Ébénisterie Foxwoods Millwork

Challenge: Being competitive from a remote New Brunswick location
Solution: Bringing together advanced technology and old-fashioned customer service

Ébénisterie Foxwoods Millwork

While old-world quality is central to the custom woodwork designed and fashioned by Ébénisterie Foxwoods Millwork in Beresford, New Brunswick, new advances in technology are enabling the company to grow its market share.  

“Upgrades are essential to being competitive,” says CEO Bruno Arseneault. “I never stop investing in the company. I believe in it.”

Foxwoods, which provides customized commercial woodworking services for customers like Pizza Delight, the Radisson Hotel in Fredericton, and Assumption Place in Moncton, installed a Computer Numerical Control (CNC) system last year.

The CNC Router is a highty sophisticated piece of equipment that simplifies the company’s work and makes it more efficient, allowing Foxwoods to provide custom millwork for a variety of projects. As Bruno explains it: “A CNC can cut all kinds of shapes, letters, pocket holes, etc. All our cabinets are jointed together with a mortise and tenon system. No more measuring or trying to find which piece goes where, it fits together like a puzzle now.”

What it comes down to is an increase in productivity – the entire process is faster. “It’s much more efficient,” says Bruno. “Without the CNC, we could still do the work, but it would take four times the hours to do so, just like in the old days.”

The decision to invest $200,000 in the equipment upgrade was not made lightly. “This took one year of planning, but we are already seeing the return on investment,” notes Bruno. “This will become standard for the industry.”

For Foxwoods, staying ahead of the competition also involves enhancing internal efficiency. Plans are in the works this year to move to a paperless system which will be used in every task from receiving and sorting, to assembly and delivery, as well as time-keeping and payroll. The company is one of only two in the province looking at installing this automated process. A $200,000 expansion of its 1,100 square metre facility is also planned for the fall.

Efficiency and productivity, however, cannot replace client satisfaction, which is a cornerstone of the Foxwoods brand. “Our customer service is second to none. We are located in a remote area, but I will see customers more often in Moncton, for example, than a shop in Moncton would,” says Bruno, who does a weekly tour of the province to meet with clients face-to-face.

“We don’t cut corners,” he adds. “We go above and beyond. Sometimes customers don’t even realize this.” Invisible to customers, but essential to quality, are tasks such as gluing parts together and ensuring this is done to the highest standards by using the proper adhesive.

According to Bruno, that attention to detail – from the top down – is critical. “It’s always good to hire people smarter than you, but it’s important to be actively involved.”

Partnerships, such as the one with the Government of Canada, also play a key role in Foxwoods’ continued growth. With support from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), the Government of Canada is helping Foxwoods be more efficient and competitive in their market. An investment of almost $50,000 went towards the purchase of a new CNC machine, which features one of the highest capacities on the market, cutting shapes and sizes faster and more precisely.

Ébénisterie Foxwoods Millwork Inc. is a prime example of how innovation and resourcefulness fuel Atlantic Canada’s economy, at home and beyond.

For more information on programs and services available to businesses in Atlantic Canada call 1-800-561-7862 or go to www.acoa-apeca.gc.ca

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We don't cut corners. We go above and beyond. Sometimes customers don't even realize this.
Bruno Arseneault, CEO, Ébénisterie Foxwoods Millwork
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