Rick McKinley (pictured second from left) has worked for ECS for a little over four years. He started as a manufacturing technician and now runs the daily operations of the shop. Rick has been instrumental in creating the procedures and processes that allow ECS to deliver high quality corrosion management products with industry-best delivery times.
He leads our production and shipping team much like the way he coaches his youth basketball teams – with a calm confidence so that his “players” never miss a shot.
How does your team meet the ECS 72-hour lead time guarantee?
Rick: “We start early in the shop. The production team comes in at 6 am every morning to get started on the day’s work. We have a production schedule, and everyone knows what they are working on for the day and what they will be working on the next day. Although everyone isn’t always working on the same task, we are working towards the same goal: to exceed our customer’s expectations.
We strive to get orders out as soon as possible, but we never miss our 72-hour guarantee. When an order comes in, the shipping clerks communicate with the technicians building our products to ensure they go out on time. In the Amazon era, 72 hours can seem like a long time to wait for an order to ship, but in the manufacturing world it is quite quick. Some manufactures have lead times as much as 60 to 90 days. We pride ourselves on the quality of our product and our ability to respond quickly when processing orders.”
How have daily operations and shipping changed at ECS?
Rick: “In the 5 years I have been with ECS, we have come a long way. We started with two people working in a small sublet space in the back of another company’s building; now we’re working in our own 25,000 square foot facility. In the beginning, the shop was raw with minimal rack storage. Since then, we have moved twice and reorganized countless times. Although the shop works well in the current layout, we recognize there is always a way to get more out of our space. We have added more storage and optimized our layout for the way we build our products. Organization and cleanliness are evident at ECS and vendors and guests that visit our shop continually note how clean and organized we are.”
What sets ECS products apart?
Rick: “We are innovators at ECS from top to bottom. We are constantly trying to improve both the product and the way we build it. We look for both small and large improvements. On all improvements, we take time to put in all the thought needed to ensure the improvement lives up to the ECS name. All our products go through rigorous testing.”
How have you kept up with growing customer demand for wet vents to meet NFPA 13 requirements?
Rick: "My team builds and ships the ECS Ejector Automatic Air Vent or PAV-W. Working with our Director of Product Management we were able to improve the vent by reducing the size and weight. We have also streamlined the production process to reduce the time it takes to build each unit – even with the increased demand we are shipping vents within 24 hours.”