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Summit took the initiative with their stocking program so we have material when we need it,” says the purchasing agent for a manufacturer of components for high-performance vehicles. Now, Summit supplies about 80 percent of the manufacturer’s bar material, which includes 4140 alloy and 4150 alloy bearing quality steel, as well as 8620 bearing steel. “Their program makes my job easier. I never have to worry about stock.”
“Summit Steel’s pricing is pretty reasonable,” [one] fabrication supervisor adds. “Right now, customer service stands outas we look at other [products] we need to make in the future.” He notes that because of the successful coupling in the past, this North American company is likely to work with Summit Steel on future endeavors. “We have a contact person who looks after us—he emails me with updates”.
“I think in manufacturing you have to continuously work on cost reduction ideas while improving production methods,” [one] North American plant manager says. “I believe Summit is on board with that. Summit has been quick to resolve any quality issues and that’s what you expect as a customer. Our customers expect the same from us.”
We invest significant time and effort in developing meaningful business relationships with our customers. Doing so allows us to help our customers solve general and specific manufacturing issues; by offering solutions to engineering, storage or other details involved in making a particular project viable and profitable, we become an integral part of the manufacturing process.
Ross Bushman, Summit Steel Corp
While there are other competitors in the area, [one] plant manager says that besides price point, which is “one key to stay competitive in the market,” Summit’s ability to deliver their products on time, while reacting and working together makes them an ideal choice for the company’s needs. “They’re a good vendor. They supply the material ordered and deliver it when it’s scheduled to deliver,” he says. “Those are keys to keeping manufacturing costs down and staying lean in a competitive market.”
Summit ensures inventory is ready with custom steel stocking programs tailored to each customer’s schedules. If a shop uses a certain size and it buys 40,000 pounds of it in the course of a month, the customer might not have room to take in a whole truckload of steel. In that case, Summit will buy the material and keep it warehoused for the customer at one of its locations in Cleveland; Chicago Heights, Ill.; or Houston, says Bushman. “When the customer needs another 5,000 pounds, we get it on a truck and ship it just-in-time,” he says. “They get the benefit of buying the larger quantity and having it available when they need it. It keeps their costs down, allows for more space in the shop and eliminates the need to warehouse anything.”