ArcelorMittal, the Sheffield based manufacturer of the EstateWIRE brand of fencing, have just completed their second expansion of their onsite warehousing to increase their storage capacity even further.
In 2019, they expanded on to a second site and have now erected a new structure which has increased capacity by 1000sqm and can house up to 1000t of finished products.
“The momentum our EstateWIRE brand has gathered over recent years is seeing our sales go from strength to strength” commented CEO Tony Hinchliffe. “Our industry is predominantly one which is serviced from stock so an increase in sales means we have to increase our stocks in order to service those sales”.
Tony went on to explain, “we had a good year in 2019 but it was apparent in the first few months of this year that the new warehousing completed in 2019 was not going to be sufficient to sustain our business going forward. Additional sales volumes means additional finished goods, but it also means we need to carry extra raw material stocks”.
Work began very quickly at the start of this year on ArcelorMittal’s plans for this new warehouse but with planning permission required from the local authority and then of course COVID, it didn’t happen as quickly as they would have liked and needed.
“In all honesty, it has not been easy for our teams to manage but they have done a remarkable job to get this structural work completed, whilst in the middle of a pandemic, and whilst also having one of our best production and sales years so hats off to them, they have been superb! We now have extra space and are able to build better stocks to ensure our availability and service is not compromised as we grow”.
Increased manning levels is also on the cards for ArcelorMittal as they plan to increase numbers before the end of the year in all production areas including maintenance and warehouse as well as machine operators.
“In terms of manning, our workforce have always been flexible in that we can turn up the production rate when required (in high season) and turn down again in quieter times, but what we have seen this year is that there have been no quieter times for us. We have been running at high speed all year and this is not sustainable for our team” Tony commented.
“Increased manning will mean we can run flat out without running our people flat out! We have had the most incredible year in what has been the most strange year. When I look at our figures in terms of sales, production and absenteeism, you would never know we have been through the worst health crisis of our life time and that’s down to the dedication, attitude and commitment of our people. Our constant drive to move onwards and upwards is to build a better, stronger business with them, and for them” he concluded.