Laverne spoke to André Swartbooi, a Director at the Acoustex Group, to gain insight into the strategies, goals and values that the Acoustex Group has adopted in order to be successful in the Automotive Industry, despite all the current challenges. Acoustex has been honored as the recent winner of the prestigious Exporter of the Year Award 2022.
André explained that the COVID pandemic was used as an opportunity to change and do things differently at Acoustex:
“What COVID told us was: You need to change the way you are doing things – Because if you stay the same, in 5 years’ time, you’re not going to be around anymore!”
Acoustex, like so many other manufacturers, had customers applying more and more pressure on them to automate everything. The required changes had to ensure that once the customer placed an order for something, the supplier could be confident that this information was fed into their production systems and that their shop floor teams were immediately aware of what needed to be produced in the next few hours.
André added that, from a management standpoint, introducing more automation in your processes can even serve as a form of business security:
“You must not forget that the people working in your company have a life outside of the company… Sometimes [their] focus isn’t always there if you don’t automate. That extra 0 in data capturing can be catastrophic. That’s where the [automated] system also helps. It’s a safeguard to protect your business in the long run.”