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Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center (IMEC)

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IMEC is a team of improvement specialists and technicians dedicated to providing organizations in Illinois with the tools and techniques to create sustainable competitive futures. The experienced hands-on team at IMEC works closely with its clients to plan critical business improvements in the areas of Leadership, Strategy, Customers, Operations, Workforce, and Results.

With more than 50 full-time staff and partners positioned statewide, IMEC delivers the local expertise to not only PLAN and strategize, but to IMPLEMENT those processes and EXCEL the effectiveness of client improvements. In fact, IMEC assists more than 700 companies each year with successful business improvement projects. As a result, IMEC has demonstrated a return on investment that exceeds 19:1. This is made possible as organizations become more effective and efficient - and together with IMEC – grow their competitive futures. 

Manufacturers throughout the state of Illinois have turned to IMEC to help tackle some of the industry’s most difficult topics like:  Skilled Labor, Continuous Improvement, Technology, Risk Management, Leadership Development, Supply Chain, Process Design, and much more!

For example:  Atlas Tool & Die Works, Inc. was faced with a new customer requirement for compliance to the recently released NIST Special Publication SP 800-171, Atlas Tool & Die Works realized their small manufacturing business must act quickly and address the government regulation. NIST SP 800-171 Protecting Controlled Unclassified Information in Nonfederal Information Systems and Organizations is a requirement for all Department of Defense (DoD) contractors that process, store or transmit Controlled Unclassified Information (CUI) to meet the DFARS minimum security standards. Lacking a full-time information technology staff, Atlas needed the extra support and called upon IMEC as a trusted resource to help decipher the guidelines, assess their current vulnerabilities and execute the improvements before a strict deadline.

Zach Mottl, Chief Alignment Officer from Atlas Tool & Die Works stated, “I don’t know how we would have done this without IMEC. As a small company, we’re limited on financial and administrative resources for this type of compliance. Our internal people are stretched thin, so having IMEC as an extension of our team has been tremendous.”

Their Results?

  • Increased cybersecurity compliance from initial assessment of 40% to 100% compliance in 6 months
  • Full compliance to NIST SP 800-171
  • No reported intrusions or violations since the organization achieved compliance
  • Increased awareness and participation by staff in information security programs and reporting

Click here for more information about IMEC’s solution for Atlas Tool & Die Works, Inc.

View the One Pager for Illinois

Success Stories

Carlinville manufacturer achieves ISO 9001:2015 certification and sees improvement in work culture, customer satisfaction, and their bottom line.

Report Year
After learning about the benefits of becoming ISO 9001 certified in 1993, Area Diesel knew it would be an advantageous path. However, no one on staff could seem to find the time to devote to pursuing certification. It wasn’t until one of their valued customers was acquired by a larger entity, who was ISO 9001 certified and required the same of

"It is a work in progress but I am certain we could not be producing the volume we are now producing without the team lead program in place."

—Tim Giddens, Chief Operating Officer

Created March 18, 2019, Updated February 11, 2021