Go Lean and Grow: Superior Cabinets' 35-year Strategy in Cabinetry Production
Superior Cabinets

SASKATOON, SK - Overcoming a host of challenges to become one of Western Canada's leading cabinet manufacturers, Superior Cabinets marks 35 years in business with its anniversary in September.

Founded in 1980 by Charles Larre, the cabinet shop grew in size and scope until 2004 when a combination of events — the sudden death of Larre and economic recession — led to a 29 percent drop in sales in a matter of months, notes Shahan Fancy, marketing development manager. The 2008 hiring of a new executive team began a turnaround for the company, which continues today.

With an "intense corporate focus on experience, expansion and scale," Superior Cabinets shifted its production philosophy to lean manufacturing, a move which resulted in a significant reduction in waste and improved turnaround time at the 57,000-square-foot manufacturing facility. “The last time we produced 25 kitchens per day was in 2008, which took 400 people and 16 weeks to get it installed into the house. Today it takes 300 people and we install it in six weeks, guaranteed,” says President and CEO Scott Hodson.  

Changes also continue to be made to the company's product portfolio, which now includes 1,687 finish and door style combinations and the addition of the Fusion line.

WOOD 100

Superior Cabinets' Technological Advances

A dramatic transformation to improve productivity continues to spur sales at Superior Cabinets, which marks 35 years in business this year.

"Superior’s transformation is an example of how Canadian manufacturers are changing to become more customer driven and dynamic in the face of increasing competition at home and abroad," said Shahan Fancy, corporate sales development manager.

In October 2014 Superior Cabinets was named the winner of the first BDC Entrepreneurial Resiliency Award in recognition of its successful turnaround.
Moving forward, the company said, it will continue to redefine its customer experience, with a mandate to make a difference the community and for its clients. 

“It’s always hard to measure intangible things, such as experience.  Customer Confidence, retail sales growth, builder account capture, maintaining our profit margins, the steady flow of positive customer reviews/testimonials are what we are focused on,” says Hodson.  “We also have several KPI’s visible to our entire company in real time.  If we achieve these measures we are certain the experience our customer receives will be Superior.”

Superior Cabinets was featured in the 2015 WOOD 100 for its success strategies in technology integration.

For more information on Superior Cabinets, visit SuperiorCabinets.ca


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About the author
Karen Koenig | Editor

Karen M. Koenig has more than 30 years of experience in the woodworking industry, including visits to wood products manufacturing facilities throughout North America, Europe and Asia. As editor of special publications under the Woodworking Network brand, including the Red Book Best Practices resource guide and website, Karen’s responsibilities include writing, editing and coordinating of editorial content. She is also a contributor to FDMC and other Woodworking Network online and print media owned by CCI Media. She can be reached at [email protected]