Lattimer increased sales and realized cost saving as a result of vertical integration and insourcing more operations. The company was able to achieve this by investing in its workforce.
The company’s fifty-six employees run a three-shift operation. Lattimer was sourcing a significant amount of work to vendors outside of NJ, and wanted to be able to produce the products in house. In order to do so, the company needed a more efficient workforce.
Lattimer has been at the forefront of design and manufacture of parts and accessories for the glass container industry. The company is a supplier of “Turn Key” services from design, casting or stock materials, custom CNC machining and component finish requirements for various equipment and accessories used in the glass industry. The company employees fifty-one people in its Vineland operation.
New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program, Inc. (NJMEP) was brought in to help with the process. First NJMEP conducted a Lean Assessment. The results indicated that efficiency could be achieved through teaching Lean concepts to Lattimer’s workforce.
Over a course of one year, NJMEP trained Lattimer’s employees in Value Stream mapping, conducted two sessions of Implementing 5S in the workplace, Lean application in the manufacturing process and held a Kaizen Event.
Training took place two-days a month and once the employees that participated completed their training, they would train their co-workers in the techniques they had learned. This training technique would build a strong sense of teamwork within the organization.
As a result, Lattimer’s employees became more efficient and were able to be more productive by working smarter not harder. This provided more time for them to engage in other value added activities thus positioning Lattimer to insource more operations.
When reporting on the impact the training had on its organization, Lattimer attributed the following to the project:
- Increased sales of $960,000
- 5 new hires
- $40,000 in cost savings
Steve Abernathy reported, “NJMEP, through the grant training, has been instrumental in promoting teamwork at Lattimer. The project has inspired a needed culture change, which has helped us to target and more closely achieve our productivity goals. We made capital improvements of $2M. The skills learned under the grant have helped us to capitalize on the investment.”