Located in Alliance, Ohio, Coastal Pet Products, Inc. is a family-owned manufacturer of pet products that include collars, leashes, harnesses, car safety restraints, and toys. Started nearly 50 years ago with only $400 in the basement of a pet shop, Coastal Pet Products has become the fourth largest employer in Stark County with over 600 employees. Their state-of-the-art facility allows them to be the quality leader in custom pet products and customer service.
Leadership within Coastal Pet Products recognized the need for improving employee engagement and culture to drive revenue. With less than one employee idea or suggestion on a monthly basis, Coastal Pet was having difficulties with continuous improvement and growth as well as turnover. After noting these trends. the company contacted MAGNET for assistance.
MAGNET first held strategic sessions with top management to outline a case for change and deliver an organization-wide communication regarding company sales and current customer initiatives. Consultants later led a series of Lean manufacturing workshops and training sessions to help implement a system for applying Kaizen principles to the shop floor and other parts of the company. Session facilitators established a process for future continuous improvement, which led to the hiring of an industrial engineer who serves as a Lean Process Manager. In addition, MAGNET set cultural changes in motion to reduce employee turnover and increase engagement.
Outcome and Impact
Coastal Pet now receives and processes over seven employee suggestions per week and continues to build upon communication established through their work with MAGNET. As a result of Lean manufacturing, the company was also able to reshore an entire product line that had been previously outsourced to international countries. Other successes include increased sales, a 10 percent reduction in turnover, and considerable savings in labor costs.
“I would highly recommend MAGNET to companies looking to improve employee engagement and innovate products,” said Director of Operations Steve Caruso. “The Kaizen process training was a huge success and allowed us to greatly improve productivity … MAGNET was able to come in, establish a Lean innovation process, and allow us to operate self-sustainably afterward. Working with them has been a positive experience.”