Company - ITW

Illinois Tool Works (ITW) is a diversified manufacturing company with nearly 100 years of history in delivering specialized expertise, innovative thinking and value-added products to meet critical customer needs in a variety of industries. ITW has more than 875 decentralized business units in 54 countries that employ approximately 65,000 employees. These talented individuals, many of whom have specialized engineering or scientific expertise, contribute to our global leadership in patents and patent applications, witch currently exceeds 21,600.

Decentralized Business Model
We believe that our structure of 875 operating business units allows us to stay close to our customers and leverage intimate local market expertise to protect and foster entrepreneurial ingenuity and agility.

80/20 Business Simplification
It is a well-known maxim that 80 percent of a business’s profit comes from 20 percent of its products and customers. At ITW, our 80/20 process is applied rigorously and continuously, and accounts for much of our success. By focusing on our most profitable products and customers, our businesses quickly focus on what drives growth and profit. Whether it involves product line simplification, cellular manufacturing and outsourcing, or taking the time to get to know key customers, we maximize efficiency and increase profitability by concentrating our efforts on our best products, processes and customers.

The strategies that make up the 80/20 process are so much a part of our daily operations that they are known internally as the ITW Toolbox. Our people appreciate the importance of this process and routinely apply it to all they do. This disciplined approach helps improve efficiency and increase customer satisfaction.

Since our inception, innovation has been one of ITW’s greatest assets. Creative thinking is encouraged in every aspect of our business and plays a crucial role in both customer satisfaction and profitability. It allows us to create new products and processes that meet customer needs, take advantage of new business opportunities and adapt to changing markets. Innovation is an important part of ITW’s culture. Every day, our highly skilled engineers, sales professionals and managers work tirelessly to solve complex manufacturing problems and provide products that satisfy customers. These efforts have resulted in thousands of patents over the years. In 2008, we had over 21,000 active patents and pending applications worldwide.

ITW supports this high level of innovation with the ITW Technology Center, a unique and valuable resource that provides advanced consulting to our business units on everything from manufacturing processes and product design, to product enhancement and the creation of new, cuttingedge materials.