Manufacturing Extension Partnership of Louisiana
ASMC Member Providing Hands-On Help through the Manufacturing Extension Partnership of Louisiana
Tri-C Machine, Inc., located in Houma, Louisiana, manufactures parts for downhole tools assembly for the oil and gas industry, including oilfield flanges and chicksan joints safety clamps. Founded in 1983, the family-owned company has a local customer base. Tri-C currently employs four people.
Tri-C Machine was experiencing a slow period. Sales were going down. Customers were requiring their suppliers to meet quality management system requirements developed by the American Petroleum Institute (API). Oilfield companies were reluctant to give work to companies that did not meet API standards. The company also needed to get its accounting procedures and records more organized. Tri-C Machine contacted the Manufacturing Extension Partnership of Louisiana (MEPoL), a NIST MEP network affiliate, for help.
MEPoL project director Lenn Chiasson worked with the Tri-C Machine to secure some assistance funding from USDA Rural Development and from the Louisiana Department of Economic Development’s Small and Emerging Business Development (SEBD) program. Some of the SEBD program funds were acquired from a portion allocated to MEPoL clientele, and some were acquired from a portion allocated to the South Louisiana Economic Council (SLEC) at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux.
After securing funding assistance, Lenn brought in Durell Kraemer, president of K-Quality Plus, to help the company write and implement the elements of a quality management system. K-Quality Plus is an external consultant for MEPoL. Durell compiled and implemented an API 5CT, API 6A, API 7, and ISO 9001:2000 Quality Management Program over a three-phase process. All of the documentation is stored electronically. The company was audited by API and was certified to API product specification 6A after passing the audit.
Wendy Olivier, owner of Computerized Accounting Support Services, was brought in to help Tri-C Machine with its accounting system. Her company also serves as an external consultant for MEPoL. Wendy installed the QuickBooks accounting system for Tri-C Machine and properly trained the management staff to obtain an understanding of the accounting cycle, software and financial reporting.
- Certified to API product specification 6A.
- Retained customers and obtained new customers.
- Doubled sales.
- Improved accounting system.
- Expanded into new building.
- Anticipate hiring additional employees.
- Saved $3,900 due to financial assistance from USDA Rural Development and $8,495 due to financial assistance from SEBD.
“We couldn’t have done it without the help of the state and MEPoL. We were able to do everything we needed to get done in order to stay in business. It is the smartest thing we ever did.”
Craig Ordoyne, Foreman