The WEEE Directive, which sets targets for the recovery and recycling of ten categories of electrical and electronic equipment, has done much to reduce the amount of e-waste that ends up in landfill. By giving a second life
to products that would otherwise become e-waste so too has FLP Solutions.
The Middlewich-based firm specialises in supplying refurbished (and new) printers, parts and IT equipment to resellers, IT maintenance companies and organisations nationwide.
It started trading in 2001 and quickly established itself as a major player in the IT spares industry, initially supplying IT maintenance companies with refurbished IT hardware items, in particular HP laptop parts.
“We then diversified to sell both new and refurbished laser printers, MFPs and printer parts, again mainly HP. But we now also offer many other leading brands’ desktop PC and server spares,” explained Business Development Manager Andrew Cartwright.
FLP Solutions buys in redundant IT and print hardware, strips the kit down completely, thoroughly cleans everything and repairs any broken parts before putting products and parts up for resale. The company maintains that there is no such thing as ‘obsolete’, promising to source any specific piece of IT hardware requested by individual customers, as well as helping them to dispose of that equipment and upgrade to the latest kit when it’s time to change.
Cartwright said: “With ever increasing pressure on profitability, having the opportunity to lower the cost of maintaining IT equipment and printer fleets by utilising refurbished spare parts is an attractive proposition for our customer base.
“In addition, supplying refurbished printers over new ones enables them to offer a lower cost and ‘greener’ solution to customers for whom cost and carbon savings are key drivers. In the main, a refurbished device costs between 30 and 50% less than when new.”
Same day delivery
The firm has grown year-on-year and its headcount now totals 24, ten of whom are engineers. The company has expanded both the business premises and its warehousing capacity and today has a 12,000 sq. ft. custom-built warehouse that houses some 60,000 items, all of which are available for urgent same day or next business day delivery. FLP Solutions partners with its customers, stock-holding what they need, ensuring full control of every aspect of the supply chain. “Reducing spend and inventory whilst maintaining high service levels and quality is a non-negotiable for our customers, which is why, as a trusted business partner, quality is front and centre for us,” Cartwright said.
The company has built up a quality assured supplier base that has been tried and tested. Its quality promise is backed up by three ISO accreditations – ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and ISO 27001. Quality management meetings with departmental heads are held every month to discuss quality and processes, ensuring ongoing compliance.
The firm has also invested heavily in its packaging facilities, using memory foam and airbags to ensure that every order gets to its destination safely. This has resulted in a record low of 0.04% of returns due to inadequate or poor packaging.
Its overall returns rate is equally impressive, currently sitting at less than 1%, way below the industry standard of 3-5%, according to Cartwright’s estimate. “Customer returns have improved year-onyear and that’s a key area of focus for us,” he said. He added: “We pride ourselves on meeting our customer promise, which is to ensure the right equipment is where it needs to be, on time and in good working order – that’s critical to our customers’ business. That’s why we are open ‘til late every day and guarantee to ship orders overnight. All our products also come with a three-month guarantee, which provides an extra layer of assurance.”