Reed City Tool

Success with The Center

REED CITY TOOL: Taking the First Steps Toward Continuous Improvement

Reed City Tool’s engagement with the SFM Group, while partnering with Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center, has been a transformational step in our journey for sustainable growth and rigorous continuous improvement. Although we are quite young in this process, we have seen an immediate impact on our business and are excited to see what the future brings as we continue to build upon the foundational principles we have learned and implemented together.
-- John Barnett, President and CEO

Reed City Tool ( is a full-scale mold building, press making and plastic injection molding company based in Reed City, Michigan. Best known in global industries for their turnkey garage door panel and steel roof shingle hydraulic press manufacturing, their highly skilled team also provides everything from mold design to part testing. Reed City Tool’s 96 employees include a range of skilled journeyman mold makers, skilled machinists, mechanical engineers, technical designers and sales engineers. Their values of integrity, attention to detail and customer service are evident in all their products and services.


When Reed City Tool hired John Barnett as President and CEO in May 2017, he was put in charge of understanding the business as well as growing and sustaining it. Because he didn’t understand at the granular level what was or was not working within the company, he knew he needed outside assistance if he was going to bring about true change and improvement within the company. With the approval of the ownership, Mr. Barnett sought outside training through The Center- West (The Right Place), which was introduced to him through a relationship with local lean and consulting trainer, SFM Group.


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Reed City Tool contracted The Center- West and SFM Group to provide foundational continuous improvement training for operational teams, support teams and a management review team. In addition, they became ISO9001:2015 and IATF 16949:2016 compliant. Reed City Tool continues to engage The Center- West on technical skills training and critical equipment and process certification. As a result of the continuous improvement training, Reed City Tool has seen improvements in sales, savings and avoided investments. They also have seen improvement in their company culture as the employees have been a driving force in the creation of the change.


  • Retained Sales: $200,000
  • Increased Sales: $200,000
  • Cost Savings: $100,000
  • Saved/Avoided Investment: $120,000
  • Culture: Employees were a driving force behind the improvements to the company