One year ago marks the official launch of our new August Electronics Inc. brand. This was nearly a four year journey of change management in the making. As with any major marketing initiative we wanted to create a closer connection with our business partners. This wasn’t just a new mission statement or list of values on a revamped website and displaying a new logo. It was a strategically layered plan aimed at showcasing what local manufacturing can be and why we continue to be the best positioned to offer it.
As with many organizations this involves a comprehensive inward reflection on what we wanted to convey. It meant looking at our successes, failures and learned experiences over 25 years. It meant structuring and streamlining business units with the sole purpose of improving processes and how we manage our operations. Most of all it meant letting our own employees and customers tell us where we could improve.
If any organization has conducted an internal SWOT review of their operation we commend you. While a certain humility comes with it – we can learn and integrate how we are viewed beyond a corporate scorecard or plaque of values at the front door. To be genuine means to act as a direct descendent to your values and provide the chance for your people to carry the message.
Defining a roadmap for success can be routed in many ways. What was clear to us was that we needed to expand with a message that went beyond referrals. We needed to be industry advocates and leaders. We needed to create sustainable guides and resources for those who needed it. We required deeper relationships with the drivers and influencers of our field. Perhaps most importantly we needed to let people see what can be achieved with local manufacturing.
We want to pause and reflect on what we experienced during this discovery.
For all of us living and working in Alberta we clearly understand the impact of our cyclical oil and gas market. Disruption within the energy sector for a multitude of reasons opened the door for further advocacy towards Technology, AI, IOT and Blockchain. The need for change and diversification became obvious with government agencies, industry associations and corporate leaders aligned in building our market as a Technology hub. Regardless of the industry, the 2020 projected spend on digitization in Alberta alone is $18.4B. According to Calgary Economic Development the Oil & Gas, Electric Utilities and Power companies will make up $4.2B just in renewables and clean technologies.
International Data Corporation (IDC) conducted market research on IOT development and are projecting a $1.1T global spend by 2023. To support corporate mandates of “achieving more with less”, the IOT development sector will be one of the fastest growing.
We all recognize the need to expand our capabilities within the Tech sector. This past year allowed us to uniquely partner with many industry champions and leaders; Platform, Team Calgary, SAIT, Alberta IOT and IOT North. We’ve assisted in creating an eco-system fully supportive of innovation. We established the first Electronics academic award for graduating students at SAIT.
From concept to commercial reality; we align with all players to deliver a value set to invest here.
Not many Albertans would realize that electronics manufacturing happens right in our backyard, let alone at the scale and magnitude that it does. It’s our job to change that narrative moving forward.
We’ve created multiple blogs associated to the lineage and value of re-shoring work. Local partnerships and the value of protecting the eco-system close to home. While the offshore markets carry distinct differences in labor and scalability, we are seeing a collision of socio-economic and geo-political impact with contentious issues specific to trade tariffs, intellectual property and security. Taking a lifecycle view of the products rather than a straight commodity approach has opened numerous gateways for companies to design, build and sustain marketing here as the costs become more balanced.
When the energy sector plummeted, we (like everyone) were impacted. We found ourselves in the unique position of fortune and timing when commercial property began to increase in availability. An opportunity arose to not just consolidate our operations under one roof – but expand our manufacturing footprint and provide a long term vision for growth. Our 85,000 ft2 facility ensures we have the right mix of production capabilities now and into the future.
In addition to several community initiatives we wanted to engage our audience in a unique way. We created a corporate video with images that celebrate the industries we participate in, and enlighten new prospective customers that we have a state of the art electronic manufacturing operation right here in Calgary. We specifically aimed at creating value on our website to connect with us either by Industries served, capabilities or services we provide and of course the Lifecycle of your potential product. We recognize the changing conditions in our economy and the more support we can provide to start-ups and innovators, the better.
We’ve elevated our profile successfully on many fronts but we still have a lot of road to pave in emerging markets. To augment our manufacturing capabilities, we’ve added additional production equipment. This includes a new ASM high speed SMT line, N2 lead free wave soldering and additional AOI. We are currently engaged in completing our Medical ISO certification and we also just received our APEGA certificate.
Electronics are in every industry and it powers everything we do. The development is endless and we can attract the right businesses here to grow and diversify our economy. We proudly employ over one hundred staff and give back to local causes like the Louise Dean Centre. We want to build a sustaining footprint here for years to come.
It goes without saying the impact of COVID-19 will be felt for a long time in Canada and across the globe. What resonates with all of us is the importance of local business and a community helping one another rebuild. We owe it to our families, our children and our partners to be focused on a supportive network. As we reflect on the past year of change we hope everyone recognizes how important local business is for everyone – Forward Together.