|Panel Processing Inc. has 10 manufacturing facilities in six locations, including Alpena, Holland and Coldwater, MI; Merrillville, IN; Jacksonville, TX; and Eufaula, AL, with a total of 850,000 square feet of manufacturing and warehouse space. The company has created redundancies throughout its various facilities to maintain short lead times during peak periods.|
|Panel Processing Inc.
Founded in 1971, Panel Processing began as an intermediate processor of hardboard. With the boom of mass merchandising, the company expanded into other areas. Today, the company has grown to six locations with 10 plants.
1. The company has built a reputation of putting customer service above everything else.
2. Redundancies are set within the company's manufacturing capabilities, enabling large rollouts to be completed quickly without affecting small- to medium-sized orders.
3. Panel Processing utilizes the latest technology to maximize productivity, decrease lead times and maintain its standard of quality.
The company's dedication to customer service âIsn't written in a mission statement,â says Kelsey. âThat's not to say that you can write a mission statement and assume that your customers are going to believe that. You have to do it. It's a reputation that we built, we're proud of it and there's a dedication to make sure that it continues.â
Panel Processing Inc. is able to maintain that reputation, in part, because of redundancies that are purposefully built into the system.
Across its many manufacturing facilities, one will find some of the same processes and equipment at Panel Processing. These redundancies are built into the system to give the company more flexibility during its peak periods and complete large projects quickly. Panel Processing Inc. completes and ships most jobs within two weeks, according to Empfield.
âWe have multiple locations with redundant capabilities,â says Brown. âThis way, we have flat capacity in certain machine center operations and certain operational areas, so when we hit peak periods we're still able to take care of our customers' needs.â
For instance, each plant in the company has two to four punch presses, made by South Bend, and two to three Schelling panel saws.
âIf a customer comes in with a very large rollout that needs to be done in a short amount of time, we can actually produce the job in several plants simultaneously, as opposed to relying on one location and trying to dedicate all of our time to one job,â remarks Empfield. âWe can take care of a big customer when they have the need, while at the same time, we're still taking care of the small- and medium-sized customers.â
Depending on the size and nature of the order, Panel Processing can complete several hundred jobs per month. The redundancies help the manufacturing process remain flexible, Empfield says.
Additionally, each plant will normally stock about 3 million square feet of board in various thicknesses, widths and types of materials.
âWe stock a huge amount of board so that we can react quickly when orders come in,â says Empfield.
âWe will not get into a situation where we get sold out,â adds Brown. âWe've always looked at how we take care of our customers by expanding our capacities and making sure that we have enough capacity to take care of peak periods.â
To ensure the company not only has the capacity to meet its customers
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