Assist

On the heels of double-digit growth in 2003, Delafield-based Datasyst is looking for another strong year of business as it capitalizes on expanded facilities and new quality accreditation.
The company, which is a third-party testing and design partner to producers of all types of mechanical and electronic components and assemblies, saw revenue increases of between 25% and 30% last year, said Elizabeth Hoisington, director of business development for the family-owned firm.
That growth has been coming as Midwestern manufacturers have faced continuing pressures from offshore operations. That pressure has, to some degree, helped Datasyst as U.S. companies have sought its services to raise their own operating efficiencies and quality, and to overcome hurdles, Hoisington says.
"Manufacturing has trimmed back to save on internal costs," she notes. But with work that still needs to be done, companies such as Datasyst benefit from the situation by being able to provide outsourced expertise.
"They are turning to us to find ways to operate more efficiently or to produce a higher-quality product, or to get over a hump somehow," she says. "Sometimes, it just takes another set of eyes to see a solution, or sometimes it requires a different competency to view it."
Last year, the company doubled its space at 33511 Hwy. 18, acquiring the other half of the 20,000-square-foot building it had been operating in and acquiring an additional smaller building.
The new space is allowing the company to offer expanded environmental testing, which includes simulation of temperature, humidity and corrosive environments for mechanical and electrical components.
Additional testing chambers accommodate test units up to 80×17 feet.
This year, the company was awarded accreditation by the American Association for Laboratory Accreditation in the field of mechanical testing. The association’s accreditation goes beyond ISO requirements, Hoisington noted.
The accreditation "adds credibility as we grow into new markets where we are not known," Hoisingon said. "They not only look at our processes but, also, at our people and their capabilities."
Laboratory accreditation is the formal recognition of a test lab’s technical competency to perform specific tests or types of tests.
The company was founded in 1990 by her parents, Dave and Rose Hoisington. Dave Hoisington spent 35 years with the old Allis-Chalmers in West Allis – the last 15 years of that in A-C’s Advanced Technology Center.
The company now employs about 15 people, and it works with outside consultants on an as-needed basis. The staff sees little turnover and is held together by a dynamic, challenging enviroment, and by a family atmosphere the company fosters, Hoisington says. Employees eat lunch together each day in a company-paid-for meal that not only serves as a benefit but which also brings people together to talk in a closer way, she adds. Clients are occasionally brought in for those discussion lunches, too.
Hoisington sees a role for the family business in redefining Wisconsin’s business base, as Gov. Jim Doyle recently spoke about.
Noting Doyle’s remarks about how technology-oriented companies in the state can help each other and bring new efficiencies to manufacturing, Hoisington said, "We have been quietly doing that for the past 15 years."
It was a call from the governor "to have manufacturers look at the resources in the state to find ways we can work together to improve the position of all
of us."
Datasyst’s primary business territory is the industrial Midwest, with the triangle from Green Bay to Madison to Chicago encompassing many of its clients, but it has customers nationwide.

Feb. 20, 2004 Small Business Times, Milwaukee

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Christine McMahon helps leaders develop strategies and improve speed of execution by developing leadership talent, creating alignment between business functions and improving communications and accountability up, down and across a business. She is co-founder of the Leadership Institute and is in partnership with the WMEP. For keynote presentations, executive coaching, sales and leadership training, she can be reached at: ccm@christinemcmahon.com.

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