Hillside Custom Cuts Costs, Grows Profits With Paperless Parts and MSC TechMate™
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Hillside Custom Cuts Costs, Grows Profits With Paperless Parts and MSC TechMate™

Location

Berks County, PA

Plan Used

Growth

Processes

CNC MACHINING, SHEET METAL

The Challenge

Hillside Custom's estimators struggled to accurately calculate quotes for their customers' high-value, exceedingly intricate parts, often costing the shop thousands of dollars in unanticipated time and materials.

The Solution

TechMate™ enables on-demand metalworking support via the ITAR-compliant, cloud-native Paperless Viewer from Paperless Parts, with secure file sharing and direct connection to MSC’s metalworking professionals.

The Results

  • TechMate™ reduces Hillside Custom’s RFQ response time by 24 hours, as they’re able to return even the most complex requests a full day earlier.

  • Hillside Custom is able to lessen the pain of the labor shortage by training less-skilled employees to estimate quickly and efficiently.

  • Hillside Custom implements MSC TechMate™ to engage the MSC metalworking team on recommendations for enhanced quality, cost, and efficiency, leading to increased profit margins.

Background

Founded in 1992, Hillside Custom delivers manufacturing solutions with an emphasis on excellent customer relationships. From their 75,000-square-foot facility in Morgantown, Pennsylvania, Hillside Custom supports the entire project lifecycle from prototype to production.

Hillside Custom works with multiple industries including aerospace, automotive, food and beverage, medical, military, and pharmaceutical, offering expert-quality machining, fabrication, assembly, and 3D printing work.

Challenge

Hillside Custom’s customers love the shop’s expansive service options. But complex jobs required equally complex quotes, and estimators often struggled to make accurate calculations.

“Capturing the true cost of each job is imperative,” says Cassidy Fink, Hillside Custom’s Sales and Customer Relations Manager. Like most shops, Hillside Custom’s overhead budget accounts for costs like stock tooling, but expenses soar when a job requires specialty tooling or other customizations.

“When an estimator overlooks a line item like specialty tooling on a smaller job, that job runs Hillside Custom into the red and costs us money,” Cassidy explains.

After completing one particularly complex job with an unfamiliar superalloy, Hillside Custom found themselves holding the bill for nearly $10,000 in unanticipated tooling. Something had to change.

Solution

Cassidy was intrigued to learn about TechMate™. Developed by MSC and integrated into the ITAR-compliant, cloud-native Paperless Viewer from Paperless Parts, the free application provides on-demand metalworking support to manufacturers.

Hillside Custom already trusted MSC as their materials supplier. However, the shop rarely reached out to MSC’s metalworking team for manufacturing recommendations. Previous conversations with the metalworking professionals lacked clarifying visual context, and Hillside Custom’s turnaround goals made in-person evaluations impractical.

Hillside Custom’s team now enjoys immediate, secure file sharing and communication with MSC’s metalworking professionals. The TechMate™ application empowers quick and accurate recommendations, project troubleshooting, and production guidance at no added cost to the shop.

Results

With MSC TechMate™ and Paperless Parts, Hillside Custom:

  1. Cuts 24 hours from their RFQ response time. Thanks to TechMate™, Hillside Custom generates even the most complex quotes a full day earlier than before. “TechMate™ makes quoting easier and faster than ever!”
  2. Can quickly train new employees to estimate. Cassidy raves about one unexpected time-saving benefit in particular: faster onboarding. “Our less-experienced estimators love TechMate™ because it’s so easy to get their quotes reviewed; they learn from MSC metalworking team’s feedback,” she explains. “TechMate™ lessens the pain of the current labor shortage and helps bridge skill gaps for our newer estimators.”
  3. Dramatically increases profit margins. After receiving a new RFQ for a complex part, Hillside Custom’s estimator opened TechMate™ to begin building the quote. “The customer wanted a specialty material that Hillside Custom doesn’t work with every day—one that could cost anywhere from $100-$2,000 in tooling, depending on a number of factors,” Cassidy shares. After communicating with an MSC metalworking professional through TechMate™, the estimator not only honed in on an accurate materials quote but also gained insight into the part’s machining process. The totality of this support allowed Hillside Custom to profit off the job and perform the work with maximum efficiency.

“TechMate™ is an extremely valuable resource,” states Cassidy. “It’s right at our employees’ fingertips for easy collaboration between departments, and it’s a cost-savings tool across the board.”

In fact, Hillside Custom finds new TechMate™ advantages at every turn. From estimators to CNC programmers, everyone at the shop can access TechMate™ to research materials, discuss tooling options, and adopt new techniques.

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Cassidy Fink

TechMate™ allows us to easily evaluate any tools or material for value, efficiency, and overall quality—and those insights support our unwavering commitment to unmatched quality and customer care.