Having been designated a Top Shop 2 years running is very gratifying. As you might guess, we did not get there by crossing our fingers hoping things were going well.
The best thing about these two benchmarking efforts is not the recognition. The Top Shop, as well as our two national awards from the When Work Works initiative on effective and flexible workplaces, is you use them as learning experiences, to see where you stack up, AND where you can make improvements.
That being said, in looking at this year’s Top Shop report, the assessment is divided up into three categories, Strengths, On Track, and Opportunities (which they are).
Only this year, our supposed opportunities, are not opportunities per se. Maybe for a conventional molder, but not as much for PlastiCert. We are very grateful to PT for the opportunity to shine and the feedback. But with all due respect, we say supposed opportunities because this benchmark survey still treats all molders as high volume is the holy grail. That the best situation you can get is to have a machine and one mold run for as long as you can if not indefinitely.
Our three “opportunities” for improvement from this year’s survey were:
Capacity Utilization – (defined as: how much of a molder’s total available capacity is being used. Low capacity utilization indicates the investment in some equipment is not generating income, which can lead to reduced profits.) PlastiCert PURPOSELY plans to HAVE AVAILABLE capacity. Of the 40-50 customers a year we service, less than 2% provide a forecast. The remainder simply contact us when they need parts, and it is usually an immediate need. Depending on resin availability, we meet these quick turnaround requests.
Machine Usage – (defined as: Higher machine usage, the less overhead cost they must associate with each unit of output created. This will allow a molder to offer products at lower prices than competitors and for a greater profit) For PlastiCert, the answer is the same as capacity with the additional caveat that PlastiCert AGGRESSIVELY works to reduce OTHER overhead components, so that machine usage is a non-factor in our pricing and works to our customers’ ADVANTAGE.
Resin Weight – (defined as Resin converted into parts directly reflects a molder’s output. Breaking it down on a per employee basis shows a molder’s efficiency in terms of people and parts.) Again, it is not about quantity but quality. PlastiCert processes engineered resins and composites that OEMS require for their demanding applications. We leave the high-volume simple stuff to the big guys that don’t like to think about what they are doing that much.
All three of these metrics favor the high volume, high speed, low complexity, customer profile that is so typical of the majority of the industry, just NOT representative of the business model that PlastiCert has implemented for the customers we service.
PlastiCert is there for the OEMs where their volumes are in the hundreds or thousands, rather than millions.
PlastiCert is there for the OEMs that need insert molding or overmolding in those same hundreds or thousands of quantities.
PlastiCert is there for those OEMS that need to use demanding engineered resins, like PEI, PEEK, PBT, ABS, Nylon, etc.
If you have a molder that lacks flexibility in your delivery timing and releases. If you are stuck ordering in quantities that you are not comfortable with, but the molder requires it. If you have ever had to inflate your quoting EAU numbers to get a molder to even quote your project, you need to give PlastiCert a call. You are our kind of customer and we are YOUR kind of molder.