A purchase by a larger company and move to a larger, purpose-built premises is creating exciting times for Hamilton aluminium window and door manufacturer, Origin Windows.
Origin Windows has been manufacturing aluminium windows and doors in Hamilton since 1987.
The company’s projects range from one residential window through to curtain walls for high rise commercial buildings.
Its projects are located throughout the North Island, including Waiheke and Great Barrier Island.
Origin Windows general manager Mark Ritchie says Origin’s business is split between 40 percent residential construction and 60 percent commercial, and both have grown significantly in recent years with the thriving construction sector.
Origin Windows has been based at Northpark Drive for some years but Mr Ritchie said the growth of the business meant a change was needed.
A move to new premises on Arthur Porter Drive had been planned for a year and the move in January was an exciting moment, he says.
“We had outgrown our old factory and needed more space. There was no room to grow at the old premises, so this was a good opportunity to move to the new industrial area at Arthur Porter Drive.”
The move took place over four days from January 8 this year and all staff helped with the relocation.
“We’re very excited. At 3300 square metres, our new factory is 2.5 times the size of our old factory. Safety is of paramount importance to Origin Windows and with this space we are able to plan our workflow efficiently and safely.
“Our new premises has a large secure compound where we are able to safely load and unload trucks and delivery vehicles away from general circulation and work areas. Aluminium joinery manufacturing includes loading heavy units and another great feature of the new factory is a set down loading dock for ease of loading the trucks without having to lift window units.”
He says moving into the new building also provided an opportunity to modernise the working environment for staff with ergonomic features like rise and fall desks and large twin computer screens.
The factory incorporates the latest technology CNC and twin saw machinery and has been designed to split residential and commercial window production for greatest efficiency. Natural lighting and ventilation are optimised through the use of translucent roofing panels, operable louvres and full height roller doors spaced around the building.
“The new premises are purpose-designed for our business with the offices and showroom adjacent to the factory,” says Mr Ritchie.
“The modern design provides a great showcase for our manufactured product and is all about providing a pleasant and efficient work environment.
“We are currently finalising the design of our showroom that will showcase the latest suites and styles. Customers will be able to see and operate the joinery in an installed state, which will greatly assist with their joinery selection process.”
Another big change for Origin Windows has been the company’s purchase in 2017 by Wight Aluminium Limited, which was looking to expand its operation in this part of the country.
Wight Aluminium is a privately owned business with its head office and factory located in Whanganui. Wight also has a design and project management office in Auckland to service the large commercial projects it undertakes in the region.
“Between the three locations, we are able to share design, estimating, project management and factory resources,” says Mr Ritchie.
“This makes us stronger and better and able to take on any project – large or small. Having access to another factory also means we can meet deadlines, even if our factory runs at full capacity.”
Origin Windows currently has around 40 staff based in Hamilton and 120 across the Wight Aluminium group. Staff are either based in the office, new factory or on construction sites with a diverse range of skill sets including administration, quantity surveying and estimating, designers and design managers, procurement specialists, production managers, window fabricators, truck drivers, CNC and twin saw operators, project managers and carpenters and window installers.
“By being part of the Wight Aluminium Group, we have access to knowledge, experience and resources that were previously not accessible,” says Mr Ritchie.
“This gives us the capacity to undertake complex commercial projects and also provide a higher level of service to our residential customers. The in-house design capacity we now have creates a significant point of difference from our competitors.”
The growth in the construction industry in the last decade has put big pressure on many related businesses and Origin Windows is no different. To cater for the demand, expansion and a new company structure has been essential.
“The surge in construction activity in recent years has presented significant opportunities and challenges to our business,” says Mr Ritchie.
“The growth has justified substantial investment in new premises, technology and staff. The big challenge now is ensuring that we utilise these resources to deliver premium product competitively.
“We are now in a great position to do so.”