Custom Window, Door and Millworks, Salmon Arm, BC

Implementing new processes and equipment is never an easy task – particularly when you are a small manufacturer with limited access to capital and the market for your products is in turmoil. For George Gibson of Custom Window, Door and Millworks in Salmon Arm, B.C., continually pushing for production efficiencies and cost savings is a never-ending battle.

The company has been producing high-end wood doors and windows for over 25 years. Its products are well known throughout North America and Asia for their quality and workmanship and have been featured in some of the finest buildings around the world.

George realized that installing new equipment, fine-tuning the manufacturing processes, and bringing his employees up to speed on the latest techniques was the “only way to keep competitive in the world market”.

To shorten the learning curve and take full advantage of the technical expertise available, George brought in Elias Mucha, an Industry Advisor from FPInnovations’s Western Division. After examining the operation, Elias identified key areas where significant cost savings and quality improvements could be achieved. Together with the employees, Elias developed and implemented a plan that saw the company shorten the setup time for equipment, increase the production volume, improve the quality of its products and reduce the amount of raw materials it uses. The results were very satisfying.

“Without the help of Elias, we would have missed out on a fabulous opportunity to get better at what we do. I do not know of any business that can honestly say that they cannot learn from others” George said.

Finding new ways to improve manufacturing and reduce costs was just what Custom Window, Door and Millworks needed to move to the next level.