Ultraframe scoops top factory award

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IF you produce the best conservatory systems in the business, it's only right you should have the best factory to do it in.

Clitheroe-based conservatory giant Ultraframe ticks both those boxes after winning the "Best Engineering Plant" section of the 2007 Best Factory Awards.

Over the past three years, Ultraframe's Enterprise Works, at Salthill Road, has increased productivity and product flow, while reducing inventory levels and absenteeism. A review of operations has led to significant improvements in performance, recognised and praised by the BFA judges.

Now in their 16th year, the awards stand apart because of their rigorous judging procedures, which examine every aspect of operational and manufacturing management performance. There is a detailed entry procedure which encourages businesses to evaluate every aspect of their operation, followed by an in-depth judging visit where the business is measured by experts.

Those shortlisted for the various categories were invited to an awards ceremony in London. Overall "Factory of the Year" winner was the Reckitt Benckiser Healthcare factory, Hull, which was also awarded top honours in the Process Plant and People Management categories.

Chris Rowlands, judge and editor of Works Management, said: "What stood out for me this year has been the real thirst for improvement shown by so many manufacturers. These companies are using every avenue possible to secure valuable tips and insight, they are on a quest – and those that step up to the challenge are clearly reaping the rewards."

For more on the awards, visit www.bestfactoryawards.co.uk