2023 IPC Apex Conference: What We Learned

I love having the opportunity to travel to shows and events around the country. It’s not only about meeting new people, but also the chance to learn more about our industry and what’s coming next. We’re able to take this information back to our employees and our customers to help improve our processes and introduce new solutions.  I recently attended the 2023 IPC Apex conference, and here are just a few of the highlights.

  1. AI.  We talk a lot about how Automated Intelligence is impacting the future of electronics manufacturing, and never has that been more clear.  We saw equipment that we’re adding to our line right now that completely automates optical inspection (AOI) without the need of a human being, not to mention completely new manufacturing devices coming to market that will allow us to conduct PCB Assembly ever-more efficiently for our clients.  
  2. Hardware. It’s no longer about having the right hardware in place.  We all do.  Now it’s about the software – that’s what really is going to make a difference.  Yes, our proprietary Amtech OS is the software that drives our company forward. However, there were so many new integrations and code that will help our platform go even further, and amplify the hardware in which we’ve already invested last even longer. Both of which will benefit our clients with shorter turn-around times and more efficient solutions.
  3. Attendance. After the past few years, it was great to see so many people attend an event like this in person. We had a chance to reconnect with old friends, and make plenty of new ones. Can’t wait to keep seeing them at other events throughout the year. Plus, the next generation of leadership was on display. With manufacturing being a process of linear, incremental growth, it was great to learn that new leaders with new ideas are re-energizing our industry.
  4. High Mix.  At one point, a business model based high mix avoided due to the amount of management and risk required. Not any more. Software-optimized equipment makes it easier than ever to launch and build a high volume of specific products easily and efficiently. Fortunately for us (and our customers), Amtech is already set up for High Mix and High Reliability, because that’s where we are headed as an industry.

All of this really helps us validate the approach we take for our customers. We talked with a lot of leaders at the event who recognized that Amtech’s strategic decisions from MRP, equipment investment and business structure was correct.  Our best practices reflect that of the industry as a whole, which puts us at the forefront of domestic electronics manufacturing.

We’ll be at a lot of events this year, so please drop me a line and let me know where you’ll be. Would love to take a minute to network with you, and see how we can help drive one another’s business forward both today and into the future.

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