What We Heard
Since December 2012, we have had the pleasure of participating in 34 meetings with 128 of our customers during our Listening Tours to hear first hand what they think about our work. We are honored to share that a majority of the feedback we heard was positive.
Based on what they told us, our relationships with them are both strong and mutually beneficial. Virtually everyone we spoke with praised us for our good work, but we still have things to improve upon.
Not surprisingly, the top three challenges our customers face include:
1. Cost reduction
2. Quality product
3. Skilled workforce shortage
So how can we help them reduce cost, make a better product, and develop their workforce skills? Talk with them and discuss their concerns and ways we can best help. Having these conversations is crucial to knowing exactly what our customers think. This is when we learn about their products, pressures and preferences. Most importantly, we learn about the areas where we need to improve and what new services they wish we offered.
We are happy to share that nearly two-thirds of those we met with told us we offer better service and greater value than our competitors.
Our biggest area of improvement, however, is lead-time. Of the 34 customers visited, 15 stated they would like our lead-time to be within two weeks. As our service offerings grow, along with the processes we incorporate into our customers' final components, reducing lead-time will be a challenge. But a challenge we are definitely up to because of our goal to implement Quick Response Manufacturing (QRM) within all of our facilities in 2014.
Now that we know what our customers are experiencing, it is time to take action. The following three steps will help us reap the full value of our Listening Tour meetings and continue being the people that make a difference.
- We will host free cost reduction educational seminars on-site at our customers' facilities or at a central location of their choosing.
- We will create a cost reduction checklist for our staff to follow so we do everything possible to help lower our customers' costs.
- We will share specific ways companies can address their quality and skilled workforce shortage issues.