Going the Extra Mile
Writer: Matthew Staff
Project Manager: Donovan Smith
Metsec Cables Ltd’s esteemed reputation for manufacturing and distributing cables and systems for the transmission and distribution of power is being driven forward more concertedly as a consequence of strong parent company backing, and an ever-diversifying portfolio of abilities.
Specialising in delivering products and services created for specific customer requirements - especially to energy and telecom domains - Metsec’s attractiveness as a provider and partner has derived from a strong capacity to innovate; a vast array of products, solutions and processes in-house; the ability to remain customer-focused at all times; and a subsequent flexibility to respond to those clients’ needs efficiently and effectively.
“Metsec Cables Ltd is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Doshi Group of Companies - who have been operating in the East African region for over 75 years - and we manufacture and supply a wide range of cables addressing the most diverse applications in both the energy and telecom sectors in Kenya and Africa,” the Company says. “We go an extra mile to deliver more.”
Compounding its evident success in the region and industry are a plethora of affirming certifications and accreditations to showcase at Metsec.
These include ISO 9001-2008, ISO 14001:2004, and ISO 18001:2007 certifications which highlight the business’s consistency and quality across sales, customer service, health & safety, and environmental considerations.
And backed-up by each and every internal refinement, is a proactive strive and dedication to modernise continuously; as has recently been epitomised by its adoption of M-Pesa payments.
“In search of improving customer service, Metsec has introduced Paybill through Safaricom as a convenient method for customers to purchase Metsec products,” the Company explains. “Metsec’s paybill offers convenience through mobile payment; secure transactions and payments that can be made any time.
“The benefits from this include convenience, no extra charges, and the ability to pay anywhere or anytime.”
Ultimately, Metsec is judged on its initial remit and offering, which embraces the supply of underground power transmission cables and systems, as well as power distribution cables, systems and network components for a wide range of applications within the utilities industry.
“In underground power transmission Metsec Cables designs, supplies and installs high and extra-high voltage cables for power transmission systems, both from power plant sites and in the transmission and primary distribution networks; especially focusing on customised turnkey solutions and cables with a high technological content,” the Company details. “Metsec Cables also provides installation and post-installation services, network management and maintenance and emergency services, such as disaster recovery.
“In the field of power distribution cables and systems, Metsec Cables supplies medium voltage cables and systems to connect industrial and residential buildings to the primary distribution networks. The Company also produces low voltage cables and systems for power distribution and the wiring of buildings. All products comply with international and local relevant standards.”
Complementing its utilities operations is the trade and installation strand of Metsec which accounts for the manufacture of a complete range of low voltage cables and building wires to distribute power to and within residential and non-residential premises.
The third arm then embraces industry applications, as the Company continues: “For industrial applications, Metsec Cables specialises in integrated, added-value cabling solutions highly customised to the individual specifications of customers.
“Metsec Cables serves a broad range of industries including the oil, gas & petrochemical sector; transportation; mining and renewable energies sector, including wind and solar power; nuclear energy; and also for defence and military applications.
“Products range from low and medium voltage power and instrumentation/control cables, to dynamic multipurpose umbilicals for transporting energy, telecommunications, fluids and chemical products.”
Knowing the standard
Ensuring consistent quality across all of these product and solution sub-sectors is a workforce committed to the provision of such high standards; yet at a marginal cost so as to ensure equally consistent customer satisfaction.
“We will listen to our customers, understand and balance their needs and expectations with those of our suppliers, employees, investors and society, and endeavour to give full satisfaction to all parties,” the Company affirms. “To achieve this, the Company has adopted and implemented a quality management system based on ISO 9001:2008 standards with measurable objectives which will be communicated to all staff and reviewed periodically for continual improvement and for the interest of all stakeholders.
“At Metsec, we realise that the quality of our product is the future of our business. So, not only do we provide a large range of cables to international certifications and standards, such as HAR, BS KEBS and IEC, but we also conduct our own in-house quality checks to ensure our cable meets the most stringent requirements. So we don’t just rely on third party verification for our quality.”
Quality testing is given equal importance to simply quality assurance; practicing what it preaches and once again making the most of the Company’s internal skill-sets in order to verify its qualities.
“Our Quality Department is highly experienced, very well equipped and capable of measuring key dimensional and electrical properties of any cable to ensure conformity to the appropriate specification,” the business states. “This starts by knowing the standard. It may seem obvious, but you need to know what you are measuring. At Metsec Cables we hold up-to-date copies of all the relevant standards for our cables. This ensures that whether we are checking the electrical or dimensional elements of a cable we know which standard applies.”
The next phase involves physical testing whereby the dimensional stability of the product - i.e. the key indicator of its quality - is addressed and monitored via the stripping of each layer, and subsequent measuring to ensure compliance.
“It is not just the measurement of the cable dimension that is important, but visual indicators such as surface finish, strip-ability and flexibility,” Metsec explains. “The third and final phase then revolves around electrical testing. The purpose of a cable is to carry electrical energy efficiently from one place to another. Therefore, the heart of a cable is the conductor and the key characteristic to efficiency is resistivity.
“At Metsec Cables we use an industry standard micro-ohmeter to test the resistivity of the cable against that stated by the supplier within routine test information provided. This is also cross-referenced with our production specification and the appropriate International standard.”
Just as the Metsec workforce looks after the quality of its cables, Metsec in turn looks after the wellbeing of its workforce; staunchly committing itself to health, safety and welfare considerations for its employees, as well as their families, Metsec’s customers, on-site contractors, and even visitors.
The Company details: “Our main objectives are to place health & safety as everyone’s responsibility in our Company; to prevent and control injuries and illness, and their risks; to ensure that all employees understand the value of maintaining a healthy and safe environment; to use this health & safety philosophy as a competitive advantage; to identify hazards; and to assess our health & safety performance continuously.”
And as a consequence of the peace of mind that is brought about through such an ethos, Metsec can then focus more wholly on the aspect which has made it the success it is today: the ability to achieve quality at every stage of the production cycle.
“The quality of all Metsec products is ensured by strict monitoring of every stage of the production cycle, from the procurement of raw materials to the delivery of the finished product, by means of an extensive system of controls at each specific stage of the cycle,” the Company says. “In raw materials procurement, the focus of controls is on the selection of suppliers thus assuring the quality of individual supplies that have to be accompanied by the relevant certificates, showing their compliance with the standards established in the contract.”
This then transcends to equally high standards of customer service: “To ensure a high standard of customer service, Metsec conducts a series of customer satisfaction surveys and takes monthly measurements of service indicators.
“Metsec is constantly engaged in the continuous improvement of customer service, providing its clients with an increasing number of logistics services and designing new products to meet the changing customer requirements.”