In April 2021, Oklahoma Governor, Kevin Stitt, announced the launch of Supply Chain Oklahoma (SCO), an effort to provide critical resources to Oklahoma manufacturers.
The first key piece of the initiative to be rolled out is “Connex Oklahoma,” a new, free online database tool developed by the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance (OMA) in partnership with the Oklahoma Department of Commerce (Commerce). The tool allows manufacturers to connect, find alternate suppliers, explore production capabilities and view their supply chain visually. Just as important, it also helps manufacturers identify single-supplier risks and find opportunities for diversification in their supply chain.
“The pandemic helped identify significant needs when it comes to securing and bolstering supply chains, especially in identifying local resources, ” said Gov. Stitt. “Supply Chain Oklahoma and this Connex platform will boost our state’s competitiveness and give manufacturers complete information to make decisions that benefit their business and the broader community. We know Oklahoma wins when we collaborate at a high level.”
Connex Oklahoma gives manufacturers immediate access to information on potential suppliers and customers within our state, with results filtered to match a company’s specific needs. The platform is also designed to incorporate the “Manufacturing Marketplace” developed by the National Association of Manufacturers, comprised of more than 165,000 manufacturers across the U.S.
“Our Connex Oklahoma online database is a powerful new tool for Oklahoma manufacturers,” said Dave Rowland, president of the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance. “Over the past year, we’ve seen how critical it is to have secure and reliable supply chains, as well as having ready access to alternate suppliers. This database will be unique in its ability to identify manufacturing capabilities, not just current production.”
Connex Oklahoma has the capability to highlight a company’s assets, certifications, equipment, material types and other relevant industry information to help other manufacturers find them. The platform allows manufacturers to view and post requests for proposals (RFPs) and requests for surplus materials or equipment, as well as other unique needs posted by members to the platform.
“It really takes the guesswork out of capitalizing on opportunities,” Rowland added. “An added bonus is its integration with the Manufacturing Extension Partnership, which will give Oklahoma manufacturers an edge when exploring national and international prospects.”
Manufacturers wanting to register for the Connex Oklahoma database can visit www.okalliance.com/connex-oklahoma.
In addition, the online tool offers a platform allowing large manufacturers to hold virtual matchmaking events and find new suppliers while setting up interviews. The broader SCO effort will grow essential manufacturing segments in Oklahoma, filling a national defense role by helping Oklahoma companies increase their participation in defense supply chains.
“Commerce is thrilled to partner with OMA and provide this platform to our industrial base,” said Secretary of Commerce, Scott Mueller. “Not only will Connex provide Oklahoma manufacturers a technologically-driven competitive advantage relative to the rest of the country, it will facilitate the establishment of industry clusters specific to Oklahoma’s unique strengths.”
Secretary Mueller went on to describe how the business development team will utilize this platform to identify gaps in industry and work to recruit and expand strategic sectors in Oklahoma.
Virtual calls will be held throughout April to provide manufacturers and economic development organizations more information about Connex Oklahoma and the full extent of resources available through the Supply Chain Oklahoma initiative, including the Supplier Scouting program offered by the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance.
Follow the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and the Oklahoma Department of Commerce (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and look for more information.
About the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance
The Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance is a unique network of trusted experts working with companies to help them grow and evolve. In partnership with an array of professionals, the organization connects firms to local, state and national resources. Services reach all 77 counties, expanding industry, creating jobs, and raising the standard of living in communities across the state.
About the Oklahoma Department of Commerce
The Oklahoma Department of Commerce is the lead economic development entity for the state, bringing employment, investment, and economic prosperity to Oklahoma. Through dynamic partnerships and innovative collaborations with companies, universities, not-for-profit organizations, and government leaders, Commerce works to build an environment that supports business growth and shared community prosperity.