Investing in the Future
October 17, 2016
Written By Adam Buckallew
The MFA Oil Board of Directors works with the cooperative’s management team to guide the company in its mission of serving the needs of members. One of the company’s core principles is a commitment to operational excellence, and this has become increasingly important in today’s business climate.
“We’ve made a lot of changes in the last couple of years to bring our operational performance up to speed,” says Floyd Buckman, who represents District 7 on the MFA Oil Board of Directors. “These moves were all necessary to keep our cooperative competitive. Technology is changing so fast these days, and we’re making great strides to stay ahead of the curve.”
The work to improve MFA Oil’s operational excellence has ranged from upgrades to bigger tanker trucks capable of hauling more fuel to behind-the-scenes improvements, such as new software to improve logistical support to drivers and optimize their delivery routes.
Tank monitors and right-sizing have been other areas of focus. Buckman is one of several customers to sign up for MFA Oil’s Auto-Fill Program, which utilizes tank-monitoring technology that factors in past usage and weather conditions to determine when customers will need their tanks refilled. He’s been pleased with the program because he no longer needs to check his tank’s gauge or worry about running out of propane.
“The Auto-Fill Program is convenient for customers and a great way to improve propane delivery efficiency by cutting down on unnecessary trips,” Buckman says. “It’s a simple solution that really improves the productivity of our drivers and plant operations.”
Other recent operational improvements within the cooperative have included an overhaul of the company’s inventory management system, outfitting delivery trucks with handheld computer tablets and opening the MFA Oil Business Support Campus in Moberly, Mo. The Business Support Campus features improved lab facilities, a larger truck shop with better equipment and a centralized warehouse for the company’s parts and packaged goods.
“You have to be willing to adapt and change with the times, and we’ve made some wise investments in technology, equipment and facilities that should greatly benefit MFA Oil for many years,” Buckman says. “These changes should help to improve our service and allow us to continue delivering high-quality energy products and services to our customers economically. We’re proud of the results we’ve seen thus far and the willingness of our employees to embrace these changes and keep the company moving forward.”