Latest Articles in Strategies & Practices

  • The market is demanding resistance to rot, and a number of factors
    At Lincoln Windows, we’re known for making quality wood windows and doors. We’ve been in the business for over 50 years. During that time the company has integrated changes in our products as a result of technology, market demands, and product integrity. Recently, we pulled all of these reasons together to solve a nagging problem associated with wood—rot. In today’s... more »
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    Simonton Windows has worked to establish an infrastructure and now is poised to reach beyond the trades to become a recognized name with consumers across the country
    Simonton Windows grew throughout the '90s to become one of the first vinyl window manufacturers with a national presence. One key to that achievement was its efforts to set an industry benchmark of seven days for delivery times nearly a decade ago. John Brunett, Simonton's president, still sees that benchmark as an important element in its growth, although he emphasizes that it is the Parkersburg... more »
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    ECMD's CEO looks at consolidation at the dealer level and how it has led the firm to a restructure of its manufacturing and distribution operations
    In 1982, ECMD was started as East Coast Millwork Distributors, Inc. Based in North Wilkesboro, NC, it was not a typical two-step distributor, but focused on wood mouldings. Since that time, the company has expanded to become not only a full-line millwork distributor, but also a Window & Door Top 100 manufacturer, producing Arndt & Hermann Windows. Recently, ECMD completed a restructuring... more »
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    JIT and fully-integrated, Gienow is taking on the challenge of bringing everything online
    Gienow Building Products enjoys a reputation for manufacturing innovation. Just-in-time or JIT manufacturing is a goal at window and door industry companies across North America, but few are probably at the stage reached by the Canadian manufacturer, where most products literally come off the line and are loaded onto a truck. Window & Door recently traveled to Calgary, AB, to visit the... more »
  • Is there still room for smaller manufacturers in today's industry?
    At a time when many observers see consolidation as the defining trend within our industry, Window & Door thought it would be interesting to gain a different perspective. While much talk has centered around “the big getting bigger, and the smaller guy disappearing,” we know there are plenty of not-so-big companies doing just fine, thank you very much.The window and door industry... more »
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    A little analysis can often yield significant improvements without adding significant capital or labor costs
        In looking at how to improve manufacturing efficiencies, there are a number of questions you need to ask yourself. Do you have control of the manufacturing process? Is your labor cost at what it should be or is it too high? Is your manufacturing running at peak efficiency? Is your manufacturing process running at peak capacity? Do you need to add manufacturing equipment?Often,... more »
  • Implementation is still limited, but Web-based systems for business-to-business transactions are projected to be the norm within two years
    Approaching the holidays, on-line shopping appeared to be the major story of the evening news every night. Amazon.com’s founder was named Time’s Man of the Year. The Super Bowl was renamed the Dot Com Bowl by many as Web-based businesses appeared to dominate this annual advertising showcase. E-commerce is the undeniable buzzword of the business world as we enter the new century and... more »
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    In a 1999 interview, Mike Gilkey of Cincinnati's Gilkey Windows discusses his firm's focus on high quality products and service, as well as the impact of big boxes, consolidation, and other industry trends.
    Mike Gilkey of Cincinnati's Gilkey Windows discusses his firm's focus on high quality products and service, as well as the impact of big boxes, consolidation, and other industry trends.September 1999 Mike Gilkey started Gilkey Window Co. in 1978, selling and installing wood windows, as well as custom vinyl replacement windows. In 1986, the company began manufacturing its own vinyl windows, which... more »
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    Weather Shield's Lee Schield talks about product development, automation, and quality, as well as his reputation for doing things his own way
    Lee Schield, founder of Weather Shield Mfg., Inc., is an industry legend. He has built the company, started over 35 years ago, into one of the country's largest, most respected window manufacturers. He is also known for following his own path, a quality that was evident when Weather Shield became one of the first wood window manufacturers to embrace vinyl. That same characteristic can be seen in... more »
  • Materials Aluminum Extruders Council Web site features extensive information on aluminum production, processing and recyclability. Forest Certification Resource Center Created by Metafore, an organization focused on enabling businesses to make better environmental choices, this site provides an overview of forestry certification and links to a variety of programs around the world... more »