Notes from the IPC Board meeting: What’s in it for you?

IPC President Denny McGuirk’s June 1 Editorial, IPC InTouch

The IPC Board asked us in 2008 to generate a comprehensive strategic plan for the future of the organization. We’ve talked about it before, but the focus was global growth and, especially, growing our presence in China. This doesn’t take days or months; it takes years. And after a year like 2009, some things have to be restarted, rebuilt or renewed.

Early in May, the senior staff and I met with the Board for a full day and a half to review our strategic progress. We’re certainly not anywhere near done but we do continue to progress in Asia and Europe. Now, an important question is, if you’re not outside North America, why should you care?

I will tell you that this strategic planning has one goal in mind: the benefit of our members. It is the Board’s firm belief (and I share it completely) that IPC standards must be globally accepted to remain relevant. They agree that our entire membership benefits from global standards generation, review and usage. Imagine building boards or specifying them to standards generated elsewhere — especially if there is no user input or consensus process.

Standards, certification and training: they go hand in hand and are a critical part of our strategic plans. Here’s a short review of where we are today:

China: The office now numbers 13 full-time or contract staff. We have offices in Shanghai and Shenzhen. Certification training in all programs is offered through IPC staff. In China, we are supporting more than 20 active standards committees and 150 company members.

Malaysia: We have a joint venture with the Selangor Human Resource Development Centre (SHRDC) to offer IPC certification in IPC-A-600, IPC-A-610 and Certified Interconnect Designer training and testing. Standards task group Malaysia continues to grow with 74 members. We expect to add a representative in Southeast Asia in 2010.

India: We have a joint venture with the IPC/Industry Association Training Center to offer IPC certification in IPC-A-600, IPC-A-610 and IPC-7711/21.

Europe: We have recently added distributors in Spain and Austria.

Lars Wallin, our European representative, will appear at 14 industry events in 2010. Membership in Europe is at 356, up 13 percent from a year ago. Standards task group Nordic has been active for several years; we are working now to start a task group in Germany.

Russia: Yury Kovalevsky, our Russian representative, continues to set up events and assist IPC distributors with sales and translation. Kovalevsky is working on starting a Russian committee task group.

What’s next? On June 30, we will be reporting to the Board on specific investments necessary to expand IPC standards and presence faster and deeper. With the economy improving, there’s no time to waste. I look forward to sharing our plans with you.

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