Case Study: Mold Maintenance & Repair

Certified Mold Maintenance System Completes Service Offerings


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Previously, Alliance Specialties was a successful company providing its customers with an array of services comprising mold finishing and polishing including micropolishing, plus laser welding, and chrome and nickel plating. One could say their lineup was fairly comprehensive, but this company’s ownership felt there was something more they could be doing to offer a more complete solution. So they contacted ToolingDocs to become a Certified Maintenance Provider (CMP).

“We needed to establish an organized mold maintenance system to round out our services offering,” explains Alliance Vice President John Demakis. “We knew ToolingDocs had the mechanisms in place to help us do that—to develop the best way to begin and end, efficiently and effectively, the process of mold maintenance.”

“Alliance saw the value in improving their shop from what it was a couple of years ago,” says ToolingDocs’ Global Assessment Manager Randy Winton. “They saw the opportunity to expand their business with major customers that need their molds serviced. They knew, in order to do that, they needed to have a state-of-the-art facility, which they worked through and have accomplished with their new shop.”

“Everyone enjoyed working with the ToolingDocs team, even though at first nobody thought they would learn anything,” Demakis relates. “They didn’t see what I was trying to accomplish by earning this certification until they set foot in the ToolingDocs Maintenance Center. Then they said, ‘Now we understand what we’re trying to do.’”

“I had an attitude when I walked into ToolingDocs for training—I thought to myself ‘I’m a former shop owner who’s been doing this for 37 years so what can they possibly teach me?’” says Mark Camera, who is the toolroom foreman at Alliance. “I don’t have that attitude anymore. These are very knowledgeable guys. I left feeling good about the training and understanding how the ToolingDocs system helps us provide an advantage for our customers.”

“We hear that a lot,” Winton explains. “Every so often a company will send a veteran moldmaker for training and that moldmaker will walk in thinking it’s going to be a waste of time. But by the end of the first day with us there is a definite shift in perception—a light bulb goes on and they are glad they came.”
“Several of our customers have also gone through ToolingDocs training and recommended that we do it as well, so that we’ll all be on the same page and can work together at the same level,” Demakis says. “We actually communicate better with them as a result because we’re all on board with systemized maintenance.”

Winton explains the process Alliance followed to become a CMP: “After an initial assessment to see where the opportunities to improve efficiencies are, they followed an action plan to make changes. Then they were scored and ranked, and Alliance easily qualified to our requirements. Then they underwent the required training. Mark Camera took both the Level 2 Mold Repair Certification and the Managers Certification classes. They are able to collect and utilize the required information using, in this case, the MoldTrax software program as their database. They have all the necessary systems in place and have worked hard to implement those practices they were taught, and their shop has been set up using many of our recommendations for best utilization of the floor space. Alliance has fully embraced ToolingDocs’ mold maintenance standards and principles; and they are doing very well with it.”

“The difference in our shop is like night and day,” says Camera, “People see a modern shop set up the way ToolingDocs instructed us and it looks professional and functional. Already it has helped us to win new customers.”

“It made sense to provide a complete mold maintenance solution by getting our shop up to ToolingDocs standards, utilizing MoldTrax and earning the CMP certification. Now, when customers get their molds back, they are ready to go right back into production,” says Demakis.

“Working within a system allows us to learn specific production and maintenance characteristics of each of our customers’ molds faster and more accurately, which translates to better running molds through more efficient and effective maintenance.”

He adds, “This is working out just the way we wanted it to. It took a little while to get there, but we did and we’re glad. This CMP certification also gives us credibility because it tells the customer we have logical, efficient systems in place to get the job done for them the way it should be.”