2015 Hunter Manufacturing Awards
The prestigious Hunter Manufacturing Awards, was a fun night with a Flashback to the 50’s and Grease….is the Word theme. The annual Awards’ event, profile, promotes and recognises excellence in manufacturing in the Region of the Hunter, Central Coast and mid north Coast. It was the 11th year for the prestigious awards, which was held at Wests City and close to 500 guests were in attendance.
Below is a link showing some highlights from the night.
HMA Chairman, Bob Cowan, took the opportunity to launch a new initiative which will give manufacturers the opportunity to be further assisted.
NBN Television and HMA have joined together and launched ‘world class, made here’, an initiative to further promote and assist manufacturers both via television medium and digitally.
An introductory video, along with 3 demo videos on randomly chosen companies, was communicated to the audience. The demonstrations were used to portray the diversification of manufacturing in the Region. The campaign is supported by online activity including website/microsite, Facebook and Twitter.
This microsite will be used as a business directory for all companies that participate and will be another avenue for companies to be further promoted, profiled and marketed. Information sessions about the initiative will be held on 21st and 28th October at NBN Television’s studios. Companies interested can phone 0438 242 899.
The Board of HMA continues to utilise some funds toward a scholarship for potential or existing TAFE students who are planning or are currently undertaking a course which is directly related to the manufacturing industry.
The scholarships are open to any student who is undertaking a course directly related to manufacturing, is committed to a career in the manufacturing industry, shows a passion for engineering and manufacturing.
The value of the scholarship is $10,000 per year to be distributed to up to 5 students. The scholarship is for 1 year only, but recipients are eligible to receive scholarships in consecutive years, subject to continuing to meet selection criteria.
Manufacturer of the Year
2015 Major Sponsor, DOWNER RAIL, awarded the prestigious award of Manufacturer of the Year to WEARX.
A few short years ago, WearX created a vision to be the global leader in wear solutions. The mission they defined to create this reality, was to provide highly innovative and effective wear solutions to the global mining industry.
They have gone about their mission with passion and determination and have achieved remarkable results in a very short time frame.
The WearX team have combined a smart strategy, that identified the right place in the market for the business to focus, with the melding of a range of complementary production capabilities into a disciplined, high quality operation and then went about taking the products born of this hard work to both domestic and international customers.
Their success has been in no short measure due to the fact they committed to a deep understanding of the problems and opportunities facing their clients and have created solutions that have delivered real, measurable improvements in productivity and costs for these clients.
These efforts were recognised in 2014 with the Premier’s NSW Export Award in the Minerals, Energy and Related services category.
WearX’s outstanding success in very tough market conditions, its visionary leadership and the ability to execute their strategy so effectively, make them a very worthy winner of the 2015 Manufacturer of the Year.
HMA Board Award
Portable Safety Cam
The HMA Board Award was presented to PORTABLE SAFETY CAM
PORTABLE SAFETY CAM HAS developed a wireless safety camera system based on its EXISTING wired version. In addition to going wireless, PSC were able to redesign and manufacture CRITICAL COMPONENTS to reduce unit cost.
Their surveillance system is proving to be a great relief for workers that have to work in confined spaces and often dangerous tasks.
The WHS benefits are immediately obvious of an increased level of safety.
The flexibility, robustness and ease of setup of the monitoring system are just a few of the impressive aspects of the system. The company has built an enviable reputation with the appliction of research and development in this space.
The improvements to the existing hard-wired system has generated considerable nterest from varying markets where the application of wireless technology is growing and through these improvements has opened new opportunities for Portable Safety Cam.
PSC is a shining example of a manufacturing company that epitomises the calibre of manufacturing right here in our region during very difficult times.
The Manufacturer of the Year and HMA Board Award winners have won trips to an international destination to attend a Trade Fair, Event or other activity that will serve to benefit their company. The trips are sponsored by helloworld – HTG Newcastle and HMA.
Rising Star Award
Nicholas Percy from Varley Group won the 2015 Rising Star Award.
Nicholas is a certified practising engineer who works for leading Hunter manufacturer, Varley.
He has clearly demonstrated, even at this early stage of his career, that he has all the attributes required to play a leading role in the manufacturing sector in our region for many years to come.
Nicholas has been at the forefront of a range of significant projects and innovations that have impacted on both the productivity of the business and the health and safety of the workforce.
Despite a heavy workload, as a design engineer, Nicholas is well on his way to completing his MBA and has also been invited to participate in the assessment of other engineers through the professional certification program.
Nicholas’ passion, drive and commitment to excellence are inspirational and he is worthy winner of this award for 2015
A highly commended was awarded to alex vandervoort, from WRI Australia.
Apprentice of the Year – Manufacturing
Apprentice of the Year – Manufacturing was awarded to Brock Goodwin who is employed by Hunternet Group Training Company and hosted by Nepean Longwall at Rutherford.
Knowing early that he wished to pursue a career in Engineering, Brock commenced his vocational training whilst still at school. Several units of the engineering qualification were completed before leaving schools. The apprenticeship was the natural progression to achieving this goal. It was this planning and goal setting that impressed the judges. Some of the awards achieved by Brock:
- 1st year – runner up outstanding achiever.
- 2nd year – nominated for another achievement award
- 3rd Year – Gold Medallist at world skills in 2014 in Perth
- 4th Year. – Employer successfully applied for the early completion of Brock’s apprenticeship and a promotion to Service Engineer His initiative, maturity, goal setting and insight gave him the slight edge needed.
In a field of high quality finalists Brock scored consistently in all categories to be a worthy winner of the 2015 Apprentice of the year awards.
Highly commended was Joel Burgess from Varley Group. Joel impressed the judges with his career planning and his use of his apprenticeship to establish his career HIS path.
Excellence in Innovation
WRI Australia– ‘RAPTEK’
The Ferruled Dump Rope arose through a challenge presented by a client – ‘make a safer and less time consuming process of changing out drag-line ropes’.
WRI AUSTRALIA employed a strong innovation process that included risk management, patenting and process redesign. The resultant product has achieved significant market penetration in the face of strong international competition.
This innovation highlights how looking differently at problems can create competitive advantage and potentially new market opportunities.
Highly commended was Dywidag Systems International Pty Ltd.
Export of Manufactured Goods
DYWIDAG Systems International
Export of Manufactured Goods Award was awarded to the DYWIDAG Systems International PTY LTD, located at Bennetts Green.
DSI provided an excellenct application highlighting their success in export through a wide range of diverse export markets, in Asia and beyond.
They have dedicated staff to assist with export activities in these markets and in finding new markets.
DSI is focusing on markets that they can be the most competitive in and provide quality over price. This has contributed the growth in these markets.
THEIR export strategy is clear, careful and well researched, concentrating on resolving market challenges and focusing on markets that show the best prospects and growth.
Their key achievements also include opening an office in Indonesia, ongoing commercial visits and onsite training programs.
The key to DSI’S success is through careful market penetration, focus on export markets with the best profits, 24 hours customer support and customized warehouse facilities mean that DSI have huge potential to continue to sustain current markets and grow new export markets into the future.
Highly commended was wax converter textiles at rutherford.
Excellence in Technology
J&S Engineering and Maintenance
The Technology Award was awarded to Rutherford company, J&S Engineering and Maintenance.
J&S Engineering developed new innovative technology in the Hunter which is fantastic to see. The patented water separating device that reduces dust during drilling operations is a great engineering achievement.
Extending the life of expensive drills by 50% whilst minimising dust generation by 95%, reducing water consumption by half, more flexibility during operation and easier maintenance has clear economic, environmental and health benefits. Assuming the upfront costs will be competitive (an important consideration for prospective buyers), customers will benefit from cost savings during operation.
The new technology is supported by an ambitious business plan to expand into Queensland, Western Australia and the USA. The best entry this year and a worthy winner of the HMA Excellence in Technology Award 2015.
Highly commended awards were given to Dywidag Systems International for their combination of camera and robot technology AND Portable Safety Cam for their surveillance system for use in confined spaces.
Excellence in Product Design
Excellence in Product Design award was awarded to company Composite Cats for their Caraboat design.
This amalgamation of boat and caravan is very convincing. The quality of the fitout is truly impressive and suggests both a boat and a caravan of much larger outside dimensions – this must have been very difficult to achieve within these tight design limitations.
The low load height in the caravan configuration suggests that it is a synergy of the two, rather than a compromise of either.
The external carriage of fuels is a safety plus. The hull shape looks stable as it would need to be.
Highly commended was Hedweld group of companies.
Excellence in Marketing
Delta Water Solutions
Delta Water Solutions have provided a personalised and customised service through its Water Advisory Service. This approach in amending its product line to meet the needs of each individual customer is providing the company with growth into new national and international markets and is a very effective way of developing strong customer relationships.
Delta are investing in R&D; developing new technologies; providing personalised service and are wrapping this all up in a very professional marketing approach.
Highly commended was Classic Blinds and Shutters.
Excellence in Safety
Onesteel – Newcastle Rod Mill
Onesteel – Newcastle Rod Mill have continued with the ongoing implementation of their ‘Take 2 for Injury Prevention’ program over the past several years and are now benefiting from a cultural change within their workforce which is now resulting in improved safety performance and productivity.
They are working on the principal that all injuries can be prevented as they strive toward “GOAL ZERO”.
There has been excellence involvement from all level of staff and they are seeing the benefit in the old saying that “A Safe Workplace is a Productive Workplace”, with reduced incident and injury rates and increased production, both occurring simultaneously. Well done One Steel Newcastle Rod Mill.
Excellence in Manufacturing Process
DYWIDAG Systems International
The judge said that ‘Overall it is an amazing performance – to go in such a short timeframe, from an information poor and reactive business process to a targeted scoreboard that effectively drives output and gives early warning of pending issues to all internal stakeholders including the marketting division. This makes the customer the ultimate winner’.
A very impressive result given the ambitious objectives that the company and workforce set itself.
Highly commended was Tomago Aluminium company.
Excellence in Training
Morris Technology Group
This training programme exemplifies the collaborative approach of manufacturers in the Hunter. In order to improve productivity and reduce rework, Morris Technology Group decided to embark on a training programme for staff in Lean Manufacturing.
The training was customised to the company’s needs and delivered on site, focusing on real workplace processes. To make the training viable they opened the opportunity for three other companies to participate.
The outcome of the training was to increase productivity, decrease waste and to re-engage many staff in formal learning.
Excellence in Environmentally Responsible Manufacturing Practices
J&S Engineering and Maintenance
J&S Engineering and Maintenance PTY LTD have clearly articulated its process and the associated environmental impacts. potewntial impacts include : air quality, water usage and quality, greenhouse gases and waste management.
J&S management and workforce have worked together to ensure that they have an economical and environmentlaly sustainable business.
They have installed a substantial solar system saving tens of thousands of dollars from the company’s power bill, made savings on workshop lighting, improved recylcling across the board and controlled air emissions from an abrasive blasting system.
They have developed a comprehensive environmental management process progressing towards AS/NZS ISO Accreditation with the involtement of staff and management.
The meet and regularly discuss environmental issues and ways to improve their performance. Education and Evniromental awareness are a major activity.
J&S Engineering and Maintenance PTY LTD have shown what can be achieved with a holistic approach to quantifying and improving environmental awareness and improvement.
Highly commended was awarded to Orica.
Photographs from AJM Photography can be found at
The log on code www.ajmphoto.com.au/photocart
Gallery name: HMA 2015
Access Code: Grease
Sally Dunwell Photography
Photographs from Sally Dunwell Photography can be found at
For purchase of photographs and for pricing – please visit the website at www.sallydunwellphotography.com
2015 HMA Finalists
Below is a list of this year’s Finalists – winners will be announced at the Event. Winners of the prestigious Manufacturer of the Year and HMA Board Award will be awarded the prize of a trip to an international destination to a Trade Fair or Event of their choice.
- Alie-jane Travel Accessories and Designs
- Angel Skips
- Archer Enterprises
- Austube Mills
- Chute Technology
- Composite Cats
- Classic Blinds and Shutters
- Delta Water Solutions
- Design Anthology
- Downer Rail
- Dywidag-systems International Pty Ltd
- Hedweld Group
- Howard Mining Services
- DYWIDAG Systems International – Hunternet Group Training Company
- JA Martin
- J&S Engineering
- Molycop- Commsteel Rail Products
- Molycop – Australasia
- Morris Technology Group
- Newcastle Rod Mill
- Nepean Longwall – Hunternet Group Training Company
- Nivek Industries
- Norris Industires
- Possibilities Management Group
- Portable Safety Cams
- Quality Sheet Metal
- Quarry Mining & Construction
- Safety Link
- SGM Fabrication
- Sharpe Brothers
- Signature Sauces
- Steber International
- Tomago Aluminium Co Pty Ltd
- TS Global
- Wax Converters Textiles
- WRI Australia