By Christopher Weaver and Kevin Cooke, CliftonLarsonAllen Many manufacturing executives consider their annual audit to be a process that adds little value and distracts from management’s priorities. However, despite time-consuming procedures that are part of every audit due to regulatory and professional standards, a good auditor can tailor the process based on your needs and…

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Carrot Cake - Piece of Cake and Eat it too

By: Shane Slominski, Partner at Tonka Bay Equity Partners When thinking about succession planning, most business owners think they only have two options – they can either sell their business outright or continue to own and manage the business.  There’s a third option that isn’t widely known but can be a great solution too: a…

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Pencil sharpener

The situation A few weeks ago, a quote request arrived for a new product.  It had high volumes, and it was an excellent fit for your facility. You ran it through your estimating program, submitted your price, and then you got the dreaded call.  The buyer told you, “Your prices are double-digits too high.”.  You…

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Football play on chalkboard

It’s mid-October, and as I write this I’ve had an item on my to-do list for a month that says “Update 4th quarter plan”, and another that says, “Prepare 2021 plan”.  My brain tells me that I should do it, but I always seem to find something else that is supposedly more pressing to work…

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Glasses calculator and phone on a messy desk

I hear it all the time.  We’re losing our tail on this product.  Should we kill it?  The question is well-intended, but often the analysis that leads to the answer is misguided.  Companies that rely on standard cost systems to understand product costs, which is the vast majority of manufacturers, can easily fall victim to…

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