In the last quarter of 2012, 1000 Jobs has worked on key elements which will bring sustainability to the block making operations in Domond. The efforts made to improve productivity were important and successful thanks to Global Giving. However, they needed to be supported by efforts to increase sales and a step by step expanding plan. The following is a list of elements that contribute to our progress during since October to date.
The new generator is installed and working properly. It produces enough energy to operate all the equipments in the factory including the Block press, the stone crusher, the pan mixer, and our welding machine.
We have put in place an aggressive marking strategy to reach out the Central Plateau. We have placed banners, given interviews to Radio Station, and organized open door exposition to show our products to the potential buyers.
The results of the marketing strategy were immediate as we were able to sell 23,795 blocks during the quarter (October – December 2012) compared to 30,000 sold in the first 6 months of operations.
Contacts have been established with companies in the DR to find another block press and stone crusher to increase production and eventually jobs creation.
By the second quarter of 2013, we will have our own truck to transport sand and blocks. With the help of GlobalGiving and the recent sales, our research for a used truck has progressed very well.
Actually, we are working on finishing the cafeteria for the workers.
We are currently working on a plan to have warehouse in the most important areas in the Plateau (concentration of construction activities) to store our blocks. This will reduce the shipping cost for the buyers and make our blocks more affordable.
We have received the visit of some officials from the Department and advocacy is being made to sensitize the Government and NGOs to buy local instead of importing blocks.
In the past two months, 1000 Jobs has concentrated its efforts on improving the quality of its concrete blocks while increasing our productivity in terms of blocks produced per day. Here are the highlights of the progress we have made for our new company.
A team of engineers from Clemson University visited our plant in September and another visit is planned this month. They will be helping us with quality control. Our goal is to raise our quality to the levels now extant in the US. This collaboration could also help us marketing our blocks to the NGO's working with Clemson on projects in the Central Plateau.
We have begun using a rebuilt Mixer (to mix cement and sand) rather than mixing by hand. Although we have not yet mastered this technigue, we are making progress. This will help us in terms of quality of block and efficiency.
We are planning a trip of the managers to the Dominican Republic in order to search for a more modern, new stone crushing machine. This will save us some 15-20% on our cost of sand due to less waste. It is an investment with a real return.
Due to our success in the Global Giving Challenge we are able to replace our old existing generator with a new one this week (week of October 7-13). The old generator could never run even one week without repairs and cost us much delays and down time.
With help from EDH (Electricite d'Haiti) we have brought running water to the site for the first time.
We have purchased already gloves, masks, and helmets for our workers and soon will have boots and glasses.
We are researching the purchase of a used truck with which to haul raw materials (chiefly sand) and to deliver finished product. Such a purchase, when we can afford it, will greatly increase our profitability and move us toward both sustainability and growth.
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