Since beginning their work with GaMEP, Poly Tech Industries has:
- Increased and retained sales of over $750,000, by becoming ISO 9001 certified, allowing them to remain a preferred vendor for their largest client.
- Gained a better understanding of what it costs to run their Water Jet Machine through the TPM Cohort training, leading to a cost savings of $5,000.
- Reduced shipping errors by creating a process and maintaining corrective action on product and delivery accuracy.
- Applied best practices learned in the TPM cohort to other machines in their plant, reducing quality problems due to equipment issues.
Poly Tech Industries, in Monticello, Georgia was founded in 1975, and is a second generation, family-owned manufacturing business that is committed to providing innovative and long-lasting solutions to the agricultural industry. Their core business consists of plastic components that protect and enhance agricultural equipment performance. They hold multiple patents, including the industry’s first combine skid, and one for their proprietary “Living Hinge” design used on tens of thousands of grain headers worldwide.
The majority of business for Poly Tech Industries is seasonal based on the industry it serves – agriculture. Jimmy Rabitsch, chief executive officer, knew he needed to expand outside of their niche market and seek opportunities that could grow the company and even out revenue throughout the year. So he contacted the Georgia Manufacturing Extension Partnership (GaMEP) at Georgia Tech, who was in the process of helping Rabitsch and his team implement an ISO 9001 quality management system. Bill Nusbaum, GaMEP’s Northeast region manager, suggested a Machine Shop Assessment, so that Rabitsch could gain a fresh, outsider perspective in evaluating the company and identifying new ways to grow the business.
Nusbaum and Bob Wray, project manager, did the assessment and provided the Poly Tech team with a SWOT analysis, on the company’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. As a result of the assessment, a recommendation was made to offset Poly Tech’s months of heavy production and capitalize on their excess capacity for the remainder of the year. The plan consisted of:
- Connecting Poly Tech with the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Georgia to identify new, non-competitive companies, in different countries, that could use their products. By focusing on companies in the Southern Hemisphere, that have the polar opposite offseason as Poly Tech, the team would be able to serve this new client base and expand their reach.
- Next, the team recognized an opportunity to improve their shipping accuracy. In response to this, Poly Tech created a process, that was written into their management plan, to increase the accuracy and completion of shipments. Before any products are packed in a box, each piece is laid out on a table and photographed. This captures the accuracy of the shipment before it leaves the plant so that Poly Tech has proof of what was shipped. They can now keep up with corrective actions to evaluate where errors occurred, reducing the time it takes to resolve delivery issues, and keep their clients’ trust intact.
- Finally, Poly Tech enrolled in GaMEP’s first virtual Total Productive Maintenance Cohort (TPM), a 12-week program designed to address equipment breakdowns. The training covered the steps to implement TPM for a select piece of equipment, in this case Poly Tech’s Water Jet Machine, which very accurately cuts stainless steel to support their patented plastic parts. As a result, Poly Tech can now determine the true cost of running this machine, better plan for maintenance downtime, thus producing a cost savings for customers as they are able to provide more accurate client quotes.