Enoch Manufacturing Company is one of the largest custom precision machining manufacturers on America’s West Coast. The company produces complex, custom parts for a range of industries, shipping more than 3.5 million products every month.
Enoch began in the Portland, Ore., basement of Seth Young. He and his brothers-in-law, Trevis Brazda and Richard Dawes, co-founded the business in 1949. They named the company for a biblical figure.
In 1965, Enoch Manufacturing moved into a 12,000-square-foot facility in Clackamas, Ore., located just southeast of Portland. The company has since expanded its space to 50,000 square feet with 75 employees.
The second generation of the founding families—Paul Young, Rick Dawes and Terry Dawes—assumed operation of the company in the 1980s. In 2007, the board made the decision to hire an executive from outside the company to manage the day-to-day business. That person is current president and CEO, Tom Aitchison.
Mr. Aitchison’s experience includes senior level positions at a retail chain, a paint company, a chemical company and, most recently, a boat manufacturer, where he was also president and CEO.
"Enoch is strictly a custom manufacturer," Mr. Aitchison says of his current company. "We don’t have any of our own parts. We intentionally diversified our customer base so that no single industry is more than 25 percent of the business, and no single customer is more than 20 percent of an industry’s business. It has proven to be a very good policy, especially as we went into this recessionary period. We get a balancing effect because the mix of customers spreads out our risk and reward."
Enoch’s customers are in industries that include aerospace, dental, sporting goods, weapons, electronics, solar power and wind power. The ISO 9001: 2000-certified manufacturer produces precision parts made of materials ranging from copper and brass to titanium and plastic. The company has more than 60 pieces of equipment, including Swiss-type CAM machines and the latest CNC turning and machining centers.
Mr. Aitchison became actively involved with PMPA shortly after he joined Enoch. He was recently elected to the PMPA board of directors as a representative of District 5. His predecessor, Rick Dawes, had also served on the PMPA board, as well as on several committees.
"PMPA has been a wonderful resource for me personally because I didn’t have an industry background," explains Mr. Aitchison. "I can pick up the phone and call my fellow CEOs and ask, ‘How are you handling this situation?’
or ‘What are you doing for time-keeping on the shop floor?’ That sharing of information back and forth has just been invaluable for me."
Mr. Aitchison attends both the PMPA Annual Meeting and the Management Update Conference. His company has also sent its engineers to the PMPA National Technical Conference. "The Tech Conference is a great opportunity for our engineering people to get together with their peers and challenge each other," he says.
As many as ten Enoch employees subscribe to or watch the various PMPA Listserves, according to Mr. Aitchison. "The HR people, our controller, the engineering staff and our plant manager are all involved on the Listserves," he continues. "It’s pretty broad-based throughout our company. Members are trading information and asking questions of each other. I appreciate the updates on legislative issues, be it healthcare, union issues or even individual help.
"I’ve been in many industries and I have to say that PMPA is one of the finest that I’ve ever seen," Mr. Aitchison states. "We just finished a large project analyzing how we handle our machine costs. I was able to pick up the phone
and talk to PMPA’s professional staff about it. They sent us the templates and information we needed. I just can’t say enough about the job they do."
Mr. Aitchison would like to see more manufacturers join PMPA, especially those in his district. "I would encourage precision machining people who aren’t members to join PMPA, and people who are already members to get more involved," he says. "I’d also like to see more companies in the western states become members. The precision machining business is significantly different out here, especially how we’re handling the recession. It would sure be nice
to have more people from our part of the country involved in PMPA."
Enoch Manufacturing Company
is located at 14242 SE 82nd Drive, Clackamas, Ore. 97015.
Phone: (503) 659-2660.
Fax: (503) 659-4439.
Web site: enochmfg.com.