufacturer located in the heart of Germany. At Nobilia, guests were able to benchmark their own practices against one of the leading process-driven manufacturers in the world. Sedus Systems in Geseke, Germany was another popular tour destination. As one of the most highly automated woodworking manufacturers in the world, Sedus gave attendees a window into industry 4.0 and the future of manufacturing innovation.
Other tour highlights included Poggenpohl in Herford, Germany, with over 120 years of experience in high-end kitchen manufacturing. At Poggenpohl, attendees observed the latest trends in kitchen materials, colors, textures, and finishes. While in Herford, guests also visited Febrü where they experienced innovative concepts in office furniture manufacturing and unique strategies for obtaining the highest production value from a wide variety of products. HOMAG Bohrsysteme in Herzebrock, Germany, was another favorite for tour attendees where they experienced the latest in CNC machining technology.