Our February member highlight is on Tom Simpkins, Interim Director of Nevada Industry Excellence (NVIE)!
NVIE is a statewide public-private partnership that delivers business solutions to Nevada manufacturers, and is part of the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) national network with a federal charter to help small and medium-sized manufacturers thrive in today’s technology-driven economy. Tom joined NVIE in 2019, bringing more than 18 years of manufacturing, sales, and marketing experience to NVIE. Tom is a proud 6th generation Nevadan and a graduate of the University of Nevada, Reno.
Nevada manufacturing continues to grow and expand in the Silver State and is poised to play a large role in providing future economic diversity for our state. Workforce continues to be a challenge for manufacturers. It’s difficult to recruit and retain skilled and engaged employees with a small workforce pool. Many organizations in our state are working collectively to address this challenge. It requires the coordinated efforts of a private-public partnership of education, government and industry to provide the skilled workforce our businesses need. NVIE is an integral part of our statewide effort on workforce development, providing companies customized programs for employee development and assisting with Manufacturing Technician certification program.
The pandemic has forced manufacturers to assess the resiliency of their businesses. Many have evaluated contingency plans along with potential options to pivot their business to other markets. Resilient manufacturers operate based on data-driven decision making across their entire environment of outputs. Manufacturing best practices include identifying and documenting standard work so the business can continue to produce for customers, employees and other stakeholders regardless of external factors. NVIE is there to help Nevada manufacturers implement these best practices.
Supply chain diversity is a huge opportunity for our state. Manufacturing lies at the center of a large and complex value chain from raw materials to finished products to end consumers. For every full-time job in manufacturing, there are 3.4 full-time equivalent jobs created in non-manufacturing sectors. Furthermore, when Nevada manufacturers develop effective domestic supply chains, they can lower production costs, increase efficiencies, and mitigate risks and disruption. Tom believes that the synergy and interconnection between manufacturing and supply chain services will afford our state the opportunity for continued jobs growth and economic diversification.
Having worked for manufacturers for his entire career and being a native, Nevada manufacturing is near and dear to Tom’s heart. Tom see a bright future in Nevada manufacturing and feels honored and thrilled to be a part of it. When not working with manufacturers, Tom enjoys coaching a youth football team and spending time with his family. Tom is also an avid fan of Nevada Wolf Pack athletics.