Cover story spread in The Manufacturing Outlook

Illuminating Success Through Innovation and Customization – The Manufacturing Outlook

The cornerstone of an exceptional contract manufacturer lies in a grand slam strategy that blends technical prowess, cutting-edge facilities, adaptability, unwavering quality, on-time delivery, cost efficiency, excellent communication, and unparalleled customer service. Add customization to the mix, and you have a recipe for success. This is what LightCorp believes in.

The family-owned business based in Western Michigan provides unique and personalized lighting and power products without compromising quality, cost, or lead time. Positioned at the forefront of industry trends, LightCorp advances workplace tools including lighting, power and office accessories through its agile operations, innovative designs, and exceptional customer service.

LightCorp has carved out its niche by embracing operational agility and crafting workplace solutions that genuinely resonate with its clientele’s distinct needs. Tailoring its offerings to client requirements has enabled it to be well-positioned in the industry, fostering customer loyalty and building long term relationships.

“We aim to bring good energy to our customers with unparalleled ingenuity by crafting made-to-order solutions that harmonize with their vision. Our commitment to innovation, agility, and exceptional customer service are the cornerstone of every customized product we provide,” says LightCorp President, Marc Langeland.

What distinguishes LightCorp from its competitors is its ability to offer customization options with no minimum order quantities. From the beginning of the development process, it incorporates personalization features, enabling tailored products in various colors, configurations, and finishes. For instance, LightCorp can paint a single product in a custom color on its in-house powder coat paint line as quickly as standard colors. It also provides custom configurations of power units by altering the sequence and types of ports offered on the front bezel, requiring minimal time, tooling, and cost compared to competitors.

This approach to customization is achievable due to LightCorp’s investment in vertical integration that facilitates affordable and swift control over crucial customization aspects. Its capital investment plans for the upcoming five years indicate a continuous commitment to this approach, with plans to incorporate cord manufacturing, laser cutting, and machining centers in-house.

“We have expanded our horizons in research, design, and development, investing heavily in front-end exploration to truly understand the needs of end-users, architects, and designers. This enables us to craft products that precisely and effectively fulfill unique customer demands,” says Melissa Wikman, VP of Business Development.

LightCorp’s commitment has been tested and proven in the face of the pandemic and ongoing supply chain challenges. Amid unprecedented disruptions, it maintained an on-time performance rate of 99 percent and a functional defect rate of just 0.011 percent. Esteemed brands in the office furniture industry like Steelcase, Knoll, and Haworth acknowledge LightCorp’s quality as they have received numerous supplier recognition awards due to their operational excellence.

These impressive figures result from a world-class supply chain team, strategic inventory management, and a continually diversified and upgraded supply chain base. LightCorp has emerged as an attractive option for reshoring as companies struggle with overseas suppliers.

A notable partnership with a Belgian architectural lighting company, Modular Lighting Instruments, further attests to LightCorp’s stellar reputation. The client selected LightCorp from a pool of ten potential North American manufacturers, citing LightCorp’s cleanliness, attention to detail, manufacturing capabilities, flexibility, and robust embedded systems as decisive factors.

At the heart of LightCorp’s success is its incredible team and culture. With a retention rate of 96.2 percent and an average tenure of over 13 years, LightCorp demonstrates an unwavering commitment to balancing its business needs with the needs of its associates. This balance has allowed LightCorp to thrive in a challenging labor market and position itself as a leader in the ‘Made in Michigan’ movement.

LightCorp shines as a reliable and efficient company, proudly fulfilling the requirements of government projects that necessitate ‘Made in America’ products. Boasting a lead time of 10 days, it navigates time-sensitive projects without compromising quality. Its ability to effortlessly scale production from 1 to 10,001 units and commitment to customization with over 200 colors available for its powder coat line is a game-changer. A dedication to excellence, as demonstrated by its ISO 9001 Quality Management System and ISO 14001 Environmental Management System, highlights LightCorp’s commitment to quality and environmental responsibility.