Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016 - 114


South

mills manufacturing

the fact that mills manufacturing
does not outsource any of its
work means it can keep a tight
control on quality.

developed over the years, and Oswald says the company ensures that
its parachutes are the best they can be
because it keeps every aspect of the
manufacturing process in-house. Its
175,000-square-foot manufacturing
facility in Asheville, N.C., is where
every stitch is made, and the company never subcontracts out any of the
work that goes into its products. "By
keeping everything in-house, we are
able to closely monitor and keep track
of all our processes," Oswald says.
Being a family owned and operated
company also means Mills Manufacturing can provide its military customers with direct access to its top
decision-makers anytime they have
questions or concerns. The company's extensive expertise that covers
decades of military technological advancements also gives Mills Manufacturing a strong knowledge base from
114

manufacturing-today.com MARCH/APRIL 2016

being a family owned
and operated company means mills manufacturing can provide
its military customers
with access to its top
decision-makers anytime they have questions or concerns.
which it can draw to help customers
make positive changes to the products. Oswald says that the longevity
of its employees is another key reason why Mills Manufacturing has remained at the top of the industry.

Ramping Up
Supplying the armed forces is in
many ways similar to serving any
other customer base, but there are

some key differences. In particular,
one of the biggest challenges facing Mills Manufacturing today is
the most recent round of military
spending cuts, which have impacted
the military parachute industry to
varying degrees.
With the market shrinking, Oswald says, some cargo parachute
manufacturers have found themselves having to close up shop.
Mills Manufacturing also went
through a necessary reduction in
workforce to keep its operations
running within the last several
years, but over the last year business has started to pick up again. In
fact, the amount of work is starting
to flow so quickly now that Oswald
says Mills Manufacturing is being
challenged to bring itself back up to
the right level of production personnel. In addition, the company has


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016

Contents
Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016 - Cover1
Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016 - Cover2
Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016 - 1
Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016 - 2
Manufacturing Today - March/April 2016 - Contents
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