Products in Reynosa
Cequent Electrical Products belongs to Horizon Global, operative group in design, manufacture and commercialization of a wide range of accessories for trucks, sports vehicles, recreational vehicles, tourism and all kind of tows.
Their headquarters are in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and arrived to the Villa Florida Park in Reynosa in October 2011.
This plant is known as the metals division and is dedicated to the manufacture of hitches, one part is used when – for example – it will be hooked to a trailer, it is the accessory in the rear part of the vehicle (usually we see this in pickups.)
The manufacturing process of each part is unique and a little difficult, since it implies welding and there is a lot of aversion to the material what represents a new challenge every day.
In addition of hitches, at Cequent they do jacks, which are the part that enables – once the trailer is dismounted from the truck – leveling it to the floor. From that product there are jacks used in trailer boxes; jacks for agricultural equipment and for other uses.
The company is divided in two sections: Aftermarket allows obtaining parts in stores such as AutoZone or self-service stores, and where Cequent manufactures hundreds of different part numbers.
The second section is the one known as OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer,) which goes directly to automotive assemblers and of which a less number is manufactured.
Cequent has a daily production capability of 4,500 hitches and 2,500 jacks, reaching monthly figures – for example in June 2018 – of 67,000 strains.
Juan Enrique Villarreal, plant manager at Cequent Electrical Products, Planta Metals in Reynosa, said that this company has plants around the world and that significantly participates in the European market. It also has plants located in Asia, but the corporate has seen that due to the geographical proximity of Reynosa with its customers in the United States, makes them having a competitive advantage regarding the plants located in China and other places.
We participate in different markets, being the largest the one from the automotive industry and our customers are: Ford, Toyota, and NISSAN, among others.
Automation provides predictability; with this the company has the capability of producing in constant amount with a minimum of surprises, and this basically guarantees that week after week shipments can be made in a continuous and uniform manner.
Automation is an important part of Cequent, it currently has 10 robotized cells, since some of its customers require that this company has 100 percent automation; however, this automation needs maintenance, service and calibration done by technicians of the own plant.
Projects in Reynosa
Juan Villarreal has 32 years of career in the manufacture industry, and his entrance to Cequent is recent, and the main projects inside Cequent Electrical Products include improving productivity.
“We have a big challenge on this part, for June they achieved making the difference and we started to see some of the areas in positive numbers, this provides a satisfaction to this plant management,” said Juan Villarreal.
In a medium term, the company focuses its goals in lean manufacture, with quick changes, since on its kind of welding, lathes, presses and dies in general requires hours to fulfill the model change, therefore they are working to achieve those changes in minutes instead of hours.
In addition, there is a project that has been implemented in other plants, and it is about high performance equipment in which it is intended to involve the entire personnel of the plant with continuous improvement, safety improvements, quality improvements and in costs.
Finally, Juan Villarreal said: “let us keep in mind that the workforce in Tamaulipas and the management teams in all companies in this State are competing worldwide and we have to be better every day, and this, although slowly will take us to success in a long term.”
Without doubt it is the workforce used in this company, said Juan Villarreal, since it needs to be qualified due to the kind of work done in this plant at the welding area, as special skills are required which go beyond the usual assembly work that can be observed in most of the manufacturing companies located in Reynosa.
People, the most important resource in a company
Although the corporate slogan is “One team and one goal,” in the human resources area of this company in Reynosa, the philosophy to be implemented is “Because we want to see you happy.”
“Everything we do is for the sake of our employees and we are talking about the service and attention to our people as part of the philosophy; obviously we have a service approach, practices our people enjoys,” said Galvan.
And one example is the program they have implemented for the sake of their personnel with the “Wellbeing” area in which they have a nutritionist that provides consultation to every employee wanted to change his/her life and improve eating habits.
“Those dedicated to human resources are focused in common areas such as compensation area, organizational development or training, or legal areas; however, the focus is the engine; is to make people agents of change, for them to be motivated and enjoy their work with passion,” said Maria Galvan.