Based in New Jersey, Lamatek manufactures a wide range of adhesive and foam tapes, foam and silicon gaskets and packaging/ weatherstripping products. Two friends started the company together in 1983. At first, growth was slow but since 2000, the company has enjoyed a growth rate of 25% per year.
Lamatek’s high-performance foam tape is suited for both interior and exterior use. It has high tensile strength and moisture resistance, and it also has shock and noise dampening qualities. This means that it has a host of different applications: it is used industrially in the manufacture of household appliances such as refrigerators, washers, dryers and stoves, as well as in the construction of metal buildings and canopies.
Quality Assurance Manager Terri Chicosky recalls: “We began doing the research and working through the initial performance processes on our own in 2008. Then in 2009, we interviewed several different consultancy companies, looking for one that could help us. IMSM just seemed to be the best fit. We felt confident with them. Their sales person was very reassuring and seemed to have a good grasp of what we were doing. He really made our senior management feel comfortable with the procedures involved in certification.”
Lamatek did find the certification procedures challenging. Although the company had been doing things right over the years, most of its procedures were communicated verbally; very few had been formally documented.
Terri says, “We did find the procedure tough, but at the same time, we knew it was good for us. On the whole, the ISO hasn’t really changed the way we do things, but now we have put the various requirements into writing, whereas before they were mostly just met by intuition. So the Training Program Supervisor would know who was capable of running a certain machine, or Sales Manager would have a list in his head of which vendors were good and which had certain qualities. Now, all of this information is written down and recorded.”
Terri was impressed with the help his IMSM representative offered: “She did an incredibly professional job and was very knowledgeable about our company. She had a strong background in manufacturing and she could deliver exactly what we needed.”
Lamatek obtained certification in May 2010. Terri believes that it has made the company more stable. “Having the ISO has helped us to increase our internal efficiency and advance the way we accomplish things.” He has also noticed that customer perception of the company has improved: “I believe that it has made a 100% improvement in sales. Customers told us before that they wouldn’t come to us because we didn’t have the ISO. Now, they tell us that they are coming to us because we have it! It’s made a considerable increase in our OEM sales (original equipment manufacture), which is crucial to our company. Basically, it’s enabled us to diversify our market.”
Over the past year, Lamatek’s Senior Management team has become more and more enthusiastic about the benefits of the ISO certification. Terri says, “We have just hung up a banner in our production room. Our whole company is embracing the ISO certification. It’s becoming increasingly important to our company.