Adding Value in Everything They Do

Fuller Industrial Corporation
Written by William Young

Fuller Industrial Corporation is a Canadian company serving the mining industry through the production and fabrication of pipe spool, rubber lining, and protective coating for tanks and piping systems, from singular fittings to entire tank and piping systems for plants.

The company was founded in Sudbury, Ontario in 2004. Its formation was preceded by over two decades of business in central Canada for the Fuller family, which began with pipe fabrication company Abraflex, founded by president Bill Fuller in 1980. Present-day Fuller Industrial president Jeff Fuller (Bill’s son) joined on with Abraflex in 1993; a few years later, the company purchased carbon steel pipe, tank, and assembly fabricator Basco Steel. Both companies amalgamated not long after, with new president Jeff Fuller ultimately forming Fuller Industrial in 2004.

The company expanded its enterprise in the years to follow, growth which included the creation of Fuller Western in Edmonton, Alberta, which would eventually be sold to the CASL Group of companies (an assessment center for construction management diplomas, which Fuller still shares an alliance with). Today, Fuller Industrial Corporation serves a global mining clientele, with projects taking place on every continent and with newly patented systems and products to serve its customers in every way possible.

Among its considerable list of services and products, the company provides detailed engineering services, including pipe and valve fittings, rubber / ceramic lining (its specialty service), corrosion and abrasion control products, painting, quality control, and more. It also offers services in logistics with export packaging, shipping, and field work. It is ASME-certified (American Society for Mechanical Engineers) for pressure-piping as well as pipe and boiler repair.

Fuller believes in adding value to all its endeavours, especially through the delivery and maintenance of process piping systems and corrosion / abrasion control. On a more holistic level, the company prefers to add value through a creative use of technology and continuous improvement on its offerings, in a manner that is quick and cost-effective for clients. These values are further promoted in what the company calls “The Fuller Way,” a philosophy that stresses delivering projects on time and to specifications, with an eye on achieving long-term success and building foundational relationships. Elements like a strong organizational structure, accountability-based management, properly trained and motivated workers, and processes based on both standardization and continuous improvement add to the success of this philosophy.

Another leading tenet of the company’s practices is its commitment to all-inclusive pricing, an in-house system designed to give project and procurement personnel transparent pricing figures in large-scale pipe fabrication projects. In these projects, Fuller tracks the costs within all its services and presents each component cost (along with material and labour) in an appendix. This allows the customer to scale a project or change requirements as needed to their specifications at any point across a project’s life cycle.

Throughout all its projects, Fuller demands a high commitment to safety, healthy work environments, and a superior product from the entire team. The company also recognizes its responsibility to environmentally conscious practices (especially important in a company supporting the modern mining industry) and considers it a duty to remain open and committed to its nearby Ontario communities as much as it to itself and its customers. A key binder to all these approaches is the idea of respect, one that extends to both the company’s considerable clientele and to its employees, boosting the efficacy of its continuous improvement model.

Lean culture is another value the company takes seriously, an approach that has led to continued client and partner satisfaction. ‘Lean’ represents a corporate framework that is growing in esteem throughout many areas of industry, with the goal of eliminating waste of any kind to create a robust yet nimble final product. Another value of lean culture is one familiar to Fuller, that of continuous improvement. By focusing on both principles, Fuller Industrial can offer a product that is, by nature, more efficient and ultimately excels in meeting the needs of customers while keeping workers at every level involved in the process.

Embracing lean culture and promoting all-inclusive pricing are not the only examples of how Fuller Industrial takes a different approach from its competitors; in all respects, the company uses a mindset of innovation to ensure client success and satisfaction. For example, Fuller barcodes and tags its products with a unique serial number to provide full traceability and transparency in its processes. The company also maintains a deep library of safety, technical, inspection, and test plans (ITPs) to benefit its customers across myriad fields (i.e. oil and gas, mining, flue-gas desulphurization, water treatment, nuclear) and of varying sizes. Measures like these add to the company’s strong emphasis on relationships in all it does, as it demonstrates both a commitment to transparency in its operations and a willingness to go the extra mile in being the go-to company in its part of the mining sector.

In recent years, the company has added robotic welding and lining equipment to its operations, building on its reputation as an advanced manufacturer that embraces modern solutions to modern challenges.

The company’s drive toward innovation has also benefited the overall mining industry, as with Fuller’s part in developing a rubber-lined piping system design handbook. This project was conceived when the company recognized the industry’s lack of a set standard for rubber-lined piping systems on both a local and international level. This new system the team developed in conjunction with input from engineering groups and customers provides center-to-end dimension standards, regardless of end termination style. This has helped to end many problems with end set off gaskets, messy cut groove specifications, and more, yet another example of the continuous improvement at the heart of the corporation that benefits both its own operations and the plans and ideas of mining industry clientele.

Fuller Industrial Corporation began from local roots in its Sudbury location and has risen across 40 years into becoming a global force in its sector. Today, Jeff Fuller oversees the company his father began, and his own children count themselves among the roughly 80 employees that comprise the Fuller workforce. The company recognizes that its community of Sudbury has deep traditions related to providing mining supplies on an international level, and Sudbury itself is recognized as possessing one of the largest mining and supply clusters in the world. With over 450 mining supply services in its region, Fuller looks to continue to stand out from the rest by offering a strong labour force along with support from local government, educational institutions, and businesses in its endeavours. The Fuller name is one that has been strongly associated with Sudbury and its local community for many years, as well as within the Canadian mining industry, and Fuller Industrial Corporation aims to keep it that way as it moves into 2023.

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