Belfast company saves £700,000 through improved processes

Invest Northern Ireland has helped a Castlereagh-based packaging company to save £700,000 through an ongoing process improvement initiative.

MSO Cleland provides a comprehensive range of innovative packaging solutions such as labels and cartons to clients from a variety of industries throughout the Republic of Ireland and the UK.

The huge savings resulted from the company’s participation in an Invest NI programme which aimed to streamline procedures and increase profitability. A Business Improvement Agent, dedicated to developing more efficient practices, was appointed for the 3 year duration of the scheme and aimed to achieve savings of at least 3 times his salary each year. The agent at MSO Cleland significantly exceeded this target.

Costs were reduced by improving processes in various functions of the business including manufacturing, administration, security and staff training.

Victor Jordan, Invest NI’s Director of Business Improvement Services, said: “MSO Cleland has realised the sustainable benefits of re-evaluating its operations and introducing more efficient procedures. It is crucial that companies of all sizes continually consider new ways to operate in order to ensure business efficiency and increased profitability, especially as the costs of neglecting process improvement can often be hidden.

“By addressing a number of issues such as workplace layout and equipment maintenance, even the most operationally adept organisations can save money and improve their overall operating performance.”

Noel Branagh, Managing Director of MSO Cleland, said: “As a result of the programme of continuous improvement, we now have a much leaner operation at MSO Cleland. We used video analysis in some functions of the business in order to identify areas that needed attention, before making improvements to achieve savings.

“Changes to our MIS systems have resulted in cost savings for the company, and we have increased our production speed whilst maintaining our high quality standards.”

“We have also introduced new waste recycling procedures which are more cost effective, and we have discovered different methods of operation to actually reduce overall levels of waste,” added Mr Branagh.

The project was part funded by the European Union’s European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).