Industry Member Spotlight: Fleetwood Electronics
This article appeared in the Jan/Feb 2023 issue of MiMfg Magazine. Read the full issue and find past issues online.
In the manufacturing and electronics industry, quality assurance is essential for safety, proper functionality and efficiency of products and services. Providing the highest level of quality requires expertise in virtually every applicable job role, tool, technology program, industry and legal standard.
Fleetwood Electronics has been doing just that for over 65 years. Located in Holland, they are a full-service electronics manufacturing company with a legacy of providing expert design and engineering solutions. Fleetwood designs, builds, tests, assembles, integrates and enhances existing and original products. Its main area of focus is communications-related technology, such as Bluetooth, broadband, radio frequency solutions, IoT and app development and integration.
The Best Advice I Ever Got
Kill ’em with kindness.’ My mother taught it to me, and I’m teaching it to my children. I recommend it to everyone.
If I Wasn’t Doing This
I’d be working outside. Anything. As long as I’m not behind a desk.
“Fleetwood Electronics is unique in that we design and build our own products as well as design and build products for others,” says Jeremy Buckingham, National Sales Manager and Engineer for Fleetwood. “Working as both the designer and builder allows us more insight into product functionality and cost, ultimately creating more optimal solutions for businesses.”
No matter how complex an electrical project seems to be, Fleetwood may be able to uncover solutions that their manufacturing clients hadn’t considered, says Buckingham.
“A lot of things that are electrical are becoming electronic,” he says, adding that one of Fleetwood’s core areas of expertise is creating and optimizing products to lower manufacturing cost, especially connected products.
“Being in the electronics field for 17 years, I believe everyone should know how a printed circuit board works,” says Angel Chavez, Quality Assurance Manager. “Everything is electronic. Everyone eventually needs to change a battery and therefore touch a printed circuit board. Key FOBs, remote controls, hearing aid batteries, PC upgrades or repairs… eventually you will handle one.”
As quality assurance manager, Chavez ensures that Fleetwood’s processes meet IPC standards for electronics codes, development, design, purchasing, assembly and packaging. He also focuses on ensuring that the company continues to follow ISO standards in order to maintain its ISO 9001:2015 certification.
Best Part of My Job
The flexibility and stability. I work with a team that’s supportive of me both personally and professionally. That’s hard to find. I work with good people.
Last Book I Read
True Believer by Jack Carr. It’s a story of the redemption of one who’s reached rock bottom and found a way out.
Chavez and Buckingham remain especially proud of their Instant-Trace contact tracing solution, which their team created during the COVID-19 pandemic to identify exposure. It involves the use of a small, electronic, wearable device that calculates how long individuals are less than 6 feet away from each other. At the end of the day, the badge is scanned and the information uploaded onto a cloud-based dashboard. The program would then identify individuals who spent more than 15 minutes per day less than 6 feet apart, which is generally the definition of COVID-19 exposure according to the CDC. If one person later realizes that they have COVID-19, the system can therefore identify others who were exposed, allowing them to take measures to protect themselves.
Three Things I Can’t Live Without
Nothing except my kids. They are the only thing that matters. They are the future.
“The thing we’re most proud of is we saved lives,” Buckingham says. “We kept people separated and even kept people at work when they needed to be.”
Beyond the intrinsic benefits of designing solutions for manufacturing and electronics companies, Chavez says he is grateful for the company’s culture.
“You’re not just another face in the crowd. It’s not like that here,” Chavez says. “You know everybody and are friends with everybody.”
Fleetwood is an MMA Industry Member and has been an MMA member company since December 2021. Visit online: fleetwoodgroup.com.