AMS: The Year in Review

Posted by AMS / Monday, December 17, 2018

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For AMS, the past year has been one of business growth, classroom learning, safety training, employee giving and much more. The ‘much more’ of our year comes from experiencing what it means to be a B-Corporation. The commitment of a B-Corp is to be good for the world, and this intention has been embraced by employees and management alike.

Overviews

AMS CEO, Ken Wiseman, offered his overview of AMS’ accomplishments:

In terms of workforce development, AMS has embraced the annual increasing minimum wage in many ways. We’ve put tremendous investment in technology to improve efficiency and reduce the labor associated with some of our core service areas, we’ve become much more careful in our recruiting process working with several organizations in LA County that focus on entry and re-entry placements into the workforce. This partnership has proven invaluable in creating a wealth of wonderful associate candidates.

Our in-house learning center continues to be a place for our associates to gather and celebrate events such as Employee of the Month recognition luncheons safety meetings, logistics and business skills courses taught by our local College of the Canyons, Apprentice and Pre-Apprentice meetings and training, and lots of other internal training, with a mock shipping, pick and pack and pick area available in the center to practice skills.

A team that is given respect, a safe workplace, and the opportunity of self-improvement, is a team that embraces continuous improvement in the workplace.

During the year AMS expanded its geographic footprint to better serve our clients. We became a bi-coastal fulfillment company, operating both in California and Pennsylvania. As we adjusted to the growth, we continued with all of the efforts and programs that make up the culture of our company.

AMS President, Jay Catlin offered his thoughts on growth and the improvements that have been achieved during the year:

“I’m extremely proud of how AMS has truly been able to balance our commitment to our Company, Organization, Community, Environment and Ourselves in 2018. From a Company standpoint, AMS has seen a tremendous positive impact from strategic initiatives that are now coming into fruition. It was in Q4 of 2015 that AMS endeavored to grow the business while shrinking our physical footprint by targeting a more ideal client profile of high-turn businesses selling smaller/low cube products. Within two years of setting the strategy, AMS has managed to reduce its square footage by nearly 30% and during the same span we have increased sales by nearly 40%. A key part of our strategy was to focus on bottom line performance, and to help us achieve measurable results,

“AMS has pursued technology advances to enhance our efficiency and effectiveness on the floor. Over the last year+, we fully rolled out our in-house software “WAMS” across the entirety of our business, including our Pennsylvania operation. Our Operations and Client Services team has done an excellent job working in tandem with IT to establish sound processes to go along with the software advances, and as a result we have been able to effectively manage our growth in activity and keep our services levels as high as they have ever been! Additionally, we have begun to launch our new shipping manifest software “ProShip” in 2018, and are thrilled with the results! Besides a far more speedy and streamlined process for label production, carrier selection and international compliance, our clients will soon benefit from our ability to rate shop multiple carrier options based on their goals for delivery time and the weight of the package. Going bi-coastal in 2018 was also a tremendous achievement for AMS and our clients seeking to reduce the growing impact of freight expense. 

“As always, I give credit for all that we were able to achieve in 2018 to our fulfillment “gurus” at AMS who worked diligently as a Team to progress so much while continuing to provide great service to our clients on a day-to-day basis. Thank you AMS Team and AMS Clients for an amazing year of growth and advancement!”

Community Support and Events

Some of the outstanding events during the year were: Single Mothers Outreach event; Mayor’s Committee for the Employment of Individuals with Disabilities Luncheon; the Sheriff’s Foundation Volunteer Appreciation Dinner; Earth Day celebrations; AMS’ 16th Anniversary celebrations; Drive to support Bridge to Home; the Environmental Expo and River Rally Cleanup; The Sheriff’s Foundation Golf Tournament and Fundraiser; and the HUF Foundation Heroes Banquet.

Outstanding Employees

Employee safety training was ongoing during the year; the AMS volunteer “Green Team” kept busy; AMS started an extra-curricular donation program for employees; employees continued their participation in adult education classes; and employees organized, raised funds, and donated holiday food and gifts to those in need.

The following excerpts from our blogs point to some of the highlights of the year. It has been good year for all of us at AMS, and we’re looking forward to many more achievements in the years to come.

Highlights of the Year

AMS Receives Social Enterprise Certification
January 25

AMS Fulfillment is proud to announce that it has been granted certification from LA County as a Social Enterprise. This great news stems from AMS’ successful efforts to serve the community through workforce development. AMS is a privately owned corporation headquartered in Valencia, California. Read More:

AMS: Logistics Apprentices Begin Classroom Training
February 1

AMS Fulfillment, in partnership with Employee Training Institute (ETI) and College of the Canyons (COC), has begun its first classroom training in their groundbreaking Nationally Certified Logistics Apprentice Program. This new apprenticeship, in Logistics and Warehousing, was announced in November of 2016 and began in early 2017. Read More:

AMS Employees Begin WMS Training
February 13

AMS is pleased to announce an exciting new class opportunity for employees! This is the first WMS (Warehouse Management System) training with AMS’ warehouse services software enhancements. The class will cover system navigation (InOrder, Warehouse Services) on processes related to Shipping/Picking & Packing, Receiving/Inventory and Returns/Cycle Counting. Read More:

AMS/COC Pre-Apprenticeship Program Set to Begin
June 4

At the beginning of 2018, AMS Fulfillment and College of the Canyons announced their intention to start a new Pre-Apprenticeship Program. Over the past few months they have continued their efforts until recently they met to discuss the launch of the Material Coordinator Pre-Apprenticeship Program. Once again we see the unique partnership between an employer, AMS Fulfillment, and a community college, SCV College of the Canyons, breaking new ground in workforce development. Read More:

AMS Earns “Best For The World” Recognition
July 3

Congratulations to AMS Fulfillment for earning a spot on the Be The Change organization’s “2018 Best For the World” list! To earn a place on this list a company must score in the top 10 percent of all B Corps on the Community section of a test. This section evaluates a company’s supplier relations, diversity, and involvement in the community. Be The Change had this to say about AMS: “While becoming a successful fulfillment company based just north of Los Angeles, AMS has discovered the benefits of employing a workforce of people facing life challenges. The company finds purpose in providing initial job opportunities, as well as skills training to take people beyond that first job.” Read More:

AMS Assists In Redefining Reentry
August 2

AMS Fulfillment is a business recognized as a trendsetter in workforce development. For many years the company has seen the value of developing an inclusive and well-trained workforce, and of hiring individuals in the SCV community that face barriers in finding and retaining employment, such as the homeless, individuals with a disability, at-risk youth, single parents, individuals affected by ageism and persons reentering society after having been ‘justice-involved’. Read More:

Congratulations ESL Graduates at AMS!!
August 8

In 2016 an English as a Second Language course (ESL) began at AMS, and 23 students signed up. After two years of dedicated hard work, nine of those individuals have completed eight separate ESL segments, or the equivalent of 2.5 semesters. Congratulations to the Graduates! We are so proud of you! Read More:

AMS: Giving the Opportunity to Start
August 21

When given the opportunity to start somewhere, an employee with a disability can be more than a great asset. Not only will the employer have a hardworking, loyal, on time employee, they will have lower turnover and an increase in overall morale of all employees. AMS Fulfillment has long known the value of individuals with disabilities in the workforce, and the company has enjoyed great success in working with organizations such as Pleasantview Industries. Read More:

B-Corp: When Balance is the Bottom Line
November 30

AMS Fulfillment is proud to be in the company of other B-Corporations such as Patagonia, and we are inspired whenever we see corporations creating a balance between profits and the future of the company, and community, employee and environmental needs. Profit is not the bottom line for AMS although our business is and has always been profitable, thriving and growing. We, like other B-Corps, intend to demonstrate that a company can be both good For the world, and profitable. Read More: