While Utah has a wide range of businesses, they often share common goals: reducing costs, saving time and improving the quality of their products and services. Utah manufacturers have long sought to meet those goals by finding in-state suppliers of needed parts and materials. In that way, they could not only enhance their own businesses and customers, but they could also reduce outsourcing and boost Utah entrepreneurs and communities, all at the same time.
These common interests are what spurred development of the Utah Capabilities Assessment Network, an online connection between in-state manufacturers and suppliers. UCAN is a secure portal that enables manufacturers and suppliers to find each other easily and quickly, and to learn whether they have products, capabilities, capacities and certifications needed to conduct mutually beneficial transactions.
Manufacturers can go to the portal and type in key words (NAICS codes, certifications, components, equipment names, sub-assemblies, etc.) with which to search the UCAN database for needed products and services. “It’s all there at their fingertips,” a UCAN spokesperson said.
Suppliers will go to the database and do what they do best: supply. In this case, it will be information about their firms. Data entry should take about an hour, the spokesperson said.
The Utah Manufacturers Association said that even during meetings developing the portal, business deals were struck between suppliers and manufacturers. In one meeting, a $70 million contract was born and in another gathering, a $100 million series of projects took root.
The portal serves as something like an online dating service. Participants get to know each other and if all goes well, they’ll sit down with a business attorney to examine contract details and make the business relationship official.
Source: UtahPolicy.com, "Bringing Business Back to Utah," June 30, 2014