02/25/2020

Being Unique in a Commoditized World

Our Three Uniques

Below are what we call “Our Three Uniques”. We have invested a substantial amount of time not only defining what makes us unique, but then investing time and resources into continually improving those things that make us unique. In essence, becoming unique…er.

High Turn:

High Turn is our term for welding fixtures and other engineering projects delivered faster, resulting in customers’ overall time to market shortened. We use robust systems and our proven “high-velocity” process to make this happen.

Time to market is critical. We live in a fast-paced culture, where expectations are continually increasing, and customer loyalty is hard to find. In short, if you can’t offer your product when the customer needs it (or perceives they need it), they will have no problem finding an alternative.

Partnering with suppliers who focus on shrinking lead-times and creating a high velocity environment is critical. Having no sense of urgency might be okay for a government organization with no competition, but in the open marketplace you need to get your product to the marketplace quickly in order to be competitive.

Fixtures and tooling play a major role in the manufacturing process and having a reliable tooling supplier that can accommodate projects with short lead-times is critical to getting products to market quickly. We have spent the last 20 years creating and improving a comprehensive process along with systems to continually increase the velocity of tooling projects throughout the entire project process, not just the design and build portions.

As manufacturers, we tend to put a tremendous amount of emphasis on a lean and efficient manufacturing process. Define and control the process, eliminate waste, increase efficiencies, etc. These are all good things and should be addressed continually. However, what about all the processes that are not part of the manufacturing process?

Creating a company and culture of High Turn also means continually addressing issues outside the manufacturing process as well. How do we eliminate waste and inefficiencies in the quoting process? What’s the most efficient process for creating a BOM and placing PO’s? How do we automate administrative processes? Are there waste or unnecessary steps in our process? By being intentional about also improving these processes, we can continually shrink overall project timelines from the preliminary conceptual stage all the way through commissioning on the manufacturing floor.

High Talent:

Our High Talent staff leverage their industry experience to create innovative solutions to your complex tooling and manufacturing problems.

Quality Tool Service, Inc. has been designing and building tooling for over 20 years, starting with stamping dies then pivoting into fixtures, with a core focus on weld fixtures over the last 10 years. Over that time, we still have team members that have been with us since the beginning, and a lot of team members have been with us over a decade. We have a company of High Talent because we attract good people and treat them like capable adults who are a valuable part of the team.

The trick is to balance past experience and know-how with innovation and problem solving. Just having an experienced team doesn’t create an advantage. In fact, it can often create a large disadvantage if the mindset of “this is the way we have always done it” sets in. High Talent means having a team with industry experience as a foundation for creative and innovative ideas. Solving today’s problems, not yesterday’s problems.

The advancement of technology in manufacturing has been nothing short of amazing. From fiber lasers to collaborative robots to additive manufacturing, the manufacturing landscape is changing quickly. However, along with the rapid changes has been increasing demands in the manufacturing process. Having partnerships with companies in your supply chain that have teams in place with industry experience is critical to success.

This can be especially true with in-house manufacturing and tool rooms. Having an in-house tool room to build tooling obviously has advantages. However, if the mindset of “this is the way we have always done it” is the prevailing moto, you may find your manufacturing starting to become less and less competitive. Having a partnership with a tooling supplier with both industry experience and a mindset of innovation can help keep your manufacturing processes competitive in the long term.

All this equates to an overall lower Total Cost:

Our tooling makes you money by giving you shorter lead-times, less production scrap and quality issues, more throughput in manufacturing, and a tool that lasts your complete product life cycle. In short, it keeps your production line up and running, building value by allow your project to run earlier and eliminating downtime.

Our core strategy and goal is not to be the cheapest fixture supplier in the marketplace. There is a huge difference between price versus cost. The cheapest price will often cost you the largest amount. Time to market, labor inefficiencies and downtime, scrap, machine burden and overheads, these are all substantial costs in manufacturing. If the only focus is the price of the fixtures, the cost can end up being several times what you paid for the tooling.

That doesn’t even start to consider quality issues creating costs and compromising brand integrity. Bottom line is, well designed and quality-built fixtures should be an asset, putting money into your pocket. If your tooling is viewed as an expense that’s a mistake. If it becomes a liability, that’s really a mistake. You don’t want your fixtures, or any investment into your company, costing more than the price you paid.

We feel that continually focusing on these three uniques in unison allows us to serve our customers better than anyone else. We are continually improving how we bring High Turn, High Touch, and High Talent to the marketplace as we focus on driving down our customer’s total manufacturing costs.

If your fixtures and tooling have become more of a liability than an asset, we would be happy to have a conversation on how we can help. If you are looking for a fixture supplier with High Turn, High Touch, and High Talent contact us today. We would appreciate the opportunity to demonstrate what makes us unique.

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