Have you HERD
The Official Newsletter of HERD North America
The Road Ahead
In the Rear View
By Bryan Gulebian
In the Rear View
By Bryan Gulebian, President
Summer is here and things are heating up! Back to the Future is in full swing and our Production Team is making great progress toward hitting our thematic goal on a daily basis. Everyone is doing their part in helping us hit our goals and it's exciting to see the progress. Make sure you let the Production Team members know you appreciate their efforts! We are heading into the midst of summer when we usually see a slowdown and it seems we are still selling full steam ahead! Great job to John and his team for staying focused and helping our customers each day. Let's put the pedal to the metal and keep on truckin'!
By Mike Saunders, Director of Facilities
As I mentioned last month, 2 new rotary screw compressors have been ordered and are due to arrive at the end of June. After a number of conversations with different folks and analysis from an outside Structural Engineer, We have decided to build a platform on top of the current welding bays in B6 to place the compressors. The Engineering firm was satisfied that the crane structure will support the floor system and the compressor equipment we want to install. Kelly Klassen will construct the floor and the perimeter railing. More-Lite Electric will supply and hoot up power. Jim and his team will coordinate plumbing and new machines into the compressed air system. Once these machines are online, we will then work on moving the compressor in B2 to this new location in B6 as well. This will keep 3 of our machines together in a central location where we have a large demand for air and reduce the noise level in the B2 Training Room and Engineering office.I am planning to have the 2 new compressors online by the end of July and then work on moving the B2 compressor after that. Have a great month of June!
By Dave Gata, Director of Operations
I hope everyone enjoyed the pizza lunch last month! Rick and Morty by now should be passed off to Production and be able to run all C4-02s, Defender straight bars, and Texas channels. Robotics will be moving onto newly named R2-D2 and C-3PO to get them production-ready this upcoming month.Things have been steady with Production producing at a good rate and looking at future increases, and the supply chain has done well with bringing in materials and consumables. The supply chain recently added Fastenal to our Vendor Managed Inventory, which will now take over all C4-02 and all Grille Guard related hardware. This will hopefully eliminate a lot of the shortages that have been happening and sounds like these hardware packs will be pre-kitted! The planning team has been working hard at scheduling and planning and things seem to be settling in well with supply chain planning and executing, and production has been given an achievable schedule to accomplish. I hope June brings us some warmer weather as I'm sure you're all just as sick of the rain as everyone else is. See you at the lunch this month!
Finance and IT
By Robert Vandenbyllaardt, Director of Finance and Business Systems
May is coming along nicely. We are now at a point where we are building our Grille Guard inventory so we can service our 10 or fewer customers in a timely manner. At the time of writing, we are near our shipment target to Truck Guards and passed our target for Grille Guards with 21 to go on Cab Guards. It's looking like another good month for revenues. In IT, we have continued to rewire and clean up our old server room and began the task of hooking up R2-D2 and C-3PO to our network. Accounting has spent a lot of time collecting money from our dealers and troubleshooting some cost of goods sold issues (COGS). While projects continue to forge ahead on the connectivity of the website redesign, configurations, and improvements in Acumatica and our new production scheduling system, Lynq. Also a sneak preview for June, we have planned our Acumatica upgrade to the 2021 R2 version which is slated to be tested and turned on by June 24th. This is necessary to get onto a supported version and for our upcoming improvements planned in production scheduling and accounting for our other companies, namely HERD Transport LLC, HERD Transport Canada, and HERD USA. None of this work gets to happen unless we keep those bumpers going out the door! Go HERD!
By Devynn Kiesman, Marketing Administrator
Lots of exciting things happening for us in Marketing! You may have seen on big change on the lot with our brand new Digital Sign which has been installed under our HERD sign (along Springfield Road). I am working on setting up a schedule so the content will switch every so often. So far we think it looks great and I'm looking forward to playing with some more of the software's elements!On social media, we hit our goal of 1000 followers by the end of May on TikTok! I've been having a great time coming up with fun content for this platform. Some of our best-performing videos have, unfortunately, "violated community guidelines" but I'm continuing to use current trends and sounds to gain engagement. I am currently working on getting a "swag bag" together to send to future influencers as well as creating a list of users who already promote our products without us asking. I'm looking at mainly TikTok and Instagram for these users. This will only continue to grow trust in our brand and expand our reach across all social platforms as a whole. Tonio has been working hard on getting the photos and renderings done for the new website. We continue to see progress and we will be getting Risdall the content and images very soon and then we will be getting trained on the backend of the site.
By John Creelman, Sales Director
May was another solid month for Truck Guard sales and Grille Guard sales. In May, we sold well over 600 Truck Guards, 550 Grille Guards, and 15 Cab Guards. We were also able to sell 1180 units which exceeded our total unit sales by 70 units!We were successful in the rollout and execution of the Grille Guard price increases to our customers while applying the increases to any orders shipping after July 1st. We have been making some good progress on our Thematic Goal of reducing our lead times both on Truck Guards and Grille Guards. Most of our more transactional (1-10) Grille Guard orders will now be shipping out before the end of summer versus the previous April 2023 lead time, a very pleasant surprise for many of our customers. The Showcase Trailer is starting to fill some dates on the calendar with some events planned with our dealers over the summer. So far we have confirmed 6 dates and stops for the trailer over the summer. Lastly, we have brought on 2 new agencies in the USA to represent our Grille Guards, Cab Guards, and Pickup Guards. These new agencies will be covering areas around the Great Lakes and New York/New Jersey. I hope everyone has a great June and start to the summer. After record cold, record snow, and record flooding, I am ready for a few months of hot and sunny weather! The Social Committee had another busy and fun month planning out our events along with another staff giveaway. We were able to combine both events into one special day. We had our first HERD Company Lunch in almost 2.5 years! Pizza was ordered in from Little Pizza Heaven and was a big hit as we went through 200 pizzas over the course of the day. We also executed another successful HERD Branding Event, with the distribution of more t-shirts for all HERD Team members. Our June event is just around the corner, we will be having another company lunch on Wednesday, June 15th. We will be breaking out the barbeques and serving up burgers, hot dogs, and other summertime favorites.
By Kristin Lindsley, Freight and Transportation Manager
The Rogers warehouse has hired a new employee his name is Paul Bongiovanni. He will be helping out with orders in the warehouse. Our two new drivers have been working out fantastic, they are doing a wonderful job for HERD. I am trying to find one more driver to work for us and then we will have all our trucks filled.We want to thank Mike Cousins for helping from May 16 through May 20 while Diana was on vacation. We appreciate his help. Thank you for letting us borrow him, John. According to the American Trucking Association's Freight Forecast for 2022, there's likely to be a 24% increase in national trucking freight volume. As a result, this means a collective revenue increase of up to 67%. Of course, the companies responsible for overseeing these shipments will directly benefit as a result. What does that mean for HERD? That means to expect delays in shipments. What used to take a few days to arrive at a customer might take a little bit longer due to the increase in volume and the decrease of trucks, trailers, and drivers that are available. Also, expect an increase in pricing. With supply and demand pricing will likely increase. The price of diesel has been going up, affecting the price of freight. Prices per gallon (USD) from January of 2020 until current day:
By Tom Albig, Director of Engineering and Curtis Camara
The month of May finally saw some spring-like weather! It also saw the completion of the adjustments to our project management tools for Current Product Development and Active New Product Development. These initiatives involved the closure of many projects that were still in our system, some clarity with our prioritization of existing projects, and development towards our ability to track project status/due date. We also welcomed Willem Labun to our team as a full-time HERD employee in May - a very exciting addition!In Active New Product Development, we completed the box redesigns for both the C4-02 and L2-02 (also Thematic Goal items) and got back to the MATS show truck accessories initiatives with a market study refresher on all four projects as a predecessor to full-blown product design. Also in our queue is Bracket/Sub-mount Commonality and improvements to the AeroPLUS Slam Latch. The Prospective New Product Development program also made progress in May with the completion of a draft management program and the identification of all potential projects. The management program will be completed in June, including the prioritization of these strategic items. We did start on one of them, beginning a feasibility study on truck Electric Auxiliary Power Unites (EAPU) as a possible next project. In Current Product Development, the team worked alongside the New Product Development team to redesign the C4-02 and L2-02 Boxes as part of our Thematic Goal efforts. We also completed several other Thematic Goal initiatives related to jig and fi\xture design improvements, alternative material analysis, and other product design improvements. Thanks to the entire engineering team for all of their hard work on these initiatives! Some CI initiatives were also completed including incorporating assembly error-proofing into the design of the IN27C4-02 Submounts and revising some AeroLT Bracket parts to make use of standard in-house steel sheet metal thicknesses. An AeroLT PLUS design for the 2019+ RAM 1500 classic, the DG13L2-02 was recently released, thank you to TJ and Phil! Over the coming months, we'll start to see some exciting new designs released for the Toyota Tundra, Ford Ranger, Nissan Frontier, and the Jeep Wrangler JK to name a few. The Current Product Development team recently took on and completed the task of creating completely new, and more accurate CAD models and marketing renderings for all of our products. This will ensure that the product images our customers see on our website more closely match the actual products they'll be receiving. Great work by Phil in getting this project done! And last but not least, the Engineering Team is excited to finally have our own shop space in B2, including our own dedicated R&D bay, and storage space for tools and other commonly-used equipment. A big Thank you to Dave Gata and Mike Saunders for reconfiguring the Production space, and their teams for making this happen!
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