Making industry-leading sliding sash windows as efficiently as possible is only part of the equation – ensuring a smooth transit to site is also vital, which is why Brighouse-based Quickslide has upgraded its fleet with five brand new DAF CF 280 18-tonne HGVs, and invested in a new dispatch area, including a new crane.
“We are proud of our 98% ‘on time, in full’ statistic, but we know we can improve on it,” explained Michael Connor, Quickslide’s Managing Director, “Our target is naturally 100% OTIF.
“No matter how good our products are, if it all falls apart during delivery, then it makes no difference how much we invest in machinery, stock, training and software; if we don’t get it out of the factory in a timely fashion, and transported to site in one piece, then we will – quite rightly – compromise our customer base.”
Quickslide has a reputation for looking after the needs of its staff, which extends to its drivers, who were heavily involved in choosing the new fleet.
“It makes sense that our drivers have a comfortable working environment with the best facilities to keep them as fresh and positive as possible. Ultimately, our drivers are, in a lot of cases the ambassadors for the business and the first Quickslide face that the customer will see, so it is critical that we do everything we can to keep the drivers helpful and customer focused,” Michael said. “Because of this we have also rebranded the vehicles, and it’s good to know that they’ll make an impact when they reach their destination.”
Quickslide went to DAF directly for the vehicles. “The service was second to none,” Michael said. “They really have delivered an excellent product, and they have been a great partner all the way through the process.”
The fleet also offers better fuel efficiency than the company’s previous vehicles, and the new wagons come with glass racks for ease of storage, along with pallet trucks to move products on and off the vehicle with relative ease.
The dispatch area and process have been totally overhauled to ensure the best transition between factory and customer. A new dispatch supervisor – Richard Beattie – has been appointed who has been given a specific goal of getting each vehicle loaded and away within 90 minutes which isn’t as easy as it sounds.
The new 4,000ft2 area is now the dispatch point for all three factories. All products will be prepared so all the driver has to do is help put the windows on the vehicles, ensure they are secured, and concentrate on delivering them safely.
To do this as quickly and safely as possible, Quickslide has invested in a £3,500 Demag crane, with a weight limit of 125kg, which offers a conveyor system that ensures the windows suffer no damage through non-manual handling. Furthermore, the process takes half the time as the original manual method.
“Lean manufacturing doesn’t stop at the factory gate,” Michael said. “We invest in all areas of the business so that our customers are guaranteed the best possible service from us.”