During August and September, 4 of my blogs will mention how, in my opinion, Solar Solve is one of the best businesses in the world to trade with. The original company motto, which has been our motivation ever since 1975, was ‘The Customer is King’. It still is, even though we realise it may not be considered politically correct or appropriate in some parts of the world, we hope that the core message by implication is; – at Solar Solve no one is more important than our customers and we do absolutely everything we can to delight them. Customers can expect EXACTLY WHAT they want, EXACTLY WHEN they want it and EXACTLY WHERE they want it.
Being the best does not just happen, it has to be worked hard for by the whole team, who are all committed to the cause. I have tried to combine all of the requirements into 4 main categories, one for each of the 4 blogs referred to above. They include:-
1) Regular Staff Training and Appraisals for our Committed Employees.
2) Constant Checking and Performance Analysis Monitoring.
3) Reliable Suppliers/Service Providers.
4) Maximum Control.
Reliable suppliers/service providers are another absolutely essential element of the perfect manufacturing and supply operation. Whilst not always true, it is generally the case that ‘you only get what you pay for’ and Solar Solve’s buyers usually have to pay more for good quality and reliability from our suppliers and service providers. If we get it, then the extra cost is a worthwhile additional overhead enabling us to meet our commitments to our customers. If we don’t get it then we document the relative notes and evidence and look elsewhere. The defaulting supplier business may well continue to trade successfully, offering their ‘flawed’ product/service to less demanding customers and we have no problem with that, as long as we are able to continue sourcing those who best suit our requirements.
At Solar Solve we always have at least 6 months supply of components in stock in case of a sudden and sustained increase in orders because some of our major components have a 4-month lead time. We therefore understand the consequences of under-stocking and for this reason we expect our suppliers to always be well stocked or able to produce very quickly and to operate a philosophy similar to SSL’s, so that they can always deliver what we need, when we need it.
One of Solar Solve’s main component suppliers has been providing our business with major components for 30 years, ever since we created the current SOLASAFE product in 1989. Another major component supplier was sourced 2 years later and has been providing us with their components ever since. The springs we use are manufactured and supplied by a very reliable company that has been supplying us for over 20 years. When we find a company that meets our stringent requirements we work with them to retain the partnership for the long term, for the benefit of both stakeholders and it really is very gratifying.
Being an ISO9001 : 2015 Quality Assured organisation and very proud of the fact, we have learnt a plethora of good working practices, one of which is to create an Approved Suppliers List. Once again, constantly keeping it updated is part of the Quality Standard procedures and it does take discipline but we know it will help us to ‘get the best and discard the rest’, when it comes to supplier and service provider selection.
There are numerous commendations on our website testimonials page here, some stating that we are perfect and cannot improve. They are nice to receive but there is a lot goes into earning them. You can read more about some of the other factors in additional blogs over August and September.
JHL MBE SSL Co. Chairman