FeneTech Hosts Annual Users Conference

July 7, 2009
Meetings & Events
Craig Morris of FeneVision led one of many breakout sessions held for attendees at the conference.

When the recovery will come is less important than being ready and continuing to improve in the meantime. That was the attitude among managers of window and door and glass fabrication companies who gathered at the end of June for the annual FeneVision user conference hosted by FeneTech Inc. 

Many attendees reported that the market slump has increased their motivation to reduce costs. “While we’re always looking to improve productivity, service levels and use of information, the current economy makes it even more critical to find more ways to save time and materials,” noted Ron Mascarella, vice president of systems and technology for Ohio-based Vista Window Co. 

Geoff Roise, president of Lindsay Window & Door in Minnesota, said his company “has been working on improving our process all along. We’re here to help us keep doing that.”

FeneTech reports that some 45 people from 20 companies gathered from around the country for the three-day conference, held on Ohio’s South Bass Island in Western Lake Erie.  Continuing to improve through sharing information was a theme cited by a number of attendees. Other benefits mentioned include getting face-to-face with FeneTech staff and providing input on upcoming improvements to FeneVision and other applications. “It’s time well-used even though we’re busy this time of year,” said Don Montini of Pennsylvania-based Interstate Window & Door Co.nia.  located from Maine to California to the three-day conference.

“We can’t stop improving,” added Toby Nichols, chief information officer for Wincore Windows & Doors in West Virginia. “The competition won’t.”  Wincore has experienced dramatic growth since opening in 2006, but constantly searches for ways to reduce costs while maintaining or improving quality and service levels, he noted.  He and a dozen others attendees were in a session at the conference focusing on MaxOpt, which allows optimizing lineals over multiple batches to provide greater potential savings over conventional optimization.

Nichols said attending the conference lets him, “see different methods for handling similar problems,” a sentiment echoed by Mascarella. “I’ve been to seven of these. It’s easy to think you know everything, but through sharing ideas with the other attendees, we learn something every year that helps us work smarter.”

FeneTech has expanded internationally the past two years. Christian Krenn from SoftSolution in Austria, a FeneTech partner and developer of SCAD, Virtual Digitizing, Line Scanner and Cullet Scanner systems, presented at a number of sessions. Other participating suppliers included Intigral, Ventana, Wakefield, Tru-Seal, Leading Edge Distribution, Truth Hardware, MT Group, A.S. Engineering Services and Silco.

In addition to existing customers, FeneTech also invited three prospective customers to attend this year. “We’re privileged to have this relationship with our customers," concluded Ron Crowl, FeneTech president, in discussing the annual user conference. "They help each other here and in our online forum, as well as guiding us on issues and improvements.”