Sunday, March 16, 2014

HARBEC Plastics Inc. Discusses Reshoring Success

Reshoring American Manufacturing – its comeback, its importance and its value
HARBEC Plastics Inc. was established in 1977 as a contract Tool and Die/general machine shop. Its founder, Bob Bechtold, understood that opportunities existed in that market for innovative solutions and problem solving. Today, through implementing state-of-the-art technologies and offering an array of manufacturing solutions in one U.S. location, HARBEC offers customers the opportunity to reshore their manufacturing. Founder Bob Bechtold discusses why he supports the reshoring trend:

The idea of having a homegrown economy that can support the goods that exist here is an important part of our country’s past, present, and future success—it’s a sustainable endeavor.  Our economy grew out of an era of industrialization, bringing us a great deal of new innovation and technology that helped spearhead the manufacturing sector in the U.S., and also afforded us the opportunity to invest in the sciences and technology. As a result, new skills and capabilities were created in the workforce, which in turn reinforces domestic employment and entrepreneurship.  For the U.S. economy to continue regaining ground and once again thrive, manufacturing needs to be a substantial piece of America’s financial pie.
From HARBEC’s perspective, the focus of the reshoring trend is not so much on price but that quality, speed to market, and working with trusted suppliers are the reasons some companies are choosing to reshore their tools and production. Bob Bechtold notes, “While outsourcing may have made economic sense at one time, today we are realizing there are a great deal of inefficiencies, waste, and financial loss. As a result many businesses are focusing their efforts on creating a more sustainable economy. At Harbec we do business globally and domestically, but we are very interested in U.S. based manufacturing—developing new technology to become more efficient while having a regional aspect to our work, and helping America to reinvent the notion of manufacturing as a key aspect of its economy”.
One of HARBEC’s customers, a manufacturer of a product used in the medical industry, recently reshored their manufacturing from China to the U.S. due to inconsistent quality. It was uncertain what material was being used from run to run, which had a huge impact on quality and consistency. Additionally, the customer had issues communicating necessary modifications, and the large inventories issues. HARBEC was able to work closely with them, eliminating many of the problems associated with offshore production and developing better tools that save them time and money in the long run.
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