PLAINFIELD – Today, U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) announced that Westminster Tool Incorporated – a Plainfield-based manufacturer of custom injection mold solutions for the medical, aerospace, and consumer packaging markets – is this week’s “Murphy’s Monday Manufacturer.” Ray Coombs, Jr. founded Westminster Tool out of the basement of his home in 1997. In less than two years, Westminster Tool flourished, and Coombs moved into a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility located in Plainfield, Connecticut. Since then, Westminster Tool has grown and expanded so much that the business opened up a second operating facility in Sterling, Connecticut.
Throughout its rapid growth, Westminster Tool continues to understand the importance of supporting the local workforce by helping its hard-working employees gain new skills and find meaningful careers. Westminster Tool recently expanded its workforce to include 33 employees and invested $500,000 in employee cross-training that will enable workers to acquire new, more valuable skills. In an effort to reduce the skills gap in Connecticut’s manufacturing workforce, Westminster Tool implemented an in-house training program called “Westminster Academy”. It has also partnered with the Eastern Advanced Manufacturing Alliance to promote manufacturing as a career choice, facilitate educational events, and directly assist students and potential employees interested in the industry. Furthermore, the company has made it possible for four of their employees to complete the Advanced Manufacturing Program at Quinnebaug Valley Community College. As a result of the educational and training benefits provided to Westminster Tool employees, the manufacturer has had a very high employee retention rate over the past 20 years.
“Westminster is constantly investing in the skills, training, knowledge, and well-being of their employees,” said Murphy. “It comes as no surprise that Westminster Tool is seeing those investments pay off with increased sales, lower rates of employee turn-over, greater customer satisfaction, and rapid and continuous growth. Plain and simple: when companies give back to their communities by helping residents attain valuable, real-world skills, it sets everyone up for success. Westminster Tool is leading by example.”
“The collaboration between our local government and small manufacturers in Connecticut is helping small businesses like Westminster Tool thrive,” said Ray Coombs, Jr., founder of Westminster Tool.
The manufacturing industry plays a crucial role throughout Connecticut communities, creating new jobs and accelerating our state’s economic recovery. Today, Connecticut’s 4,602 manufacturers account for 10.2% of the state’s jobs and 87% of the state’s total exports. In order to protect and grow manufacturing jobs in Connecticut, Murphy has introduced two pieces of legislation that aim to strengthen existing standards and prioritize the purchase of American-made goods, the 21st Century Buy American Act and the American Jobs Matter Act.