Once Michael Floyd and James Caragher, the owners of Glenn Rieder, decided building a new 120,000-square-foot facility in West Allis was the right move for their growing company, work kicked into high gear.
Although Glenn Rieder is in the construction industry as an architectural millwork manufacturer and custom interior contractor, Floyd and Caragher had never built their own manufacturing facility, nor have they designed a modern and efficient office environment. They found, however, that surrounding yourself with the right experts and putting together a solid plan are integral to any business planning to construct a new facility.
One of their first moves after deciding to build a new facility was to hire John Mann, a local construction manager, to serve as the company’s eyes and ears on the project.
“From our experience with customer projects, we saw that the most successful ones had construction managers who worked for the project owners,” Floyd said. “They looked out for the company and its interests.”
The construction manager also allows Floyd and Caragher to stay focused on running the company, rather than constantly worrying about the ins and outs of the building project, including managing the architect and general contractor. They remain involved to a degree, but the construction manager handles the details.
Floyd and Caragher knew that efficiency has suffered in the company’s current confined manufacturing facility. To remedy that, they enlisted the help of a process engineer who is looking at machinery and equipment placement, fabrication processes and how Glenn Rieder’s employees currently work to develop the most effective layout for the new factory floor. The process engineer will also coordinate and plan the company’s physical move.
To help with the overall office design, including workstations, they enlisted Zimmerman Architectural Studios, another bank customer. They also asked some of their department heads what they imagine their employees’ workspace needs might be in five or 10 years.
“Our industry has changed. We are moving toward a paperless world and no longer need large tables to roll out architectural plans,” Floyd said. “Instead, we need desks and work areas large enough to accommodate multiple computer screens. We are also designing work areas and a common space to promote collaboration and strengthen communication among employees. Zimmerman is helping us design what is best for our employees and visiting job partners.”
For business owners building a new facility, Floyd sums up what he’s learned from this experience: “Surround yourself with the professionals who have the expertise to make your project a success.”
Expanding businesses have a lot of options. So far, we’ve looked at Glenn Rieder and its decision to build a new facility and TJ Hale’s plan to expand its current facility. Sign up
to read more on my series on business expansion options.
Glenn Rieder designs, manufactures and installs custom architectural millwork and interiors for resorts, luxury retailers, restaurants and commercial offices across the United States. See a collection of their work.