Companies are returning to varying degrees of normality. We are no exception here at Cadillac Plastic. For us, our interim ISO audit was due, with processes and procedures to be inspected by our certifying body.
Cadillac Plastic currently holds three ISO certificates:
Covid restrictions had seen the temporary suspension of visiting auditors who check the documentation and conduct interviews with staff. In fact, our full re-certification in January 2021 was completed entirely remotely using video meetings and conference calls.
Our Interim ISO Audit
This year, we had initially planned for an in-person audit, welcoming back live auditors to the office. However, remote auditing is still in operation and, in late September, we supplied the auditors with the procedures files and prepared for an intensive 2 day series of meetings to cover all business areas.
Some of you may have called to speak to the accounts team during this period. We thank you for your patience during this time.
The audits covered all aspects of business from Training and First Aid through to, Collections, Deliveries and Waste Management. We even used video calling to allow the auditor to “Walk-through” the office and warehouse space. This allowed them to see the flow of information and interaction from customer to order to dispatch and invoicing.
We are pleased to report that we have successfully completed the audit retaining our certifications. This was achieved without any non-conformities. You can check our certifications using the SGS Certified Client Directory, which we have linked from the ISO logos on our “About Us” page >>>
If you need copies of our ISO Certificates for your files please speak to your account manager, call the office on 01793 648500, or use the Contact Us page.
On the 24th September the 3rd and final event of our planned customer events took place at the Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb. This was the long awaited Members Day event.
What is a Members Day
The Members’ Day is a great opportunity to experience the hill in a relaxed, controlled and fun atmosphere. Guests are invited to drive their own cars, up the famous Shelsley Walsh track, during a day of non-competitive runs. Any road-legal cars are able to participate, including kit cars and classic sports cars as well as everyday standard saloons.
Who attended with Cadillac
Cadillac General Manager, Simon Jones, took to the hill in his track ready MX5 Turbo. Tony and Liz Burd (RH Technical) brought along a very nice example of a 1975 Dolomite Sprint. Tony has lovingly restored this car over many years and relished the opportunity to blast it up the hill.
John and Louise Wills (Will Prints) treated us to a 1933 Morgan 3 wheeler. John was able to get the Morgan to lift a wheel on the corners during his runs. However, he usually rides motorbikes and feels more comfortable on 2 wheels than 3.
Other attendees on the day included Alistair Kennedy (Cadillac Director) in his Maserati, and Sam Gothorp (Preservation Equipment) who had intended to bring along his Mercedes AMG. Unfortunately last minute issues prevented it from being available, and so he attended as a passenger.
Also attending as a passenger for the day was motor sport fan James Wright representing 3M, a supplier of adhesive products to Cadillac Plastic.
Some Images from the Event
Each driver had 6 runs on the hill throughout the day and while none of the runs was timed, video suggested the Morgan managed a run of around 58 seconds. John was thrilled to break the 60 second barrier in the oldest car at the event.
The weather on the day was again kind and we enjoyed a fine day of racing. Cars included classic Mini Coopers and Morgans to modern Mitsubishi EVO’s and F1 style hill racers.
Spectators were also able to try their luck with an F1 simulator. This allowed them to set track times around a virtual Silverstone. Mike Page of Rudd Macnamara managed to set a decent lap time and remained in the top ten throughout the day, earning him the title of "Driving Legend".
Gallery of Cars and Guests at Shelsley Walsh Autumn Speed Finale
The best time on the hill was by Allan Warburton in his Gould GR59 racing car (1600cc). He managed a stunning 25.62 seconds on his first run and 25.97 seconds on his second run. There is a full list of runners and riders on the Shelsley Walsh website, along with the times and winners. Click Here >>> (scroll to the bottom of the page for the Speed Finale on the 18th Sept)
Many thanks to all our guests. Its was great to see you all out and about and we look forward to more events in the future.
In this post, we highlight some of the reasons behind the recent slew of material price increases and look at some of the things you can do that might help limit their impact.
It will not have escaped your notice that we have recently been experiencing a number of price increases from various suppliers. These have been across a wide range of products.
There are many factors currently affecting prices and most are related to the Covid pandemic. These include raw material shortages, high product demand, reduced shipping capacity, increased delivery costs and even staff shortages leading to reduced production capacity.
These factors have all been covered in the press over the previous weeks, some of which can be found below.
Manufacturers can often absorb some of these costs in the short term, at least partially, but while margins continue to be eroded, it is inevitable that price increases will continue to be introduced.
Regretfully, in these uncertain times, it is not always possible to predict or mitigate these increases. At the moment we are certainly not dealing with 'annual' or 'inflationary' type increases. If we were, there would be perhaps more room to challenge internal manufacturing costs and efficiencies. Nevertheless, Cadillac Plastic will continue to work with its supplier partners to minimise and delay price increases.
It is also Cadillac Plastic policy to to give advanced notice of price increases to any affected customers, by letter or email. We will continue to give a 30 day notice period of any increases, even where our own prices increase immediately.
What we can all do?
Many of these factors are outside our control, but there are practical steps we can all take to help the situation. Here are our top 5 tips that may help to manage and reduce the impact of price increases and material availability.
1: Plan ahead
Some of our largest customers plan deliveries up to a year in advance, and while not everyone is able to do this, we recommend that you talk to key customers about extended lead times and demand forecasts. Whilst we pride ourselves on excellent service and short delivery times, we are always happy to work to scheduled deliveries ahead of time.
2: Understand Future Demand
Understanding and anticipating future demand increases gives confidence to hold working stock of key items. After all, you cannot sell what you don’t have. Increasing your stock holdings and anticipating demand, means you are better placed to manage longer lead times from suppliers.
3: Minimise Wastage
Cadillac Plastic converts many products from master rolls and supplies custom sizes, reducing waste and generating cost savings. We do not charge for this service. Check the sizes you are buying. If you are ordering standard sheet sizes, you may be wasting more than you need to. Speak to us for advice on material yield and wastage. We will check to ensure you are getting the best yield possible for your requirements.
4: Alternative Materials
We hold stock of hundreds of types of material, from some of the biggest and most trusted manufacturers. Materials are available in a wide range of thicknesses, finishes and material properties. There may be an alternative product available, perhaps better suited to your application. Alternatives may also provide reduced lead times or increase cost savings.
5: Speak to Us
We are real people at Cadillac, and our knowledgeable Internal Sales Team are always happy to discuss your requirements. Remember, we are experts in all types of filmic and adhesive materials and will recommend the most suitable materials. We work closely with our suppliers and material manufacturers to provide information and insight about products that would best suit your application.
What Happens if Material Prices Fall?
Finally, we hope and expect that some of the factors leading to price increases will eventually relax and prices will start to come down. It is Cadillac Plastic policy to pass on price reductions in the same way, so as a customer, you can be assured of fair pricing combined with our trademark excellent service.
On July 17th, Cadillac Plastic invited guests to attend our first corporate event for about 18 Months. If you know Cadillac Plastic well, you may know that Alistair Kennedy, Managing Director, has an interest in classic cars.
What you may not know is that Simon Jones, our (relatively) new General Manager, is also a ‘petrolhead’. He competes at hill climb and sprint events, including Shelsley Walsh.
It may not come as much of a surprise then that as more events are going ahead, this first event was a car related one.
The Oldest Racing Venue in the World!
Shelsley Walsh Hill Climb is credited as THE oldest motor racing venue in the UK and even the world. It is still staged on the original course were it was first held in 1905.
The event we visited was a Classic Nostalgia Day, with all kinds of cars from the 40’s to the 90’s in attendance. Many of the owners and visitors had dressed in period appropriate clothing, giving the day a festival atmosphere.
Being an outside event, there were not too many restrictions on the day. Racing fans and car enthusiasts could look around the cars and speak with teams in the paddock. Masks had to be worn in this area however.
Cadillac Plastic and 3M had invited several customers. All guests were able to access the paddock area to view the cars. Guests also had access to Members-only viewing and refreshment areas, placed at strategic points around the site.
A Simple 1000 Yard Course
The venue itself is deep in the Worcestershire countryside, with the track a little under a kilometre in length (or 1000 yards in old money). Competitors must simply drive up the track (12 feet wide) from the start to the finish, in the shortest possible time. With a vertical rise of 100 meters (328 feet), and an average gradient of 1:9.14 (max gradient 1:6.24) that’s no mean feat in a ‘classic’. However many of the drivers will do this at speeds approaching 100mph.
The on-track action started around 9am and 3 wheelers and classic minis tackled the hill one after the other. Other classes included old Formula 5000 cars and even classic WRC rally cars from the 80’s, 90’s and 2000’s.
The weather was on our side, and ensured plenty of visitors were happy to be at an outside event. Most were happy to sit and watch the action from the viewing areas around the top and bottom “S” bends. These viewing areas benefited from shade provided by the tall trees as temperatures hit the low thirties in the open.
Invited Guests of Cadillac and 3M
We were able to meet up with all of the Cadillac Plastic and 3M guests for a chat throughout the day and would like to thank HOLBOURNE INDUSTRIAL PLASTICS, TT ELECTRONICS, and PTM DESIGN for attending with us.
We hope to make a return trip to Shelsley Walsh later this year and still have a few spaces available for the two events planned for September (Autumn finale and Members day).
If you would like to attend one of these event with us, please drop us a line.