Boston, Massachusetts – Commemorating the 45th anniversary, ResTech Plastic Molding LLC (RPM) is looking back at what helped it sustain American manufacturing growth during the last 45 years.
“For decades, ResTech Plastic Molding has been driven by a desire to continuously improve quality and service, rather than the offshoring model, outsourcing services and personnel overseas,” said George E. Danis, CEO of ResTech Plastic Molding. “We never reconsidered our ‘Made in America’ manufacturing strategy and macroeconomics with the draw to move some of operations overseas. Unlike other companies, we continued to adapt to what our new and current customers were demanding: a long-term perspective to provide low-cost manufacturing.”
First American manufacturing company
In 1968, Danis successfully launched his first American manufacturing company to serve the state of Massachusetts emerging high-tech industries with electronic manufacturing services. Every company that they dealt with had its own service, quality, and supplier requirements. They quickly learned that managing the customer’s drawings, quality paperwork, and logistics was just as demanding as managing production of the product itself. To meet growing customer demand, they relocated to Hudson, MA, into an 80,000ft2 manufacturing campus with expansion plans for Cleanroom facilities. The facility was upgraded and includes a climate controlled tool room and tool storage space. ResTech started designing and making its own tools on-site with a preventative maintenance program, guaranteeing the life of all its tooling projects.
Integrated vertical manufacturing
Danis launched Plastic Molding Mfg. Inc., (PMM) a custom injection molder and single source manufacturing company for molded plastic components, plastic design, and assemblies in 1982. At that time, he wanted to solve problems no one was addressing: an all-inclusive local partner, shortening the time-to market and lowering costs.
“Our integrated manufacturing and product development model solved this problem with a focus on small and medium size OEMs, brought together Box-Build capabilities, PCB assembly and mechanical services and engineering, all under ‘one roof’,” said Danis.
During the SARS epidemic, there was urgency for inexpensive, non-hospital testing for the virus. They stepped-up to the challenge when this medical equipment leader called upon PMM to meet the worldwide demand, ‘revved up’ production and shipped units directly to Asian logistic centers on-time for field testing and distribution. This durable, easy-to-use diagnostic product is designed for critical patient care by healthcare professionals who require hospital-grade quality in non-hospital settings.
Enterprise Resource Planning system
PMM was doing business nationally, with several Fortune 500 companies who conducted site audits. That year, the company decided to make a critical decision replacing the dated computer program designed for accounting and billing, but not managing supply chain or administering quality procedures. They knew they needed a better quality system and a better management system. In 1999, ResTech migrated all of its data into a single ERP application that would manage all aspects of its business: the solution integrates supply chain management, accounting, inventory, and production.
“We continued to adapt our Made in America manufacturing strategy,” said Danis. “Whether or not we won their job, we knew we needed a new system and, to implement additional best practices to provide low-cost manufacturing.”
The company acquired a Clinton-based plastic injection molder company and merged with PMM. The new combined entity in 2010, re-branded and became
ResTech Plastic Molding, operating a total of 28 injection molding machines with contracts in medical, industrial, defense, automotive and food service industries. A majority of new customers, domestic OEMs who offshored work and well-paying jobs, were spending more time managing multiple suppliers and long-distance relationships. Their sense of urgency shifted from quality intensive due to constantly re-evaluating sourcing and costs of overseas production. They found ResTech’s engineering and manufacturing systems yielded some promising results: reducing total cost of production, return to localized sourcing with the ability to reshore manufacturing back to the USA: they could make their products here, in New England.
Participation in statewide manufacturing program
Danis joined Building Bridges to Growth: A Roadmap for Advanced Manufacturing in Massachusetts in 2011. Launched by Governor Deval Patrick, the initiative is an ambitious plan designed to revitalize and enhance the competitiveness of the manufacturing industry. That same year, Massachusetts State Senator Jamie Eldridge (in picture, center) toured the Hudson manufacturing campus and said, “Skilled manufacturing is a thriving industry in Massachusetts thanks to companies like ResTech Plastic Molding. To keep it that way, we need to increase our investments in workforce development and building our infrastructure are the best things we can do to grow our economy over the long run. I’m committed to making sure these are the economic priorities of our Commonwealth.”
Enhanced quality system
The company completed a new ISO Class 8 100,000 Cleanroom with 6 JSW Electric Molding Machines with clamping forces of 40 to 120 tons.
“We focus on growth and excellence, but the only people who can do it are the employees. And to get the results you need to give them the tools, and the training program is one of them,” said Danis.
Usually a book or paper is prepared to help with a job, but ResTech wanted to go further and installed a video system on machines that details what to watch for and how to handle a job. The Mobile Automated Trainer (in picture, right) is installed company-wide. The process is tightly controlled: various departments and the customer have to sign-off before it is implemented and, shows what finished products look like and even how to pack them.
Adding two-shot molding technology
Perceptive companies closely follow the total cost of ownership to reevaluate offshoring vs. reshoring. ResTech has been focused on a new turnkey approach, providing a customer-driven single-source solution accelerating low-cost manufacturing for its customers and to keep them from offshoring. In January 2014, ResTech acquired Northeast Mold & Plastics, adding Two-Shot molding technology to its portfolio.
Danis said, “The real payoff of two-shot plastic injection molding of thermoplastic materials is an economic one: parts of two different materials can be fabricated with the speed, efficiency, and economy of thermoplastic processing. This eliminates the labor-intensive secondary operations used for so many years and replaces them with high-speed automated operations, to yield a more consistent, higher quality fabricated part at a significantly lower cost.”
Leading the future in plastic molding technologies
Today’s ResTech Plastic Molding, is a leading Northeastern United States injection molder and a single source manufacturing company, and employs more than 200 people in Massachusetts and Connecticut. Danis said sales have been steadily rising 15% over the last three years and expects the same this year. The company is also getting a boost from work coming back from China, gaining 2 projects that been manufactured overseas. Although focused on the future, ResTech Plastics Molding tries not to forget how far it has come in 45 years.
“For a company like ours to grow in an increasingly competitive global economy, the need for exceptional people is a given,” said Danis. “However, having first rate quality systems and technology will be more critical.”
Source: ResTech Plastic Molding LLC