WINDMILL BLOG - MARCH 2017
Windmill were recently reassessed to the BRC Global Standard for Packaging & Packaging Materials by QAIC & are pleased to announce an AA pass following the audit in March.
BRC double A grades are relatively uncommon in the label game and to have achieved this status makes us very proud. A lot of hard work goes into BRC behind the scenes at Windmill and thanks are due to Ian Shaw and Steven Mobbs for their time & effort.
BRC accreditation forms the bedrock for all our quality & hygiene systems and has enabled us to approach the market confident in the overall package we offer our label customers.
Tape and label business continues to improve in the UK as we move through 2017. The cost increases we witnessed last year have, in the main filtered through and global growth continues as the economy slowly improves. Let's hope that the forthcoming general election and Brexit negotiations don't throw a spanner in the works!
WINDMILL BLOG - JANUARY 2017
Happy New Year – 2017 will hopefully be a more prosperous one for all of us!
2016 proved to be a difficult trading year for many in the packaging & print sector largely as a result of the post Brexit devaluation in Sterling. Windmill certainly noticed the corresponding jump in costs which inevitably affected margins. Since then the economy seems to have responded well so it’s full steam ahead this year.
Windmill continue to be active in the local community through initiatives with the Seashell Trust and Cheadle College. It’s long since been our policy to help local organisations through work placements and volunteering. Robert & Amin (& their carers) from Seashell are frequent visitors to our label facility and prove to be very useful in the packing department!
WINDMILL BLOG - NOVEMBER
Windmill have completed the implementation of the new CERM management information system. This powerful tool means a great deal of training is required and we’re now starting to see the rewards of our efforts. The customer should see the benefits in terms of better response from the sales team & quicker turn round of jobs. Typically we could process up to 100 jobs going through production across the whole business on any given day so it’s important that management information is readily at hand for both operators and the sales team.
In other news Windmill are partnering with the Seashell Trust in Heald Green to support their charity work in the community.
‘The Seashell Trust is a national charity supporting children and young adults with complex learning disabilities and additional communication needs from across the UK. We provide education and care, from 2 – 25 years, at our outstanding residential school and college and through our short breaks services.’
Helpers and patients visit from time to time for work experience which we feel gives the guys a different perspective from life at the college.
WINDMILL BLOG - JULY
Windmill have completed the implementation of the new CERM management information system. The key benefit of this MIS software will be the stream lining of label order processing & improved efficiency in this key area of the business with a resulting increase in productivity. The benefit for our customers will be improved lead & response times from the team. This system represents a significant investment in technology and also has a bespoke element for tape production.
In other news Windmill have completed the installation of a new HP WS 6800 digital label press from HP Indigo. The 6800 is the latest offering from HP who continue to make inroads into the flexo label market at a rapid rate as the market changes to digitally produced labels. The key driver to this change is the need for a greater variety of product which in turns leads to shorter label run lengths. The retail market drives this as it enables the customisation of product on an ever increasing scale. The 6800 press matches our existing 6600 machine for speed but has the added benefit of an inline spectrometer for easier colour matching on press rather than in the studio. The 6800 replaces our old series 4 press, the HP WS 4050 and runs at twice the speed. Our aim is to increase run lengths and throughput in digital which in turn will free up our flexo presses for the real high volume work.
The purchase of the HP WS 6800 digital label press was funded by Barclays Asset Finance Corporate Banking. We partner with Barclays for all our asset and working capital finance and find Robin Richards and the whole team very supportive. Whilst this recent investment came a bit sooner than originally planned we feel that the current lending climate remains positive and enables us to continue to grow our label business.
WINDMILL BLOG : 18/01/16
New Year, new MIS! Windmill are implementing a new management information system in conjunction with CERM Belgium. CERM, who are owned by German print solution giant Heidelberg, are recognised as one of the leading tape and label MIS providers in Europe and have extensive experience in implementing systems for multi platform producers such as Windmill.
Having operated the same sales order processing software for a number of years we feel it will be several months in the making before we're fully operational but that the benefits in efficiency will soon become evident enabling us to improve the service we offer to our customers.
On another note Windmill have recently adopted Payment Sense for cash & credit cards payments. This system makes ordering and payment much easier for our cash customers who require quick turn around on relatively lower value orders.