Alpha Software Blog

Igloo Improves Quality Control, Cuts Costs with Digital Transformation

Igloo uses Alpha Transform to digitize forms for quality control, cutting costs by $145,000 and increasing accuracy.

File:Igloo Coolers logo.svg - Wikimedia CommonsTexas-based Igloo Products manufactures coolers and other outdoor products and housewares sold around the world. Founded in 1947, it originated the cooler category and continues to be the number one cooler brand in the world. The company offers more than 500 different products, sold by more than 110 thousand retailer storefronts worldwide.

Igloo cooler production requires accurate data collection and analysis

A Focus on Quality Control

A significant key to the success of companies that sell consumer products so is a laser-like focus on product quality, specifically quality control. The products are often sold by word of mouth, and if people begin experiencing problems with Igloo coolers and other products, they’re less likely to recommend Igloo. In addition, poor quality control leads to a higher rate of products that aren’t suitable for sale, eating into a company’s bottom line.

Igloo runs a 24-hour/seven-day-a-week 1.8-million-square-foot three-building facility in Katy, Texas. It has 121 molding machines and 18 assembly lines and manufactures 18 million coolers annually. Igloo has plans to manufacture even more, because the Swedish company, Dometic, which acquired Igloo in 2021, wants the facility to begin manufacturing for them as well.

Taking Igloo Quality Control Data Digital

Igloo has traditionally been a leader in quality control. In recent years, the company has launched a program to improve it more, called Igloo Quality IQ365. As part of that effort, Igloo Manager of Quality Control John Ng, wanted to change the way audits were done. Previously, they had been done on paper. He wanted it to become entirely digital.

Accurate data helps Igloo coolers improve product quality

“I felt that this paper audit is not value added and we needed to digitally transform it,” he explains. “The big plan was to transform everything to the cloud.”

The Best Tool for Quality Control Data: Alpha TransForm

Using the Alpha Transform no-code app builder, the company built a series of digital forms for displaying, capturing and using data. In the long run, the information will be exported to the cloud, then sent through a data warehouse API into Oracle. That’s not done yet. In the interim, the data is being exported using Power Query, Pivot, and BI.

With that infrastructure, and with the help of Alpha Transform, he says, “we now have a very low cost of ownership, and an estimated soft saving of $145,000. We are now one hundred percent paperless.”

Digitizing Paper Forms For More Accurate Data

Alpha TransForm provides accurate data for cooler production

One example of the way Alpha Transform helps is by letting Igloo combine four different kinds of forms into a single form for quality control for blow molding, injection molding, and vacuum forms. Inspectors use iPads with the form on it, and perform audits and record the results in the Transform-created digital form. In addition, a dashboard shows the status of various manufacturing machines, with either red, green or yellow colors to indicate their condition.

Many other processes and workflows have been digitized using Alpha Transform as well. Automated notifications, texts, and emails alert quality control technicians when new data and forms are available, and when machines need to be inspected.

Fewer Errors, Fewer Product Defects

igloo coolers uses Alpha TransForm to improve manufacturing quality

Errors have been reduced, because data is paperless, leading to fewer input errors. For example, when someone sees a scribbled number "5" on a paper form, and it is interpreted as a "7". The entire quality control process has been sped up, so the information is more trustworthy. New kinds of information can be captured as well, such as defects in cooler lids.

Summing up the benefits of the Alpha Transform-built system, Ng explains, “Previously, I could spend hours looking through boxes of paper and storage for a specific date, and for assembly shift information that I needed for my root cause analysis to try to figure out what happened when something wrong. Now I can just search by date and pull up the form pictures. It's helped tremendously.”


Get the Best Manufacturing Quality Management Software for Your Business

Alpha Software helps manufacturers to quickly turn paper forms into mobile apps and dashboards that collect more accurate quality data quickly and easily and measure performance.

Dramatically improve your manufacturing quality with solutions from Alpha Software

Prev Post Image
No-Code, Low-code ERP System For a Rail & Power Station Manufacturer
Next Post Image
Best No Code IOS App Builders for 2023

About Author

Amy Groden-Morrison
Amy Groden-Morrison

Amy Groden-Morrison has served more than 15 years in marketing communications leadership roles at companies such as TIBCO Software, RSA Security and Ziff-Davis. Most recently she was responsible for developing marketing programs that helped achieve 30%+ annual growth rate for analytics products at a $1Bil, NASDAQ-listed business integration Software Company. Her past accomplishments include establishing the first co-branded technology program with CNN, launching an events company on the NYSE, rebranding a NASDAQ-listed company amid a crisis, and positioning and marketing a Boston-area startup for successful acquisition. Amy currently serves as a Healthbox Accelerator Program Mentor, Marketing Committee Lead for the MIT Enterprise Forum of Cambridge Launch Smart Clinics, and on the organizing team for Boston TechJam. She holds an MBA from Northeastern University.

Related Posts
Why are Manufacturers turning to AI? 6 AI use cases
Why are Manufacturers turning to AI? 6 AI use cases
Alpha Software Discusses Lessons Learned from Boeing Crisis in Inc. Magazine
Alpha Software Discusses Lessons Learned from Boeing Crisis in Inc. Magazine
Digital Transformation is Tough, but Worth It
Digital Transformation is Tough, but Worth It

The Alpha platform is the only unified mobile and web app development and deployment environment with distinct “no-code” and “low-code” components. Using the Alpha TransForm no-code product, business users and developers can take full advantage of all the capabilities of the smartphone to turn any form into a mobile app in minutes, and power users can add advanced app functionality with Alpha TransForm's built-in programming language. IT developers can use the Alpha Anywhere low-code environment to develop complex web or mobile business apps from scratch, integrate data with existing systems of record and workflows (including data collected via Alpha TransForm), and add additional security or authentication requirements to protect corporate data.