The Case for Consolidation Construction: Enhancing Safety, Increasing Productivity and Streamlining Distribution
This article appeared in the May/June 2022 issue of MiMfg Magazine. Read the full issue and find past issues online.
How many times a day are you hearing or saying the phrase “supply chain?” Too many. As you continue to meet your customer’s needs, there are new options to meet your need for space as the pace of onshoring continues to accelerate. When considering your next “supply chain solution,” consolidation construction may be the answer with surprising benefits.
Protecting people and property, while remaining cost-effective, has always been prioritized in your operational plan. But an outdated building may put you at risk. In a recent project, Seal Bond Inc., an adhesives, sealants and coatings manufacturer in Norton Shores, consolidated three operational buildings into one new 100,000-square-foot facility. Engineered controls included storing raw material properly through designated control areas, including chemical spill containment, alternative fire protection measures, access control and building automation. This provided additional employee, environmental and asset protection.
In this same production redesign, Seal Bond was able to configure teams to work collaboratively in the consolidated space. As the industry faces staffing shortages in every classification, a new facility can offer your lines more eyes in less space. Imagine if the qualified team you have now could work together to operate, train and inspire the next generation of workers in one location, rather than managing multiple machines in multiple sites.
A new building can automate production by planning new utility resources for your equipment needs. This includes additional power capacity, high-pressure natural gas or a central boiler system. These resources support equipment needs, resulting in increased productivity and lower operating costs.
“Our new location allows us to streamline operations, providing greater quality and efficiency to our customers,” said Alex Carmichael, Vice President of Operations at Seal Bond. “With this new facility, we were able to design and plan to maximize production.”
As onshoring continues, your investment in securing your product line should pay off, not pay others. With the right design-build contractor, you can secure a site with closer access to supply routes, then engineer your building to increase distribution. Consider a custom-built location to consolidate storage, design distribution on your terms and made to control your variables, creating a better client experience. In another example of this winning approach, an international pharmaceutical manufacturer built new warehousing and distribution systems. Through the design-build process, the company was able to reconfigure their logistics process to expedite delivery, while simultaneously producing a building that kept product stabilized and more secure. The frustrations your team is encountering with moving product in and out from multiple locations could be resolved when you create the facility you need, rather than the facilities you have.
Depending on your pain points, consolidation construction could be the answer to your supply chain questions. Rather than having your team create another workaround, consider how your facility should work around your team. By constructing a building that is designed around higher safety, advanced manufacturing and efficient logistics, you’ve invested in more than a solution. You are ready for what’s next.
About the Author
With over 15 years in construction, Justin Monson’s role as Project Manager II for Grand Rapids-based Wolverine Building Group offers him daily opportunities to make buildings work for Michigan manufacturers. He may be reached at 616-949-3360.
Wolverine Building Group is an MMA Industry Member and has been an MMA member company since November 2019. Visit online: wolvgroup.com.