FFEI Ltd has scooped the top SME accolade at the Mechanical Engineers Manufacturing Excellence Awards 2012, having won the award for Best Small to Medium Enterprise. The award recognises the innovative business ideas and best practice employed within FFEI, along with the companys continued growth since an oil disaster affected its HQ in Hemel Hempstead in 2006.
FFEIs entire plant was destroyed as a result of the Buncefield Oil Depot Disaster, but within a matter of days the company was able to fulfil existing and new orders, said Philippa Oldham, Head of Manufacturing at the Institution of Mechanical Engineers and one of the Manufacturing Excellence judges.
Since this emergence from the disaster, FFEI has continued to grow and the judges were hugely impressed by novel schemes the company runs, such as the offer of extended warranties in exchange for feedback. These are in addition to the companys excellent factory layout and the continued improvement in financial performance.
This latest plaudit follows a recent string of awards won by FFEI for its innovation, enterprise and representation of forward-thinking British manufacturing. In 2011, FFEI received a Queens Award for Enterprise in the Innovation category for the development of an internal drum Computer-to-plate (CTP) solution specifically targeted at the requirements of commercial printing in emerging markets.
Over the past six years the organisation has invested heavily in creating a company that innovates with diverse technologies across global markets, said Andy Cook, FFEI Managing Director.
The award was presented to FFEI by Professor Isobel Pollock, President of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, at a ceremony compered by former politician Michael Portillo.
Manufacturing Excellence, run by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, is the most successful and long established manufacturing business improvement programme in the UK, and the only one that provides a detailed benchmarking and assessment process to help improve manufacturing businesses.