CASEWORK FACTORY & EQUIPMENT
The TMI factories, all located in Dickinson, ND, each utilize some of the furniture industry’s leading equipment technology.
The Laminate Casework Factory has about 100,000 square feet of manufacturing space. Casework plant additions were completed in 1973, 1987, and 1991. The Drawer Box and Sub-Base Factory, constructed in 2008, consists of about 5,750 square feet, and supports the main Casework Factory.
TMI has the product scope, services and manufacturing scale to handle large, complex construction projects.
OFFICE & TECHNOLOGY
TMI’s offices were built in 1988, and expanded in 1996. Consisting of about 30,000 square feet, they are attractive and technologically current. The offices and factories are served by a state-of-the-art computer network which connects pre-production activities with manufacturing processes. Technology enables TMI to manage massive amounts of information, stay efficient, and responsive to customer needs.
The TMI Direct Sales Division represents TMI and other manufacturers in North Dakota, eastern South Dakota, Minnesota, Montana, and Wyoming. It has responsibilities similar to a TMI dealer, with offices in Dickinson (ND), West Fargo (ND), and Minnetonka (MN). It currently has 20 employees.
ARCHITECTURAL WOODWORK FACTORY & EQUIPMENT
The TMI Architectural Woodwork and Countertop Factory has about 42,000 square feet of manufacturing space. The Architectural Woodwork Factory was completed in 1998, with the Countertop addition completed in 1999.
Select from a full menu of popular and proven architectural woodwork materials. From laminates, to solid surfacing and 3form, to hardwoods, veneers, metals, glass and so much more. TMI employs technology to engineer fully customized millwork which accommodates the aesthetics and needs of the end user.
TMI Transport is responsible for shipping TMI’s products across the United States, enabling us to control delivery. As TMI employees, our drivers help to ensure our products reach the job site on time and in good condition. They stay in contact with our dealers while en route to coordinate delivery and ensure an efficient unload process when they arrive at the job site.
TMI Transport was started in 1973. Today it full-service leases 12 tractors and 25 furniture vans, and owns 6 furniture vans.
TMI's mission statement is "TMI Cares." It is TMI's mission to care about its customers, employees, and community.Because TMI cares about its customers, we will provide them with quality products and service them in a legendary way.Because TMI cares about its employees, TMI is committed to the continued development of its human assets and growth ofopportunity for each individual. Because TMI cares about our community, we support improvement of the community andits economic growth.
TMI's vision is to become a World Class company. To be World Class means excellence and professionalism permeate the organization. The organization presents a professional and positive public image through its appearance, actions, and communications. To be World Class is to be the preferred supplier by dealers, owners, architects, general contractors, and construction managers.
TMI's pursuit of World Class excellence is embodied by having the product scope, services and manufacturing scale for large, complex construction projects. Our products conform to specifications, drawings, and industry standards, and are delivered complete and on time.
The general principles governing TMI's business activities are:
- The customer comes first
- All people are good
- People, workers, management and company are all the same thing
- People have a right to know and a responsibility to understand the essence of the business
- Every employee must contribute to and benefit from the success of the company
- Integrity in all that we do
- Business will never be any simpler than what it is today
TMI Systems Corporation brings its products to market through three sales channels including our Direct Sales Division, our National Dealer Network, and business partners including Millwork Companies who purchase casework products from us.
TMI has 25 independent dealers located across the United State, which includes 46 sales offices. TMI's dealers are responsible for promoting the TMI products to owners, architects, general contractors, and construction managers. They are also responsible for bidding, project managing, and installing TMI products.
TMI has been under the average DART (Days Away Restricted Time) rates of 3.7 for U.S. manufacturing companies four out of the past five years. We achieved a rate of 0.9 in 2016 and 2017, and we are currently at 0.5 in 2018. The TMI manufacturing division reached 385 consecutive days without a lost time accident during 2016.
The TMI business strategy is to grow its sales organically by adhering to its four strategic business pillars.
Focus on People
TMI’s focuses on its customers. Forming positive business relationships with dealers, architects, and contractors is essential to success in the construction industry. Positive customer business relationships are created by communicating face to face, keeping commitments, working professionally, and treating customers with respect.
TMI focuses on its employees by creating a work environment that is safe and provides people with the opportunity to be successful. The TMI factory is modern, well lit, and clean, with spacious work stations adequate for efficient job functions. TMI employees are well informed. Since 1979 we have been an open book managed company, sharing financial, safety and business information with all employees at quarterly company meetings.
Be Market Driven rather than product driven
The key to being market driven is the strategy to custom manufacture and supply multiple products for construction projects in the several market segments served by TMI and its distribution network. TMI’s current product offering of laminate fixed and rail-mounted flexible casework, mobile casework, architectural woodwork, and countertops is attractive to dealers, architects, construction managers, general contractors, owners and end-users. TMI believes custom built products better meet the needs of the customer.
TMI has developed sophisticated information management systems and production processes to accurately manage large quantities of information. Our market driven strategy enhances our ability to price, engineer and manufacture a nearly infinite combination of casework products by offering many variables in terms of colors, dimensions, hardware selections, materials and construction details.
Be Technologically Current
Being technologically current gives the company permission to invest in technology before it is cost justified by traditional rate of return investment analysis. Waiting for technology to be cost justified results in technology investments that are one or two generations behind. It is technology that allows the company to manage massive amounts of information, be efficient, and be responsive to customer needs
Do Business From a position of financial strength
Doing business from a position of financial strength is crucial to TMI's success. We are committed to annual audited financial statements, and a strong, conservative, well-structured balance sheet. TMI maintains adequate bonding limits at competitive prices. We meet and often exceed major construction company's pre-bid qualifications for financial stability.
It was financial strength that enabled TMI to withstand the rigors of the “Great Recession” and be in a position to capitalize on the recovery of the construction markets.
TMI was founded in February, 1969 by Larry R. Strand. He started TMI at the age of 31 with $25,000 and an agreement to acquire some of the assets and assume some of the liabilities of the bankrupt Hauck Millwork Company. Hauck Millwork started manufacturing in Dickinson, North Dakota in the early 1950's but discontinued operations in 1968.
Strand immediately focused on manufacturing laminate casework for the national education market and on building a national network of independent dealers.
Larry Strand - Circa 1983
The national construction market in TMI’s early history was heavily unionized. Larry recognized that it would be advantageous for TMI to have a union made product. In 1971, he invited the Carpenter union to organize the TMI employees. Today, TMI factory employees are represented by the North Central States Regional Council of Carpenters.
Strand realized, due to TMI’s remote location in North Dakota and in order to effectively service a national market, TMI would need to get into the transportation business. TMI Transport Corporation was started in March, 1973. The company’s product lines were also expanded to include laminate doors, wall paneling, and office furniture.
TMI’s early years were challenging. By the end of 1978 the company was over extended and on the verge of bankruptcy. TMI shed all but its casework line and aggressively cut costs. In early 1979 a Texas competitor failed and offered its backlog to TMI. The added backlog plus the cost cutting allowed TMI to break even in 1979. TMI went on to experience 24 consecutive years of profitability.
Dennis Johnson, who was originally hired in 1974 as an industrial engineer, is named president of TMI in January, 1982.
TMI acquired Bartley Supply Company in July, 1982. Based in St. Cloud, MN, Bartley Supply Company is a wholesaler of heating, pumping, and plumbing fixtures and equipment. On February 3, 1984, while returning to Dickinson from a visit to St. Cloud, Mr. Strand died when the airplane he was piloting encountered bad weather and crashed near Tappen, ND. The Strand family made the decision to sell TMI later that year.
A TMI employee group led by Dennis Johnson purchased the Strand family’s TMI stock in May, 1985.
TMI expanded into architectural woodwork, countertops, and direct sales in the late 1980’s. At the same time, TMI recognized that the casework market was evolving from a market that accepted a manufacturer’s standard product to one that was demanding many more product choices. The number of choices grew in quantity and complexity. TMI realized it was in the business of managing information.
TMI took advantage of the Y2K challenge, and in 1994 embarked upon a bold software re-write project under the leadership of Tom Krank. Mr. Krank joined TMI in 1979, and in 2012 was named Senior Vice President.
TMI began to convert from a main frame computer system and stand-alone estimating, drafting, engineering, and materials management software, to a client server based network with highly integrated software. The project was successfully completed and made it possible for TMI to manufacture a highly- customized product line with the ability to download work orders electronically to its major pieces of factory equipment. The software is known as jSEPP, and is a major competitive advantage for TMI today.
In May, 1999, Dean Rummel was named President and Chief Operating Officer of TMI. Dennis Johnson remained as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Rummel had joined the company in 1980 as an accountant. He served as the company’s Chief Financial Officer and Vice President of Sales and Marketing before becoming TMI's third President.
Following Mr. Rummel, Kevin Kovash assumed Sales & Marketing responsibilities. Mr. Kovash joined TMI in 1974, and was named Senior Vice President in 2007. Kevin built and supports the premier dealership organization that TMI enjoys today. He is recognized nationally as an industry leader.
In October, 2015, Dean announced his retirement effective March, 2017. Dennis Johnson was named President and Tom Krank was promoted to General Manager effective January, 2016.
TMI has survived enormous industry changes caused by the “Great Recession” of 2008-2009 and the impact of the Bakken oil development in western North Dakota. TMI is located on the southern edge of the world class Bakken oil play. From 2010-2015 the company contended with high housing costs, generous oil field compensation levels, and low unemployment due to the oil impact.
From 2009 to the end of 2016, nearly 400 direct and indirect competitors of TMI have failed due to the recession.