SUCCESS STORY

 

 
 

Client Profile:

Lane Home Furnishings Awarded "Vendor of the Year"


Company Profile:
The Lane Company, founded in 1912 as Red Cedar Chest Company, purchased Tupelo, Mississippi-based Action Industries in 1972, and is now know as Lane Furniture Industries Inc. Lane Home Furnishings, whose parent company is Furniture Brands International, sells direct to end users through Lane Home Furnishings' retail stores and supplies other retailers with their Lane branded products. Lane is the world’s largest manufacturer of motion furniture and the second largest manufacturer of recliners.

Situation:
Lane, like many furniture manufacturers, faced a very competitive environment. To establish a competitive edge with their number one buyer, J.C. Penney, Lane wanted to ensure that quality standards met and exceeded the buyer's expectations. J.C. Penney requires rigorous quality control checks that lead to continuous process improvement through extensive front-line employee training on quality measures. The continuous quality testing and training would be very costly, so Lane requested assistance from the Mississippi Manufacturing Extension Partnership Center at Itawamba Community College (ICC), a NIST MEP network affiliate partner.

Solution:
The MEP.ms Center at ICC, Lane workforce training project, included the J.C. Penney Quality Audit training. All lines of the plant were involved. Training was specific to vendor specifications and geared towards continuous quality improvements. Throughout the year, 68 people received 467 hours of training; 30 people received 255 hours of training; 30 people received 480 hours of training; and 15 people received 232 hours of training. Lane was named the J.C. Penney "Vendor of the Year" in recognition of Lane's outstanding service to J.C. Penney through merchandising leadership, product development, quick response, quality standards and marketing competitiveness. MEP.ms Center at ICC, received significant credit in Lane receiving this award thereby helping to secure business for Lane Furniture Industries.

Results:
* 143 employees received 1,434 hours of J.C. Penney Quality Audit training. * Awarded J. C. Penney "Vendor of the Year."

Testimonial:
“Itawamba Community College, an MEP.ms Center, has been a valuable source for recruiting new employees to the company and for training our existing workforce. Their educational programs have been a major factor in helping Lane Furniture Industries stay competitive in the “ever changing” market place.”
Jay Hughes
, Director, Human Resources