Recently one of Draper’s lesser-known efforts at improving customer experience received some nice kudos.

Draper was named 2015 Company of the Year by the Central Indiana Chapter of APICS, the leading professional organization for operations and supply chain management.

Draper's Jim Tilton (right) accepts the award from Rich Bayley, President of APICS Central Indiana.

Draper’s Jim Tilton (right) accepts the award from Rich Bayley, President of APICS Central Indiana.

“I was hired to help Draper develop upon and / or implement practices, procedures and processes related to improving the management of materials and inventory,” according to Jim Tilton, Director of Materials for Draper. “Part of that strategy is to establish a common, company-wide operational foundation ensuring employees a universal understanding of materials management roles and processes, and establishing a fundamental common language throughout all our business sectors.”

The key to success would be to focus on establishing proven best practices through industry-leading knowledge, education and certification. When it came to education, certification, deployment of standards and organizational design, we turned to APICS.

Incorporating APICS processes and definitions gets everybody speaking the same language, and that is key in bringing it all together.

According to Tilton, the APICS Certified in Production and Inventory Management, (CPIM), course is the industry standard, so Draper decided to use it to help equip the company for today’s fast-changing marketplace.

Employees from sales, production and inventory management, engineering, operations, supply chain management, procurement, materials management, finance and cost accounting, and manufacturing information systems (IT) have been taking part in the training. The reason for such widespread involvement in what some companies might see as a niche subject? Our customers.

“Increased efficiencies across organizational operations, the ability to respond more quickly to shifting demands, improved forecasting and planning, and lower inventory investments will help ensure that the supply chain is effective in meeting the needs of our customers while maintaining required delivery and inventory goals,” Tilton points out. “This will lead to improved customer satisfaction levels, employee satisfaction, and leaner operations at Draper—a win-win for everybody.”

“Draper is receiving this award in recognition of the emphasis it has placed on training employees this year,” according to Rich Bayley, President of APICS Central Indiana. To date nearly 60 employees have attended, or are currently enrolled in, supply chain and operations management training classes, including production, inventory, materials management, purchasing and logistics. “Students of this program have the opportunity to become a professional CPIM. CPIM is a professional certification signifying the individual is Certified in Production and Inventory Management.”

According to a release from APICS, the group is a global professional association dedicated to promoting the principles of operations and supply chain management through research and education.

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