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The challenge of maintaining production during a factory relocation

Part 1: Spring 2014

We’re highly experienced machinery movers at REM Engineering, and we use the knowledge we’ve built up to make relocations happen smoothly and with the minimum disruption for our clients.

This is the first part of a three-part case study looking at a major factory relocation we undertook – one that presented a number of logistical issues. We’ll post parts 2 and 3 as the project progresses.

Central Tin Containers is a major manufacturer of round tinplate containers. Due to compulsory purchase of its premises in central Liverpool by Liverpool City Council, the company was required to move, and approached us to work as principal contractors on the factory relocation. With five manufacturing lines and one printing line, we knew it would be logistically challenging to relocate the factory while maintaining continuity of service for our client’s customers – and this is where our experience as machinery movers really came into its own.

A flexible approach

The original timescale Central Tin Containers were given was that they had to relocate by New Year 2014, so we had our teams on standby to work over the Christmas period.

However, due to circumstances beyond Central Tin Containers’ control, this timeframe was pushed back, with an eventual start date to new premises in Speke, Liverpool in mid-April 2014. At REM, we pride ourselves on never letting clients down. As experienced machinery movers, we understand the importance of maintaining a flexible approach to re-allocating our resources when necessary, and we’ve designed our systems with this in mind. So, at no extra cost to the client, we rescheduled the work.

Our systems are also set up to react fast when we need to – and within two weeks of being given the go-ahead– having been kept informed throughout by our client – we had the workforce we needed in place and ready for the factory relocation.

Keeping downtime to a minimum

Maintaining an excellent service to customers is key for any organisation and we planned the factory relocation to help Central Tin Containers achieve this continuity of service and to fit in with the company’s production schedules. The lines were to be removed one by one, so that as much manufacturing capability as possible could be retained throughout the process.

That required some very complicated scheduling and co-ordination to take place. However, in consultation with our client, we were able to use our experience as machinery movers to create a practical and achievable plan.

Added value

We pride ourselves on providing an added value service – and we were able to use our experience to make practical suggestions to our client. For example, we recommended that, for the new factory, they use aluminium pipework rather than the traditional galvanized product. We knew this would provide greater flexibility both during the machine installation and going forward in terms of being able to tap into aluminium pipework without de-constructing it.

Our approach at a glance

  • Flexibility is key in any factory relocation. In this project, we were able to reschedule our work at short notice to allow for an unexpected delay.
  • As machinery movers, we understand that continuity of service to a company’s own customers is paramount and we work to assist with this as much as possible.

Coming soon…

In the next installment of this case study, we’ll look at how the factory relocation shaped up and the challenges faced by the team of machinery movers.

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