Resource Guide for Manufacturing Companies in Florida

26 Sep | Resources

FloridaMakes is the glue that holds the state’s manufacturing ecosystem together and ensures it can sustain the success of manufacturing companies in Florida. As Manufacturing Month in Florida approaches this October, Cenfluence connected Cluster Members with representatives from FloridaMakes and its regional partner, the Manufacturers Association of Central Florida (MACF), to showcase the statewide and local resources available to manufacturing companies in Florida.

Cenfluence webinars are typically offered as an exclusive Cluster Member benefit, however, we were proud to offer this webinar for all manufacturing companies across the Florida High Tech Corridor as we support FloridaMakes’ vision to position Florida as the “factory floor for U.S. manufacturing” and produce more output per manufacturing worker than any other state by 2030.

The following information summarizes what we learned about available resources in Florida’s manufacturing ecosystem for Cenfluence Cluster Members and manufacturing companies across The Corridor.

The FloridaMakes Network

FloridaMakes partners with regional manufacturers associations to facilitate service delivery and provide tailored support to manufacturing companies statewide.

Two FloridaMakes business advisors are available to help manufacturing companies in Central Florida:

Much like our Cenfluence cluster management team, FloridaMakes business advisors conduct business assessments and support the navigation of resources to help manufacturing companies improve practices on the plant floor, train or restructure their leadership, identify and apply for grant funding, and more.

Initial business assessments are always free, even for manufacturing companies that are not affiliated with their regional manufacturers’ association.

The value of a business advisor’s fresh perspective cannot be overstated. Feedback from nearly 600 companies that have benefitted from FloridaMakes business advisory services underlines the impact of this offering. Since 2016, these firms generated a combined $2.6 billion in total sales, secured $688 million in new investments, saved $213.5 million in costs, and created and retained more than 20,000 jobs.

Manufacturers Association of Central Florida

Nearly 200 members strong, MACF is the gateway to manufacturing resources for Central Florida companies and their connection to FloridaMakes’ statewide ecosystem. The association primarily provides support by sharing best practices, advocating for the profession and connecting members with workforce development solutions. Highlights include:

  • Access to partnerships with K-12 schools, state colleges, technical colleges and universities
  • Monthly plant tours where members can “talk shop” and share best practices
  • Help identifying and applying for grant funding
  • Discussions with state and federal legislators to educate them on important industry issues

For more information about MACF, including membership information, contact:

Donnie Casey, Executive Director

Manufacturing Ecosystem Resource Guide

FloridaMakes and its partners also create and deliver resources specifically to address key areas of concern for manufacturing companies, including workforce training, technological innovation and government legislation.

Talent Development & Education:

  • The Florida Advanced Technological Education Center (FLATE) is a National Science Foundation Center of Excellence in high technology manufacturing. FLATE offers resources and best practices for manufacturing and advanced technical education to develop a high performance skilled workforce for Florida’s manufacturing sectors. If you are interested in building relationships with educational institutions in Florida, FLATE is the place to go for connections.
  • Adopt-a-School increases student awareness of manufacturing career opportunities. Manufacturers are encouraged to partner with local educators on activities, such as facility tours, donation of equipment or materials for learning labs, guest instruction and skills competitions. This is a great activity for manufacturing companies to pursue in October during Manufacturing Month in Florida.
  • The Industrial Manufacturing Technician Apprenticeship program trains frontline workers to learn and apply skills required for advanced manufacturing production. Participants are prepared to work in diverse settings, including food production, foundries, plastics and biomedical production.
  • Apprentice of the Year Awards support talent retention by recognizing key employees for exceptional work and dedication. Any Florida company with a registered apprenticeship program may participate.
    Employer of Choice Awards recognize top manufacturing companies in Florida and elevate their reputation as a desirable place to work. Nominees submit to a third-party assessment of their company that provides valuable business insights from which they may benefit, even if they don’t win an award.
  • MFG 2022 is the Manufacturing Day campaign designed to change the perception of manufacturing careers and inspire more students to pursue related careers. FLATE provides tools to help educators and industry hosts make the most of this opportunity.

Business Growth & Technology Acceleration:

  • The Florida Sterling Manufacturing Business Excellence Award presented by FloridaMakes and The Sterling Council recognizes high-performing manufacturing companies, provides opportunities for organizational learning and development, and promotes and elevates participating manufacturers in Florida. Every participant learns best practices to improve their organization, even if they are not a finalist.
  • Connex Florida is an online supply chain database where manufacturers can showcase their capabilities, find suppliers or be listed as a supplier, connect with other manufacturers and share information about business needs.
  • GrowFL is Florida’s only organization exclusively dedicated to support and accelerate the growth of second-stage companies. Programs under the GrowFL umbrella include leadership institutes, CEO roundtable discussions, entrepreneurship mentoring and access to just-in-time expertise.
  • The Bob Provitola Manufacturing Leadership Award celebrates manufacturing leaders who go above and beyond to make a difference in their communities through advocacy, mentorship, volunteerism and more.


  • Florida Manufacturing & Supply Chain Advocacy Council is a statewide coalition of manufacturing champions who leverage local relationships and lead grassroots campaigns to address legislative issues impacting the industry. The coalition also organizes annual Florida Manufacturing Advocacy Days in Tallahassee.
  • The Manufacturing & Supply Chain Caucus was established in the 2020-2021 Legislative Session by a group of Florida legislators who are committed to promoting the economic and social benefits of Florida’s manufacturers, and serve as a resource for fellow lawmakers.


  • MFG Month 2022 webinar, Sept. 21, at 3:30 p.m., is hosted by FLATE to provide more information about Manufacturing Month in Florida for companies and educators interested in spreading the word about modern manufacturing careers.
  • MakeMore Manufacturing Summit, Oct. 12-13, at the GuideWell Innovation Center in Orlando is the place where manufacturing sector companies, support organizations and state leaders meet annually to share best practices and exchange ideas about how state resources are addressing the impact of market dynamics, economic trends and policies, and new technologies available for the manufacturing sector.

For more information, or for support navigating the many resources available to manufacturing companies in Florida, please contact our Cenfluence team.

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