Jean publishes a blog called the Enterprise Corner. It features articles on entrepreneurship, local industry trends, manufacturing news and periodic ‘toolbox’ articles showcasing assistance, incentives and other resources for local businesses.
This month our Industry Roundtable group toured Ace Hardware’s distribution center in Moxee. At 880,000 square feet it is one of the largest buildings in Yakima County. It’s easy to spot if you are heading out Highway 24.
The facility is one of 15 Ace distribution centers in the U.S. It supports over 350 Ace retailers in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska. Jeff Scott, Retail Support Manager explained that Ace is a cooperative owned by its retailers. Thus, the center is not just a distribution center but a hub for supporting its owner retailers. “Making our stores successful is our primary objective”. With that mission the Ace brand isthriving and the center is busier than ever. Each year they receive numerous awards for exceptional quality, customer service and charitable giving.
Jeff shared some fun facts with the group this morning:
The facility ranks first in overall safety and second in overall productivity among Ace’s distribution centers. We witnessed how supplies are brought in at one end of the building, placed into inventory, and then ultimately picked off the shelves for outbound shipments to retailers.
Ace’s compensation rewards productivity. According to Scott, “The more productive an employee becomes the higher the pay incentive they can earn each week”. This program has kept their turnover low and helped them to retain and promote their high performers. Their new truck driver training program is also well under way and becoming a successful model to address the truck driver shortage.
Our office helped Ace find the site in Moxee to support their new center. We also helped find over $1 million to fund needed utility improvements for this facility. New Vision was pleased to help keep Ace’s distribution center in our Valley – they are a great employer who does a lot for our community.