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Timeless design and old-fashioned customer service lead to Durham Bookcases' success
Where: Durham, North Carolina
ShopBot Tool: 96 X 48 PRSalpha (purchased in 2001)
Furniture maker Philip Fletcher founded Durham Bookcases back in
1995. "Our goal from the beginning was to build bookcases at competitive
prices with high quality workmanship." As time has passed, Durham Bookcases
has grown their offerings to include custom-built entertainment centers,
wall units, office furniture and bedroom furniture, and increased the
variety of woods, sizes, & options to continue to please their customers.
Fletcher says his guiding philosophy has always remained the same. "I'm a custom maker. It always works best if my customers meet with me one on one, to discuss their needs fully. That way, the customer is pleased with the outcome. I know my furniture is going to last -- so I want the customer to be happy with their purchase for a long, long time!"
It was about 10 years ago that Fletcher added digital fabrication technology to the core of his manufacturing process. He contacted Durham neighbor ShopBot Tools and has been pleased with the tool, and his relationship with ShopBot, ever since.
"My ShopBot is a workhorse," says Fletcher. "Quite simply, it's reliable." Over the years Fletcher has found that the ShopBot's easy interface is a boon because it's easy to train employees how to use the software. Asked how long it takes to bring a new employee up to speed, Fletcher didn't hesitate to answer: "Twenty-four hours."
When it comes to technical problems, Fletcher smiles and says, "It usually turns out to be a user issue, not a problem with the tool. Customer service has always been friendly and available when we need it."
Durham Bookcases has been in business long enough to have experienced busy times and quieter times, and has witnessed shifts in customer attitudes and interests. "There was a trend in recent years for customers to want only 'green' materials," notes Fletcher. "I like to point out that by using quality woods is the best way to be green -- because furniture that lasts for 25 years and more doesn't ever need to be recycled!"