The Lean Manufacturer Podcast

Tune in to our Lean Manufacturer podcast where expert guests bring their outside view of the IIoT and discuss various aspects of manufacturing. Over the course of the series, we’ll cover some of the most important ways the IIoT can maximize manufacturing efficiency and bring value to your organization, including the need for reducing planned and unplanned downtime, enabling operational efficiency, ensuring digital continuous improvement, and so much more.<br /><br />Click play to watch episode 1.

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This week on the Lean Manufacturer

Bringing value to the shop floor - Manufacturing a natural progression for PTC

The integration of technology into manufacturing processes has become increasingly crucial, and PTC has played a significant role in this evolution. In this first episode of The Lean Manufacturer, Chris Wolff (Wolffie) speaks with Howard Heppelmann, VP of PTC´s IoT business, on how PTC’s journey from engineering excellence to manufacturing prowess reflects its commitment to enhancing industrial processes. As the industry continues to evolve, PTC remains at the forefront, driving innovation with people, partners, and data, bringing value to the shop floor.

Key questions addressed:

  • What is the digital thread in manufacturing?
  • What is the impact of IoT technologies in creating a continuous flow of data that aids in decision-making?
  • How is the utilization of digital performance management tools to automate traditional analog processes for continuous improvement?

More on Digital Manufacturing
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This episode’s speakers

Our host: Chris Wolff
Sales VP, Strategic Partnerships, PTC Americas

Our guest: Howard Heppelmann
Divisional VP and GM, ThingWorx IoT, PTC

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Lean Manufacturer episodes

Episode 1: Bringing value to the shop floor - Manufacturing a natural progression for PTC

The integration of technology into manufacturing processes has become increasingly crucial, and PTC has played a significant role in this evolution. In this first episode of The Lean Manufacturer, Chris Wolff (Wolffie) speaks with Howard Heppelmann, VP of PTC´s IoT business, on how PTC’s journey from engineering excellence to manufacturing prowess reflects its commitment to enhancing industrial processes. As the industry continues to evolve, PTC remains at the forefront, driving innovation with people, partners, and data, bringing value to the shop floor.

Key questions addressed:

  • What is the digital thread in manufacturing?
  • What is the impact of IoT technologies in creating a continuous flow of data that aids in decision-making?
  • How is the utilization of digital performance management tools to automate traditional analog processes for continuous improvement?

Episode 2: Importance of continuous improvement in manufacturing 

When we speak with guests who are passionate about their jobs, we are transformed into their reality. That´s exactly what happens when you listen to the conversation between Chris Wolff (Wolffie) and Clay Wilker, Northrop Grumman. Clay is passionate about his focus on the manufacturing shop floor where you get a high understanding of the facts of the machines and production process. Listen in to hear about the art of continuous improvement in manufacturing told from a true expert..

Key topics addressed:

  • The importance of shop floor and lean strategies.
  • The key to exposing a problem and how to solve it.
  • The significance of changing mindsets and grooming talent.

Episode 3: Tackling climate change building for building!

Today, we delve into the critical role that buildings play in the fight against climate change. Our guest, Katie McGinty, Vice President and Chief Sustainability and External Relations Officer at Johnson Controls, shares her expertise on how buildings contribute to nearly 40% of global greenhouse gas emissions.

Key topics addressed:

  • How Johnson Controls is leading the charge by implementing innovative solutions to reduce carbon footprints.
  • Transforming building into eco-friendly spaces through smart technologies and energy-efficient systems.
  • Unravelling the blueprints for a greener, more sustainable future.

Episode 4: Successful manufacturing with people

EnerSys is the global leader in stored energy solutions for industrial applications. The EnerSys Operating System (EOS) is the comprehensive framework that drives quality, customer support, and operational excellence across the company. As Global EOS Director at Enersys, Marco Bizi knows human expertise, creativity, and well-being are EOS’ most crucial ingredients. His passion shines through in this episode of The Lean Manufacturer.

Key questions addressed:

  • What is the role of digital technology at EnerSys?
  • What is the most important factor for an organizations success when implementing a Continuous Improvement Program?
  • What happens when companies fail to use the data they have available?

Episode 5: How the connected worker is shaping the course of manufacturing.  

In this episode of The Lean Manufacturer, we delve into the dynamic world of the connected worker and the pivotal role in shaping the future of manufacturing. As industries undergo rapid digital transformation, the fusion of human expertise with cutting-edge technology is redefining the way we produce goods. We speak to Anthony Huffman, Industry 4.0 & Digital Transformation Strategist, at Koch Industries and speak about real-time data providing real-time impact. We explore how the connected worker is armed with real-time data to transform them into decision-making powerhouses.

Key questions addressed:

  • How is the connected worker shaping the course of manufacturing facilities today?
  • What are the common capabilities of the connected worker in terms of discrete to batch and continuous manufacturing processes?
  • How do companies measure transformation successfully and what are the key performance indicators?

Episode 6: Putting the Patient Center Stage of the Manufacturing Process 

In this episode of The Lean Manufacturer, together with Xavier Hansen from the Innovation and IoT team at Thermo Fisher, we talk to the “Ironman Suit” and the delicate balance between creativity and security in the pharmaceutical industry. We´ll discuss how the company tackles the dual challenge of staying cutting-edge while maintaining an unwavering and non-negotiable commitment to security and quality.

Key questions addressed:

  • How to build human centered solutions at an enterprise level and what makes this strategy successful?
  • How do users get the most value from implemented systems?
  • How to avoid other up or downstream teams working in silos?
  • How has Industry 4.0 reshaped our approach to digital manufacturing?

Meet our hosts and guests

Chris Wolff - Sales VP, Strategic Partnerships, PTC Americas

Chris Wolff, aka "Wolffie," joined PTC in November 2022 to create a Field Alliance function within PTC Americas sales, working with the DVP of Sales. This team accelerates customer value and leads complex ecosystems. Formerly, Wolffie led Dell Technologies' Office of Global OEM and IOT Partnerships, simplifying partnerships and chairing the Dell Technologies IoT go-to-market committee. She shaped Dimension Data's presence in the USA for 18 years, growing the group from 1000 to 30,000 employees. She served as Dimension Data's SVP, Group Cisco Alliance, managing a $4 billion partnership. A strategic advisor to Dell, Secureworks, and Seagate, she's on boards like MIT Enterprise Forum and Duke AIMS. She's passionate about mentoring women in STEM, golfing, and supporting the Duke Blue Devils.

Howard Heppelmann - Divisional VP and GM, ThingWorx IoT, PTC

Howard Heppelmann is PTC's Divisional VP and GM for the ThingWorx IoT Solutions segment, overseeing innovative solutions merging disruptive technologies for industrial enhancements. He formerly held roles including VP and GM for ThingWorx IoT Solutions and GM for Connected Product Management and Service Lifecycle Management at PTC. With over three decades in manufacturing, Howard drives the application of Industrie 4.0 and Smart Connected Operations to transform industrial processes in the IoT era. He is an industry seminar regular, presenting on topics including Industrie 4.0 and Smart Connected Products. Howard's insights have been featured in publications like Wall Street Journal and Forbes. He holds degrees in Economics and International Studies from Macalester College.

Clay WIlker - Enterprise Factories of the Future Digital Transformation Solution Owner/Enterprise Lean-Agile Steering Committee, Northrop Grumann

Clay has 34 years of manufacturing experience in the Automotive and Aerospace Industries. He was involved the dramatic growth of the Automotive Safety Airbag growth for 15 years at Autoliv, the World Leader in automotive safety restraints. His most current roles are as a Solution Owner for the Northrop Grumman Enterprise Factories of the Future digital solutions portfolio across the Corporation’s manufacturing operations. Clay was also selected to serve on the Northrop Grumman Enterprise Lean Agile Steering Committee
Clay serves as a Lead Examiner for the Shingo Institute, where for 29 years he leads a team of highly competent lean experts, in the evaluation of Global World Class Companies, against the Shingo Prize criteria for Excellence in Lean manufacturing.

Katie McGinty - Vice President and Chief Sustainability and External Relations Officer for Johnson Controls

Kathleen “Katie” McGinty is Vice President and Chief Sustainability and External elations Officer for Johnson Controls, the global leader for smart, healthy, and sustainable buildings technology. Katie serves on the Executive Committee of the company and helps drive Johnson Controls top tier sustainability performance including recognition as one of the World`s 100 Most Sustainable Corporations, MSCI AAA, Ecovadis Platinum, and CDP Leader Band. Katie has over 25 years of public and private sector experience, and she is a recognized innovator in clean energy and environmental protection.
Her public sector career includes serving as the first woman to chair the White House Council on Environmental Quality and as Deputy Assistant to President Clinton (1993-1998), as Pennsylvania Secretary of Environmental Protection (2003-2008), and as Chair of the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority (2004-2008). She currently serves on boards including the International Steering Committee of the World Sustainable Development Summit, the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, the Carnegie Mellon Scott Institute for Energy Innovation, the Energy Futures Initiative, and MN8 Energy (formerly Goldman Sachs Renewable Power).

Xavier Hansen - Innovation & IIoT lead Thermo Fisher

Xavier Hansen leads the Innovation & IIoT team and the Applied AI Innovation Hub for ThermoFisher’s Pharma Services IT Group (PSG IT). He has 20+ years of experience in agile program management, innovation, emerging technologies, design thinking, digital transformation, IIoT, Industry & Pharma 4.0, Ventures and M&A. He has recruited, built, coached, turned around and/or directed high-performing agile teams and organizations (software engineering, product, design, R&D, business development) across a broad range of industries (OTT/5G/telecom, manufacturing, media & entertainment, advertising, fintech, education, healthcare) in startups, mid-sized companies and Fortune 100s.

Anthony Huffman - Enterprise Architecture Strategist, Industry 4.0, Koch Industries

Anthony Huffman has over 20 years of manufacturing transformation experience in Electronic Solutions, Medical Device, and Aerospace & Defense industries, Tony leads Enterprise Architecture Strategy for Industry 4.0 at Koch Industries. During his tenure at Koch and Molex, Tony has established cutting edge smart manufacturing, operational excellence, and digital supply chain capabilities in more than 20 manufacturing sites, spanning across 12 countries.
Embracing Agile Methodologies in a VUCA environment, Tony has been able to establish the latest in modern MES/MOM, IIOT, Unified Namespace, Industrial Data Fabric, Digital Worker, and Advanced Analytics (ML/AI) Technologies.

Marci Bizi - MBA Global EOS Director TPPL (Lean/Operational Excellence / Continuous Improvement) at EnerSys

Marco Bizi, with more than two decades of experience in lean manufacturing and process optimization, has made significant contributions to the field. His tenure at EnerSys spans over five years, during which he now serves as the Global EOS Director. His specialized knowledge in operational excellence and continuous improvement strategies has been instrumental in driving EnerSys’ success

Chris Wolff - Sales VP, Strategic Partnerships, PTC Americas Chris Wolff, aka "Wolffie," joined PTC in November 2022 to create a Field Alliance function within PTC Americas sales, working with the DVP of Sales. This team accelerates customer value and leads complex ecosystems. Formerly, Wolffie led Dell Technologies' Office of Global OEM and IOT Partnerships, simplifying partnerships and chairing the Dell Technologies IoT go-to-market committee. She shaped Dimension Data's presence in the USA for 18 years, growing the group from 1000 to 30,000 employees. She served as Dimension Data's SVP, Group Cisco Alliance, managing a $4 billion partnership. A strategic advisor to Dell, Secureworks, and Seagate, she's on boards like MIT Enterprise Forum and Duke AIMS. She's passionate about mentoring women in STEM, golfing, and supporting the Duke Blue Devils. Howard Heppelmann - Divisional VP and GM, ThingWorx IoT, PTC Howard Heppelmann is PTC's Divisional VP and GM for the ThingWorx IoT Solutions segment, overseeing innovative solutions merging disruptive technologies for industrial enhancements. He formerly held roles including VP and GM for ThingWorx IoT Solutions and GM for Connected Product Management and Service Lifecycle Management at PTC. With over three decades in manufacturing, Howard drives the application of Industrie 4.0 and Smart Connected Operations to transform industrial processes in the IoT era. He is an industry seminar regular, presenting on topics including Industrie 4.0 and Smart Connected Products. Howard's insights have been featured in publications like Wall Street Journal and Forbes. He holds degrees in Economics and International Studies from Macalester College. Clay WIlker - Enterprise Factories of the Future Digital Transformation Solution Owner/Enterprise Lean-Agile Steering Committee, Northrop Grumann Clay has 34 years of manufacturing experience in the Automotive and Aerospace Industries. He was involved the dramatic growth of the Automotive Safety Airbag growth for 15 years at Autoliv, the World Leader in automotive safety restraints. His most current roles are as a Solution Owner for the Northrop Grumman Enterprise Factories of the Future digital solutions portfolio across the Corporation’s manufacturing operations. Clay was also selected to serve on the Northrop Grumman Enterprise Lean Agile Steering Committee
Clay serves as a Lead Examiner for the Shingo Institute, where for 29 years he leads a team of highly competent lean experts, in the evaluation of Global World Class Companies, against the Shingo Prize criteria for Excellence in Lean manufacturing.
Katie McGinty - Vice President and Chief Sustainability and External Relations Officer for Johnson Controls Kathleen “Katie” McGinty is Vice President and Chief Sustainability and External elations Officer for Johnson Controls, the global leader for smart, healthy, and sustainable buildings technology. Katie serves on the Executive Committee of the company and helps drive Johnson Controls top tier sustainability performance including recognition as one of the World`s 100 Most Sustainable Corporations, MSCI AAA, Ecovadis Platinum, and CDP Leader Band. Katie has over 25 years of public and private sector experience, and she is a recognized innovator in clean energy and environmental protection.
Her public sector career includes serving as the first woman to chair the White House Council on Environmental Quality and as Deputy Assistant to President Clinton (1993-1998), as Pennsylvania Secretary of Environmental Protection (2003-2008), and as Chair of the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority (2004-2008). She currently serves on boards including the International Steering Committee of the World Sustainable Development Summit, the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, the Carnegie Mellon Scott Institute for Energy Innovation, the Energy Futures Initiative, and MN8 Energy (formerly Goldman Sachs Renewable Power).
Xavier Hansen - Innovation & IIoT lead Thermo Fisher Xavier Hansen leads the Innovation & IIoT team and the Applied AI Innovation Hub for ThermoFisher’s Pharma Services IT Group (PSG IT). He has 20+ years of experience in agile program management, innovation, emerging technologies, design thinking, digital transformation, IIoT, Industry & Pharma 4.0, Ventures and M&A. He has recruited, built, coached, turned around and/or directed high-performing agile teams and organizations (software engineering, product, design, R&D, business development) across a broad range of industries (OTT/5G/telecom, manufacturing, media & entertainment, advertising, fintech, education, healthcare) in startups, mid-sized companies and Fortune 100s. Anthony Huffman - Enterprise Architecture Strategist, Industry 4.0, Koch Industries Anthony Huffman has over 20 years of manufacturing transformation experience in Electronic Solutions, Medical Device, and Aerospace & Defense industries, Tony leads Enterprise Architecture Strategy for Industry 4.0 at Koch Industries. During his tenure at Koch and Molex, Tony has established cutting edge smart manufacturing, operational excellence, and digital supply chain capabilities in more than 20 manufacturing sites, spanning across 12 countries.
Embracing Agile Methodologies in a VUCA environment, Tony has been able to establish the latest in modern MES/MOM, IIOT, Unified Namespace, Industrial Data Fabric, Digital Worker, and Advanced Analytics (ML/AI) Technologies.
Marci Bizi - MBA Global EOS Director TPPL (Lean/Operational Excellence / Continuous Improvement) at EnerSys Marco Bizi, with more than two decades of experience in lean manufacturing and process optimization, has made significant contributions to the field. His tenure at EnerSys spans over five years, during which he now serves as the Global EOS Director. His specialized knowledge in operational excellence and continuous improvement strategies has been instrumental in driving EnerSys’ success

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