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Operational Excellence

Operational improvements

There are a variety of tools that our dedicated operational experts employ while working with our companies. Whether employing lean, Six Sigma, sales and operations planning, materials management, quality control, value engineering, or other operational methods, we have the people, expertise, and experience to support management.

“Harbour Group’s experience, expertise and resources precluded the need for third party business consultants to be hired for product rationalization and plant consolidation projects. Harbour professionals have been through these processes many times and their guidance was invaluable.”

– Dean Panettieri, VP Operations, Auto Meter Products, Inc.

“The Harbour Group team is made up of operators – they don’t just accumulate companies, they have the experience and know-how to dig deep into the business to drive improvements.”

– Dominic Deller, Managing Director, Lincoln Industrial Corporation

“It is impossible for someone who has not been part of the Harbour Group family to fully appreciate the advantages of being associated with Harbour Group. Harbour Group brings their experience across hundreds of businesses to help solve problems and make step-change improvements to strengthen the business. This is a huge advantage for management and it helped us to rise above our competition.”

– Steve Harriott, President, Watchfire

“One of the things I always appreciated is that Harbour Group professionals have real manufacturing and operations experience. That was a huge help through our ownership – their ability to really understand the complexities of what we’re trying to do. Because Harbour Group professionals have done it and lived it before, they were able to help us with business processes to make sure we were running efficiently and had the resources to help support it. It was certainly a value Harbour Group brought to the relationship.”

– Steve Shotwell, President, SloanLED

Global sourcing

Harbour Group has full-time, dedicated procurement teams on the ground in China and India. We have pre-qualified vendors in numerous raw materials, components, packaging, and other products and capabilities. Our team supports our companies by actively identifying new vendors and, just as importantly, monitoring the ongoing quality of existing suppliers. Our team understands the cultures, languages, and subtle nuances required to successfully navigate the business environment in each country.

“We frequently use the Harbour Group team in Asia to help us source new products. They find and vet suppliers, check up on their progress, help to expedite purchase orders when needed and mediate quality issues. All of these require on-the-ground resources which we do not have internally.”

– Bob Edgcomb, Materials Manager, AMI Entertainment Network, LLC

“In a small organization like ours we have limited resources. Harbour Group brings a range of expertise usually found in big companies. They also bring education and tools that take our existing team to the next level. For example the Harbour sourcing team has worked very closely with our engineering and operations teams. We’ve adopted many of the tools and templates they recommended. What they’ve helped us accomplish allows us to stay competitive on existing products as well as recent new product launches.”

– Dan Zsiga, VP and General Manager, ONICON Incorporated

“Harbour Group’s global sourcing office has been very helpful to us. Together we developed a task force initiative in both Shanghai and India to find new suppliers. They have performed audits, inspections, and ultimately qualified new suppliers on our behalf.”

– Randy Hrdlicka, Purchasing Manager, Lindstrom, LLC

Metrics-based decision making, supported by business system optimization

Many companies have robust systems, but it is often difficult to transform the data these systems capture into actionable information. We help management use output from ERP, CRM, material planning, and inventory systems to more effectively serve the customer, reduce costs, optimize pricing, improve discipline, and drive margin improvement.

“One of the biggest differences I have seen in working with Harbour Group is that I understand our business better today. The way Harbour Group manages data and brings it to life to make better decisions in the business makes a significant impact.”

– Rick English, Vice President, Lindstrom

“Harbour Group guided us to new IT solutions to evaluate, understand and manage our 3,000+ SKUs. The ERP system modules we had were not being utilized prior to Harbour Group’s ownership. We were able to gain the benefit of a fully integrated system with their help.”

– Dean Panettieri, VP of Operations, Auto Meter Products, Inc.

“Harbour Group’s expertise took us a long way in helping to reduce our inventory. We had a set of formulas that were not very advanced and Harbour made them much more sophisticated. In a variable demand business with many SKUs, it is critical to keep inventory levels down while not compromising on service to the customer.”

– Greg Gottlieb, President, Hardware Resources / Top Knobs

Environmental, Health & Safety

By maintaining our own in-house EH&S expertise, we bring a unique ability to complete acquisitions and look at these issues from a perspective that combines scientific knowledge, regulatory understanding, and business experience to make the best decisions for all parties. The safety of our employees and the communities in which we operate is paramount, and we work diligently to identify and pursue the best solution possible.

“It is difficult for a small company to be up to date on every nuance of environmental rules and regulations. In diligence, Harbour Group made some observations about our EHS practices and was able to clearly explain what they saw and recommend new procedures that enabled us to improve our EHS practices.”

– Dan Zsiga, VP and General Manager, ONICON Incorporated