Partnership to Enhance Innovation, Resilience and Agility in Missouri’s Manufacturers

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Responding to Critical Needs

Overcoming the most pressing challenges facing Missouri manufacturers by partnering together.

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Responding to Critical Needs for MO Manufacturers

The Partnership to Enhance Innovation, Resilience and Agility in Missouri's Manufacturers (Partnership) leverages the expertise of faculty and students on the four UM campuses to serve the state's manufacturers through education, topic-focused roundtable discussions, and company-specific projects. Missouri manufacturing struggled during the pandemic and continue to face pressing challenges with the supply chain, job recruitment and retention, the development of more efficient production processes, and more. The Partnership was created to address the needs of the more than 5,400 Missouri manufacturers – both urban and rural – by bringing UM resources to the manufacturing companies that need them.

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    Cohort Activities

    The Partnership to Enhance Innovation, Resilience and Agility in Missouri's Manufacturers serves urban and rural Missouri manufacturers through regional Cohorts of 8-10 companies. Cohort activities are driven by local needs to address challenges inhibiting economic recovery and will include:

    • Educational Sessions
    • Subject matter expert presentations
    • Facilitated discussions among cohort companies (roundtables)
    • Company-specific projects to enhance competitiveness
    • Visits to company facilities

    Educational sessions and subject matter expert presentations will be based on regional needs and could include cyber security, machine learning, supply chain/logistics, workforce issues, automation, resilience, plant layout, and joint opportunities for product and technology development.

    Already part of an existing roundtable or cohort of manufacturers? Connect with us to get your existing cohort involved in this Partnership.

    Located in southeast or northeast Missouri? Connect with us to join the newly formed cohorts. Located in a region without an existing cohort? Connect with us to get started.

    Note: The Partnership will not duplicate existing technical assistance programs already working with Missouri manufacturers or create new regional roundtables, groups, or cohorts of manufacturers where there is potential to partner and collaborate with similar existing efforts.

    link to accessible Missouri map below

    Accessible map PDF

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    Manufacturer Specific Projects

    The Partnership budget includes a total of $250,000 in matching funds to support UM faculty, subject matter experts and students to work on projects that aid the success of your business. University Teams from any of the four UM campuses can be deployed for company-specific projects to enhance competitiveness and resilience. Companies can request up to a 50% match in funding from the Partnership. Missouri-owned manufacturers started within the past five years with less than $750,000 annual revenue can request a reduced match. Projects are selected based on fit with EDA grant guidelines, available funding, and impact. Please see full project information.

    Example available projects:

    • Assessments in: Automation, Supply Chain, Cost Savings, Ergonomics, Process Improvement, Data Analytics, Environmental Impact, Quality Assurance, Energy Evaluation, and more;
    • Custom leadership, management and employee trainings;
    • Lean manufacturing in production processes;
    • Computer Science Projects: Cyber security; VR/AR environments, artificial intelligence, sensor technology, software engineering, media post-production, web application development;
    • Engineering Design and Prototyping;
    • Technology exploration and cost assessments for 3-D printing and more.

    Project funds cannot be used for:

    • Acquisition of physical assets by companies, including machinery, new software purchases, etc.;
    • Private consulting fees.

    Please use this form to describe what kind of assistance you need or to provide detail on the specific challenge you are facing. Partnership staff will then consult with you for further information and identify UM System resources to assist.

    Project inquiry form

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    Get Involved

    Expectations for Partnership Companies

    1. Participate in a regional Cohort with other manufacturers by meeting virtually or in person every 4-6 weeks.
    2. Attend at least 75 percent of Cohort meetings.
    3. Maintain complete confidentiality regarding Cohort discussions and other Cohort participants.
    4. Report economic impact for your company as a result of Cohort participation, i.e., jobs created or retained, sales increases, new investments in the company (impact collection form attached).
    5. Cooperate should you be selected for surveys designed to evaluate Partnership services.
    6. Provide input to Partnership staff regarding topics for educational sessions and discussions.

    Learn more

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University of Missouri Extension has been awarded funding from the US Economic Development Administration for an 18-month statewide pilot project to take the resources of the UM System to the state's manufacturers. This Partnership uses Federal funds under award 05-79-06062 URI 115939 from the EDA Cares Act Recovery Assistance, U.S. Department of Commerce. The statements, finding, conclusions and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the EDA Cares Act Recovery Assistance or the U.S. Department of Commerce