PCL takes customer-first approach with £550k factory restructure


Pneumatics expert PCL has invested £550,000 into the restructuring of its Sheffield factory for lean manufacturing and new product development.

The firm says the investment is part of its aim to drive forward efficiency and flexibility for customers, improving business operations, and enhancing performance and safety.

This has involved the installation of three carousel storage units to create space, improved stock accuracy and a safe and organised factory floor.

There’s also a mobile warehouse implementation planned for Q4 2022, using scanners for improved accuracy and reduced process errors.

An upgraded RP system has increased functionality and improved processes, while auto bagging machines have reduced time and costs and increased capacity.

Other changes implemented by PCL include a touch screen PC for line side Standard Operating Procedures and quality plans, and investment into increased machine capacity and capability – including a new lathe, machine upgrades, SPC dataloggers and tool regrinding machine.

The shakeup is being spearheaded by operations director Dean Battersby, who was brought in by PCL in 2020 to drive improvements in all areas of the operations, particularly around creating a more agile operation that is reactive to customer demands.

“Further investments into new machinery and products are planned for 2023,” he said.

“We are developing quicker, more responsive and competitive ways to progress from idea into the marketplace and will continue to do whatever we can to meet and exceed customer expectations, improving delivery performance whilst maintaining the high quality of the PCL brand.

“Supply chains will continue to be a challenge post-pandemic, and we are actively working with suppliers to develop and, where required, expand our supplier base.

“However, we are investing in new equipment and machines towards increasing capacity and an additional shift to manufacturing more of our components in-house,” Battersby added.