Sometimes the need for change is a matter of life and death
Our client on this assignment was a mid-size family-owned manufacturing company that was a contract manufacturer for a large, international brewery for the manufacture of a special adhesive used on beer bottle stickers. This lucrative contract accounted for 78% of the client's business, and they had held on to the contract for over six eyars.
The adhesive that the client manufactured was particularly important for the brewery since consumers had a special connection with their preferred beer brands. Without the sticker on the beer bottle, at least three beer brands looked the same and could not be distinguished. When the beers were refrigerated or otherwise got wet, some of the stickers fell off, which made it difficult to sell the unlabeled beer. This, led to an increase in returned stock and the costs associated with returned goods, which the brewer was not happy with. The only way our client was going to hold on to this one highly lucrative contract was to enter strict quality assurance guarantees with the brewer.
In addition to entering the stringent quality assurance guarantees that the brewery required, our client was also required by the brewer to establish a reliable, documented Quality Management System (QMS) that would bring down the product failure rate to an acceptable level. The client did not see this requirement coming, given especially how long he had maintained the contract with the brewer. In addition to obtaining a certified quality management system, the brewer required client to variously benchmark production in order that as close to zero product failure-rate was obtained.
We worked with CLIENT to develop and submit an application for a business development loan from an international funding agency. This was the first step. The next step was to roll out the quality management process, which entailed the following, among others:
1. Mapping of the client's supply-chain relationships and their implications on quality
2. Internal quality audit
3. Development of quality standards
4. Introduction of quality management tools
5. Training of the client's employees on quality
6. Benchmarking of internal production processes to obtain process and output consistency
The client was able to achieve the quality targets that brewer had set for them, and within the time given, as a condition for continued engagement. The client also went on to repay the business development facility that we used to obtain the quality management system.
In furtherance of what was achieved on this assignment, the client went on to obtained ISO 9001 certification.