Manufacturing Transformed
04. Another episode


Episode Description

After getting fed up with the lack of getting good data from their 3rd ERP system, Kurt discovered ProShop ERP and decided that it was the system for them. Once they overcame the fears of change and objections from some of their more senior employees, they ditched the paper and never looked back. They now feature ProShop on their building sign, business cards, and company advertisements. Amazing!! Kurt also shares their innovative solution for recruiting new employees and may other valuable insights in this episode.  Enjoy!

About Kajan Perfection:
Kajan Perfection has been in business since 1980, first starting out as a small job shop—repair shop. We are a quality oriented, family owned and operated business keenly aware of the importance of quality parts and on time deliveries. Since our founding we have grown into a quick turnaround, small quantity prototype facility with experience in most stainless, titanium, nickel alloys including Nitronic and HyMu, and many other exotic materials as well as the standard 4140/4130 and mild steel grades. We are also experienced in machining aluminum and many types of plastics. Throughout the years we have had the opportunity to build and perfect the manufacturing process for parts such as gage carriers, setting tools, various types of manifolds, flow control equipment, housings, landing nipples, flanged parts, crossover subs, and test and separation equipment. From the simplest boat anchor to the most complicated flow control devices to immaculately machined acrylic show pieces, we have over 300 years of combined experience here at Kajan Perfection and we have never turned down the challenge of a complicated part.

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Episode Transcript

00:00:00:00 – 00:00:10:04
Unknown
Hi, Paul. Thanks for having me.

00:00:10:06 – 00:00:30:16
Unknown
My.

00:00:30:18 – 00:01:02:16
Unknown
Okay. So, I’m third. Okay. I am a one third owner of Cajun Perfection Machine Shop in Houma, Louisiana. we we started back in 1980, I think I was 12 or 13 at the time. my two brothers, Matt and Kit, started. It was my father, Julius. Probably the worst time to start a machine shop. interest rates and the, oil and gas industry being in such a huge slump back then.

00:01:02:18 – 00:01:39:12
Unknown
But we’ve, persevered and, made it through the through the first decade. strictly a manual job shop, with 2 or 3 basic manual leaves with still on, they no longer produce and, the Blue mill. And we purchased our first CNC machine in 1991, and I was just, it was amazing. In five. that specific machine purchased to recut, threads.

00:01:39:12 – 00:02:09:18
Unknown
One oh of the pipe, the go downhole. And we’ve been expanding on that ever since. I was the slower of the machinist, so I get put on that machine, and that was kind of my forte. I guess you could say. And I just took off with that. And, you we just persevered several several hurricanes later and, that’s that’s the most recent being Hurricane Ida, which was 2 or 3 years ago.

00:02:09:22 – 00:02:27:01
Unknown
That was probably the worst one modern history to best of this area. But. Yeah, yeah.

00:02:27:03 – 00:02:49:10
Unknown
Yeah, yeah. I’ve even, you know, we’ve been searching for a good contingency plan in the event this happens again. But the power demand so great for a machine job, it makes it a challenge. So we’re still kind of fine tuning those those little details and.

00:02:49:12 – 00:03:20:01
Unknown
We’re about where it’s seven, eight, eight work centers, 20, 25 people. at our at our peak in 2014, we had almost 50 people. But we’ve downsized since then because of the back to back downturns that we experienced. The hurricane being one of the.

00:03:20:03 – 00:03:32:13
Unknown
Real.

00:03:32:15 – 00:03:55:09
Unknown
Yeah. Well, while sitting here waiting for this to start, I was reviewing some of the topics that we’re going to be discussing. When you hit on that one. I started the day back from what we had, and in the early days we had a custom built one in, Lotus. I think that’s what it was called. Yeah, it was pretty old.

00:03:55:09 – 00:04:21:00
Unknown
And then we went to a different one called Real Track, and then it’s a Dragon now Pro shop. I’ll never forget the conversation that led me to you guys was during one of the downturns that I mentioned. I was on the phone with our accountant, basically just complaining. Why am why am I not getting what I need from this, this program?

00:04:21:02 – 00:04:48:17
Unknown
And I guess he got frustrated with me and he told me to find something else because he didn’t have the answers that I was asking for. So I the next day I went home and spent the day at home. And it’s the first time I spoke to you at my little office in our kitchen, on a kitchen counter with my little laptop, looking for alternatives.

00:04:48:19 – 00:04:59:06
Unknown
To very basic projections. job through job posting was a big was a big, big thing.

00:04:59:08 – 00:05:25:05
Unknown
I don’t remember all of the details. I remember the conversation, but I that led to a list of what I wanted in a new system, which then led to me doing the research, online. He referred me to get error, and, you guys are right, pretty high up there and get error. So one thing led to the next.

00:05:25:07 – 00:05:51:20
Unknown
It’s it’s it’s I think it’s the cumbersome ness. And I don’t know if it’s the software or if it’s just that it’s server based, of the previous program that’s been so labor intensive to manage. And so.

00:05:51:22 – 00:06:05:08
Unknown
Yes, yes, it was doable, but it was very, very labor intensive. And.

00:06:05:10 – 00:06:23:05
Unknown
Often, I’d say most times we did. I think you had you’d have to hire another person just to do that, which it probably is still worth it, but it’s you don’t have to hire the other person and still get it done. So much the better.

00:06:23:07 – 00:06:40:20
Unknown
Yeah.

00:06:40:22 – 00:07:01:22
Unknown
Yeah.

00:07:02:00 – 00:07:16:11
Unknown
Yes, but I’d like to say first, it’s good to see that you’re advancing with the company yourself. That was less. Yeah.

00:07:16:13 – 00:07:29:19
Unknown
That was. I think we’re going on three years now. So 21.

00:07:29:20 – 00:07:36:07
Unknown
Is impressive.

00:07:36:09 – 00:07:46:13
Unknown
You know.

00:07:46:15 – 00:08:10:23
Unknown
That was, what it was. You and Brian. We had several meetings with you guys, but then when we finally got on board, it was Michael. Yes. And I still I still communicate with him. every once in a while. It was slow. It was. It was interesting that the. I think the older the person, the harder head they have.

00:08:11:01 – 00:08:32:05
Unknown
So the older folks was a little harder to get on board. The younger ones, they, they gobble this technology up so fast and they, they do it so fast. So I would say the first year was, you know, no, you have to do it like this, that, like that and that sort of thing. But now it’s it’s pretty well integrated.

00:08:32:07 – 00:08:49:14
Unknown
It’s, it’s almost, it’s always it’s not 100%, but it’s close to being pretty seamless from start to finish.

00:08:49:16 – 00:09:23:01
Unknown
Is that many of us last. Resort. If we’re at 25, 3 or 4 of us, or 45 to 55, the rest or 20s and 30s, and that’s. But that’s, we are targeting that age group, the younger guys and girls, with Facebook ads and whatnot, and we’re really promoting Pro shop and other technologies that we have on board to attract the younger generations.

00:09:25:20 – 00:09:45:00
Unknown
We, you know, we’re, we’re advertising that, which we do. We’ll train you is you, but you you have to be willing to put in the effort and, and have the common sense and the work ethic to do it. And it’s it’s pay off. It’s quite an expense. But again, the technology was in pro shop and other things.

00:09:45:00 – 00:10:15:11
Unknown
We have going on there is it’s attractive to these younger people that don’t want to go to college.

00:10:15:13 – 00:10:40:09
Unknown
You it it it is, fortunately for us, we’re only about a mile or two from a local high school. So these kids are passing in front of our business every day. I think we could do a better job at putting the Cajun profession name on the highway itself. instead of just relying on things because they they don’t really know what we are yet.

00:10:40:11 – 00:11:07:13
Unknown
So there’s some still some physical, on the grounds work to do. But a university, we would when, just about all of our advertising somewhere in there is a pro shop logo or powered by Pro shop or something to that effect, because that it draws them in.

00:11:07:15 – 00:11:56:10
Unknown
Is, it’s it’s on the building. We, we distribute, some, some, insulated mugs to our customers. And it’s on there and a lot of our business cards, and it’s mainly not for the, the customers, but for to, to engage these younger people that might, would be interested in either machine work inspection or whatnot, as opposed to going to college.

00:11:56:12 – 00:12:21:00
Unknown
That was a because of the, lack of immediate buy in across the board. It took a little longer than what I liked. If I had to do it again, I was sent a deadline companywide. Like it or not, this is when we’re going live. And I didn’t do that. So it different, different modules came on board at different times.

00:12:21:00 – 00:12:38:22
Unknown
And I think I would say and then when we finally cut the cord, there was some panic, you know, how are we going to do it and whatnot. But we did fine. you know, I, I was I was concerned too, but it wasn’t really that big a deal other than I should have just set a deadline.

00:12:39:00 – 00:13:09:02
Unknown
This is it. Like it or not.

00:13:09:03 – 00:13:50:02
Unknown
It was not amongst my brothers and I. It was, But it was almost totally the older generation. And, just a fear of change. Having to being an owner and a manager and also the pro shop champion, I see that it was problems, too. I should have had someone on board that could have taken that responsibility from me so that it was given the attention that it deserves.

00:13:50:04 – 00:14:31:08
Unknown
Yes. I took it upon myself and I didn’t give it the time that it needed. So I think that’s what drove it out of the long to.

00:14:31:10 – 00:15:00:05
Unknown
Things. As far as the information goes, everything improved. There’s nothing that did not improve. So I can’t point to one specific thing. the efficiency of getting the information into the system. If it’s cumbersome, you tend to get garbage more than if it’s not. So all that whole the quality of the information improved just because it’s simplicity. But the information flow improves across the board.

00:15:00:07 – 00:15:28:21
Unknown
I see tell you one area where this improved, but this was the same. No, it was across the board and it’s just the interconnectivity of the whole thing. And.

00:15:28:23 – 00:15:52:07
Unknown
Was that there was a which I didn’t understand. And at the time there was a fear of not having the paper travel. And we talked about that with the but we discussed that even before Pro Shop came along. And it was like, oh God, I used to do that. But now if you looking back, it’s a stupid idea to have the paper traveling through the shop.

00:15:52:09 – 00:16:22:08
Unknown
It’s it just doesn’t make any sense. Yeah.

00:16:22:10 – 00:16:55:11
Unknown
Right. Well.

00:16:55:13 – 00:17:24:14
Unknown
Yes. That improves. Significantly. I think we can still do a better job, but that’s a resource issue. as we, you know, we still need probably to bring on a couple of project managers, but all in all, it’s it’s just a click of a mouse. You know, they are to click and then you can see how you did and see if you, if you went wrong in a certain area or not.

00:17:24:16 – 00:18:06:05
Unknown
There’s no really no research. It’s just a matter of looking at a screen and then you see that how you’re doing on a particular part averaged over the several jobs that you’ve done instead of or by job. So, and what goes hand in hand with that is if we continue to enforce or emphasize the importance of the employees leaving information behind, if they fell short, why did they fall short notes and we didn’t, we even, installed a little script on each computer where they can hit two keys and it puts the time, and the time and dates stamps.

00:18:06:05 – 00:18:32:11
Unknown
The note so that we can see who left the note. And instead of typing your name and everything and, it’s it that this is still you got to babysit a little bit to make sure to keep leaving the notes because they tend to get a little lax with that. So, but that goes hand in hand with the job crossing because it eliminates the person doing it, having to do any further research.

00:18:32:11 – 00:18:54:03
Unknown
If we just scrap five parts for stupid reasons, you don’t have to research it. You already know, and then you just move on. So yeah, it’s it’s no longer a research issue. It’s a matter of resource having having you dedicating the time to doing it.

00:18:54:04 – 00:18:59:09
Unknown
You.

00:18:59:17 – 00:19:21:03
Unknown
real track was barcode as the track was, it was time tracking. I think it was just keying in the numbers. The third number. Correct. Work order number was.

00:19:21:05 – 00:19:43:03
Unknown
Yes. Yes. Now we have computers at each work center with two monitors, and it just. They love that set. It is well worth the extra hundred dollars. is worth the money.

00:19:43:05 – 00:19:52:07
Unknown
Yes, absolutely.

00:19:52:09 – 00:20:02:06
Unknown
I do. Think.

00:20:02:08 – 00:20:10:15
Unknown
It’s great.

00:20:10:17 – 00:20:42:05
Unknown
Yes. Though the turnover is a little higher than average because some of them still don’t know what they want to do. But we give them a shot of this. You know, and we always welcome them back, that they were good, good workers. And we’ve been doing that serve several years well since before broke up. And some of them are sticking around and doing quite well.

00:20:42:07 – 00:20:47:17
Unknown
Yes.

00:20:47:19 – 00:20:52:21
Unknown
Yes.

00:20:52:22 – 00:21:21:10
Unknown
It’s a marketing company. he’s actually a local celebrity slash marketing company. He’s. He’s going through some things now, so we got, backed off of that a little bit, but we’re fixing to ramp back up on. And he comes out, he does little short clips of he’s a he’s a useful advisor. yeah. I think he calls it a real on Facebook, which is, I guess, the equivalent of a TikTok.

00:21:21:12 – 00:21:28:14
Unknown
That sort of stuff. Folks.

00:21:28:16 – 00:21:39:00
Unknown
Yes.

00:21:39:02 – 00:21:55:00
Unknown
Yeah.

00:21:55:02 – 00:22:14:08
Unknown
I know about invitations, and I know I would be good at it. So I have to outsource that kind of stuff.

00:22:14:09 – 00:22:30:10
Unknown
Right.

00:22:30:12 – 00:22:38:15
Unknown
So.

00:22:38:17 – 00:22:42:16
Unknown
Here’s what.

00:22:42:18 – 00:23:13:04
Unknown
Sticks out to me the most. I guess maybe because I was so intimately involved with it was as the chat is the way that the documents are saved within the system. The process was so time consuming because you had to create the folder structure, the hierarchy of folders. And every time you save the document, you had to navigate to the work order you were associated the document with.

00:23:13:06 – 00:23:38:11
Unknown
Whereas with Pro Shop you just drag it into the work order. Basically at the time. Savings. I wish we had a means to have track that before and after, but it’s still full, easy, gentle doing it this way as opposed to the way we’re doing before it. And that might not be the strongest selling point of Pro Shop, but it’s just what sticks out with me.

00:23:38:11 – 00:24:02:16
Unknown
Because when you demonstrated to me how easy it was to save a document to a work order, I was floored because I knew how much we were spending before on doing this. Those steps. And then they’re prone to mistakes and documents accidentally getting dragged from one folder to another and whatnot, and they just disappeared and nobody knew. So that was that was huge to me.

00:24:02:18 – 00:24:29:03
Unknown
Never be the simplest thing, but it made a big difference to us. Yeah.

00:24:29:05 – 00:24:35:19
Unknown
I think so.

00:24:35:21 – 00:25:06:01
Unknown
I think it’s it’s the whole digital cloud thing. Now, I know some of your clients I’ve spoken to some of them that, don’t want their their documents stored in the cloud as opposed to server. So you have the hybrid system? I opted for the simplest method, which was entirely cloud based. But I also found a way to do a backup of the cloud drive to have a local backup in the event of a catastrophe.

00:25:06:01 – 00:25:52:09
Unknown
So we have both. And it’s working. It’s working very.

00:25:52:11 – 00:26:28:13
Unknown
Yeah.

00:26:28:15 – 00:26:52:08
Unknown
No. We’ve not been asking. We’ve not been asked about that yet. To go. To go beyond anything that would. What we’re doing now, which was. Which is not really hyper secure, I guess, but it’s it’s it’s pretty much whatever everybody does at a minimum. So, I’m not sure. Is that a concern of ours yet? We haven’t branched outside of the oil and gas industry yet.

00:26:52:08 – 00:27:04:09
Unknown
So when that time comes, I’m sure there’ll be issues that we’ll have to address. Yeah.

00:27:04:11 – 00:27:29:12
Unknown
Yes. Actually, the last two audits. One was an API audit two weeks ago in a customer’s audit a week after that, both of them asked, why are we not, diversified outside of the oil field because of the, the the brush up system and our integration to it. this this API audit was the start of which I never understood.

00:27:29:12 – 00:28:00:03
Unknown
But the previous audits, they wanted us to prepare for. So it say five work orders, five purchase orders and whatnot. And then he would use those entries, trace the trail. This last eight. Yeah. It’s doesn’t make sense to me. But this last audit he didn’t want any preparation, which is how I would do it. And we we were lagging a little behind and a lot of the push up integration prior to that audit.

00:28:00:05 – 00:28:31:02
Unknown
But our quality manager decided enough is enough and he wants to get it all in one place. And he forced it through and it just really knocked it out of the park. He was he was extremely impressed. Yes, because everything’s there. You don’t have to search for anything. Of course you know that.

00:28:31:04 – 00:29:02:11
Unknown
Yes. But since we, we were recently certified in October. So this was earlier than the annual. I think he was just in the area, so he decided to knock it out, or they just. It’s just efficiency on airport and.

00:29:02:13 – 00:29:30:00
Unknown
It’s. This is this the our smaller customers? Aren’t they just do a walk through just to say they did the audit. The larger ones like Weatherford and Halliburton’s and those guys, they really sink their teeth into that stuff. So those they’re really impressed again. why are you right? For one of our customers, we were barely on their radar.

00:29:30:02 – 00:29:46:03
Unknown
We a quarter job here and there. But when he saw our capabilities, processes, you know, organized, we were with the information and that he said that they were going to be global on their site within a few weeks. And then.

00:29:46:05 – 00:30:03:14
Unknown
He was. Yeah, it was it was phenomenal just to hear just to hear the compliments. Even if it doesn’t mean anything else. It’s good to tell the employees how well they’re doing. You know, it’s because it’s a team effort. it reflects on the work that everyone’s doing because it’s all being captured in one place.

00:30:03:14 – 00:30:51:22
Unknown
Personally, I don’t work less. But that’s my soul. my wife would say the same thing. Brooklyn Pro Shop has. So I don’t have to focus on making sure the data, the information flow is what it needs to be. I can focus on other things. So personally, I know that’s what the stress is always manageable. So there’s really no less stress.

00:30:52:00 – 00:31:10:00
Unknown
But it enables me to focus my attention on other things that I should be focused on. Because now it’s it’s so close to being 100% integrated that it’s not really a concern anymore, like it was before.

00:31:10:02 – 00:31:22:23
Unknown
Yeah. Yes. That that’s exactly.

00:31:23:01 – 00:31:55:19
Unknown
Sales and growth. Other. I’ve never really, pursued the sales path, but I am starting now and just growing the company. making strategic decisions. Like what? Where to diversify within the oil and gas industry with the certification now is opening so many doors. Do we want, you know, door A or B is it. It’s just what we want, which then determines what sort of equipment, we’re going to be looking at.

00:31:55:21 – 00:32:08:12
Unknown
And that’s really where I should be focused on anyway.

00:32:08:14 – 00:32:33:10
Unknown
Yes, yes, we’re in a good place now. We’re not. Our sales are not what they were a few years ago because we had two locations, but our options are greater. So this is going to this one’s going to be on the other.

00:32:33:11 – 00:32:51:04
Unknown
It was we’ve consolidated, one of the many oilfield downturns. we had to consolidate. We lose spreadsheets and.

00:32:51:06 – 00:32:59:18
Unknown
We’re. Yes.

00:32:59:20 – 00:33:42:05
Unknown
Miss. Feast and famine. And with the options. Now, we can a little better mitigate this. The highs and lows or average them out a little better. And that’s. That’s my goal, you know, diversifying within the oil field and then seeking. Opportunities outside. And there’s there’s plenty of those. We just have to decide which direction we want to take.

00:33:42:07 – 00:34:01:01
Unknown
Emails phone call our I think our website. Everything should be on our website, but it’s down. the same person that’s doing our social media work was working on that. But he had he had a family issue that came up. So he had to take a little break.

00:34:01:03 – 00:34:16:08
Unknown
But. Yes.

00:34:16:10 – 00:34:34:09
Unknown
Oh, absolutely.

00:35:01:19 – 00:35:03:14
Unknown
Thank you.


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