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Bolingbrook, Ill.-based NEUCO, a family-owned and -operated master distributor of HVACR controls, opened a new 145,000-sq.-foot distribution and office facility in earlier this year. “Growth in inventory required us to develop more space to operate,” says Brian Neustadt, vice president of national sales and the third generation within the family business. The company actively stocks more than 53,000 SKU items, which quickly found a home in the new distribution center.
The company began in 1963 and started by carrying one product line. The master distributor now stocks more than 275 HVACR product lines, such as Honeywell, Johnson Controls and Danfoss. NEUCO also stocks replacement parts from OEMs such as Carrier, Trane, Lennox, Rheem and York. With the broad range of product lines and large SKUs, NEUCO provides its customers with a quick turnaround in product needs and delivery — all from one location.
Housing the distribution center and the offices under one roof allows for ease of operation in inventory management and shipping capabilities. The center boasts 21-ft.-high racks, many with small cubbies that allow for all sizes of product to remain organized and within the ease of picking distance. Top-moving items are on racks with flow racking, allowing for an efficient way to pick high-velocity items.
Handheld devices for picking allow for ease in retrieving products in the zoned warehouse and placing items in receiving totes. Those totes roll on a large conveyor system that spans more than 1,000 ft. Once the order is picked, it makes it way down the line where an employee packs it. The order is electronically weighed and sent to the taping and labeling area to one of four machines - each machine can label 1,000 packages per hour. This detailed planning allows for “speed and efficiency, which results in approximately 4,500 packages a day packed, shipped and out the door to awaiting customers,” Neustadt says.
The offices pay homage to the past and celebrate the employees as true team members. Meeting rooms are named after the locations of previous facilities (Thatcher, Lake and Crossroads), and two large wall murals incorporate old photos into artwork showcasing the company’s history. A training room which can hold more than 50 people allows for continuous training and education to keep employees up to date on the distributor’s lines.
With more than 140 employees, “NEUCO consists of a series of integrated teams focused on delivering an extraordinary customer experience with every single order,” says Neustadt. The company has a strong sense of working as team and family unit, from all hands-on deck assisting in the move, to a unique game room in the office which means friendly competition for bragging rights.
During the open house in late June, NEUCO President Paul Neustadt addressed the crowd of customers, employees and well-wishers, thanking the employees for their hard work and commitment to the company. “The move was a bit more involved than we planned,” Paul Neustadt notes. “It was made possible by the incredibly dedicated team we have here. We do a great job here and are positioned going forward to do a better job for our customers. We have high expectations of ourselves, and so we are always raising the bar.”
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