ENGINEERING IS IN HIS DNA – Bob’s love for creating and building things started when he was very young and has continued in both his professional and personal life. His father was an engineer at 3M and always had a machine shop in his garage or workshop. Bob was helping his father design and machine parts before he entered his teenage years.
While in school Bob took all the shop classes that were available and was offered a machining/engineering internship at 3M in Austin, Texas after graduation. Although he was primarily a “gopher” in his position, Bob was exposed to the design and manufacturing process – and he was hooked! Bob earned an Associate Degree in Machine Tool Processes/Tool & Die Mold Making at Saint Paul College and went back for an additional semester to learn CNC programming.
Bob spent 17 years at a manufacturing company that built analog prepress equipment for the offset printing industry. He was originally hired as a machinist but was quickly promoted to the machine-building/assembly area. Bob feels that accepting this challenge is one of the best decisions he ever made because he was able to machine components AND build things!
Bob shared, “As my career progressed, I had some very good mentors that gave me advice and opportunities as a leader and a manager. It also groomed me to serve as a mentor for other people.” Eventually, Bob was promoted to the Manufacturing Manager position overseeing machining, welding, painting, electrical assembly, and mechanical assembly. Production planning, inventory control, purchasing, production, customer service, quality, and shipping were added to Bob’s list of responsibilities in the final years that he held the position.
Bob joined our team at Wyoming Machine in 2009 after his previous employer dissolved in the wake of digital printing equipment replacing analog systems. Instead of being a user of sheet metal components, Bob became a sheet metal supplier. In 2012, Wyoming Machine combined the Estimating and Engineering departments into a unified team. Communication is key between these two groups and having them together allows them to work closely from the start of the quoting process, through the creation of production documents, to the actual production of components.
“Manufacturing is manufacturing no matter what you are producing. If you provide quality items and maintain great customer and vendor relationships, you can do anything.” – Bob Loder
Bob gives much credit to his team saying, “In my opinion, the team of engineers and estimators at Wyoming Machine are unmatched in the industry with their years of experience and dedication.” With a combined total of 206 years of experience in sheet metal fabrication, Bob and his team are here to help you with your next project!
It’s no secret that technical college customized training is a life-saver for manufacturers. What you may not know is that Lori Tapani and Traci Tapani, Co-Presidents of Wyoming Machine, helped make that happen in Central Minnesota. Now they and their employees—are reaping the benefits.
For 21 years, Lori and Traci have worked closely with Pine Technical and Community College in Central Minnesota. Continue reading “Internet Television Classes: A Game-Changer at Wyoming Machine”
Kent Hering and his wife, Betsy, have come a long way since their first camping trip in 1976 where they discovered they couldn’t start a fire. Years later, Kent is owner and founder of Littlbug Enterprises, producer of light-weight, stainless steel camp stoves. They require no maintenance kit, spare parts, wind screens or heat exchangers. Best of all, the stove can be rolled up in a sleeping pad instead of taking up space in a pack. Continue reading “Hot Idea: Wyoming Machine Works with Entrepreneur to Create Award Winning Camp Stove”
Remember Robert Bjoraker—the husband and proud father whose family was homeless at one point? Wyoming Machine Inc. hired him as a part-time custodian three years ago. But Traci and Lori Tapani believe in employee growth, training and promoting from within. In fact, they’re now national leaders for that practice. As a result, Robert has advanced to the highly technical position of laser cutter. Continue reading “From Homeless to Happy: Robert Bjoraker’s Ascent at Wyoming Machine”
The surprise about WMI’s recent tour for nine Metro Deaf School high school students and three staff was that the event was as rewarding for employees, and owners, sisters Traci and Lori Tapani, as it was for students. Continue reading “Tour for Deaf Students Inspires Students and Wyoming Machine”
Gallup: “Companies cannot afford to ignore 50% of the potential workforce
and expect to be competitive in the global economy.”
If you’re in manufacturing, you know all about the worker shortage and how much it’s costing your company. Continue reading “Worker Shortage Woes? Hire women. Here’s Why and How”