Although it has recently come under new ownership, Precise Fabrication has a rich history of manufacturing in Beatrice.
Randy Kinney, who purchased the company in July 2018 said he decided to buy the company for several reasons. Kinney said the company was well run before he purchased it, has a similar customer base to the fabrication company he owns in Lincoln, IntoMetal, and because he thinks Precise Fabrication has room to grow.
Kinney said Precise Fabrication employs 28 Beatrice locals and employs people for a diverse group of jobs including office work, laser operation, and both manual and robotic welding.
Kinney said that local lawn mower manufacturers Exmark and Worldlawn Power Equipment are clients of Precise Fabrication, along with many other manufacturers across the Midwest.
City officials have been helpful in the process of purchasing the company, Kinney said, and they helped to resolve problems quickly. The company brings in employees from all over Gage County and the surrounding area, but most of the staff comes from Beatrice.
Kinney said he employs more than 125 people at both of his businesses, and he takes pride in supporting those people and their families.
While southeastern Nebraska is strong in agriculture, Kinney said that it is important for a community to also have manufacturing. He said agriculture can be volatile, and manufacturing is a more stable industry.
When searching for employees, Kinney looks for work ethic, teamwork, and communication skills. He said those skills can be learned from many different places.
“We’re just trying to utilize the same work ethic that I think a lot of people that have farming backgrounds were raised with,” Kinney said. “We can be just as successful in an industrial setting with the same talents and skills that you can be in Agriculture.”
The company faces the typical challenges a company of its size faces and must work to overcome them. While Precise Fabrication is looking for ways to grow, he said that they need to ensure that their growth is sustainable. He said having the proper real estate, buildings, and employees is vital to running a business.
Precise Fabrication aims to give back to its community through philanthropic work as well. Kinney said the company works with a backpack program, the Beatrice YMCA, and the Beatrice electric car program.
The company has also worked with Diller-Odell High School to run mock interviews, allowing students to get valuable business experience they may not otherwise receive. Precise Fabrication also works with Exmark to support United Way.
Precise Fabrication works to reach out to local high school students and their parents to show them that experience in manufacturing can be very valuable. Kinney said he believes not all students need a four-year degree. He said the company has invested money in new technology to attract younger employees.
Last year Precise Fabrication took out a half page ad in the Diller-Odell yearbook. He said the business was proud to support the yearbook, and they found it a great way to reach students and get them thinking about working in manufacturing. Kinney said the company often covers the cost of college for young employees.
Kinney said Precise fabrication recently began a second shift, which allows part-time employees more schedule flexibility.
Engineer and Project Manager Doug Casey said he has worked for Precise Fabrication for 10 years and has worked in fabrication since he graduated Beatrice High School. He said both the previous and current ownership at Precise Fabrication has been excellent.
Casey said the company helps to employ many different people in the area, which is very beneficial.
“We offer jobs to everyone that needs a job, and that’s a help," Casey said.
He also said that he enjoys what he does, and finds his work rewarding.
“I just like what I do, and this is a nice place to do it,” Casey said.