To complete the certification programs, the company’s facility, its designers and its fabricators all had to meet strict standards during a year-long series of inspections and quality management audits.
“The API licensing and certification is proof of the rigorous procedures and quality control that has gone into the design and fabrication of each Western Fabrication oil drilling substructure and walking systems,” said Chris Mayeda, managing owner of WFC.
“Achieving the certification has been a huge help,” Schuening added. “Internally, it helped increase our focus on improved processes and maintaining higher quality. Externally, we have become more marketable.”
In addition to the certification, Schuening cited diversification and relationships as keys to their success. By covering a range of industries including oil and gas, wind energy, logging and pulp and paper mills, WFC is able to adapt changes in the market, he said.
“Oil and gas projects have grown as a focus for us, Schuening added. “We like to do our part in making the industry more efficient – our systems can do that. I’d love to see America become more energy independent. I like to think we help to do that.”
Partnering with the engineering and manufacturing specialists at Entro Industries, which is based in Hillsboro, has been another component of WFC’s success. The two companies have been closely working together since 2010.
“We expand through our relationship with Entro. It is important to establish confidence and trust. Your partners have to know you are going to get the job done and on time,” Schuening said.
“[We share] a truly unique relationship of mutual success as both companies are growing at rapid rates,” said Shawn Smith, PE, president of Entro. “The nature of the industry is one where a high level of quality is necessary for long-term success, and now, with the latest certifications that Western Fabrication has attained, Entro is able to deliver these in our next generation of products.”
The success of WFC has created a ripple effect in the region, as the company buys quality, local components when they can.
“Entro buys all of their hydraulic hoses from a company in Longview,” Schuening noted.
Backed by flexibility, quality and exceptional relationships, Western Fabrication is enjoying their growth spurt in 2014.When asked about what’s next for the company, Schuening said, “Take a breath and prepare ourselves for the next growth spurt, if there is a gap between the two.”