Cute Dress Industry Limited- world’s 9th greenest factory- has made a paradigm shift by working on small-scale orders for various buyers across the globe. The secret behind its uniqueness is adopting the modular production system of garments manufacturing which helps the company to achieve a higher profit margin by exporting lesser products.
When most of the traditional RMG factories focus on big volume orders from big buyers, a factory has stood out from this traditional practice and made swift progress since its beginning. Talking about Cute Dress Industry Limited. The factory has made a paradigm shift by working on small-scale orders for various buyers across the globe. You can even place an order of 50 pieces of a garment in this factory! They will work for you which is almost impossible in other traditional factories.
The interesting thing is that by following this policy the Cute Dress Industry has achieved manifolds profit than the traditional manufacturers. When it makes a profit margin by exporting 5 million dollars, other factories would make the profit by exporting large quantity production of 20 million dollars.
The secret is its uniqueness in adopting the modular production system of garments manufacturing. Besides this, it also focuses on efficiency improvement, product diversification, fabric R&D, competitive price negotiation, adopting the latest technology, and sustainability. And, the factory is a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environment Design) certified factory in the Platinum category and globally in 9th position.
While talking with Textile Today, Sheikh H M Mustafiz Managing Director, Cute Dress Industry Limited said, “I have worked myself in research and development to develop diversified products by using different combinations of fibers apart from the traditional practices. For example, instead of working with traditional cotton blends, I developed a cotton-linen blend which gave me higher profit than 100% cotton.”
Though the productivity of the modular system is comparatively low than the traditional process of RMG making, the higher price of making small quantities and diversified products makes Sheikh H M Mustafiz’s business ultimately more profitable.
According to IE & Planning Manager Md. Muraduzzaman, Cute Dress Industry uses four types of modular garment manufacturing systems. These are:
- Tailoring module: In this module, a multi-skilled operator makes 5-10 pieces of garments at a time. The operator uses a set of required machines to make the garments and the machines are placed face to face so that the operator can move from one machine to the other easily. Less standard minute value (SMV) products usually manufacture in this module.
- Multi-process modular line: In this module, 5-6 operators work to make a single garment. And a single operator performs more than one operation to make a garment. The operators use a single machine or multiple machines to perform operations. Usually, in this module orders of 100 to 400 pieces of advance basic garments are executed.
- Basic style modular line: In this system, the factory executes orders of about 500-800 pieces of garments. Seven multi-skilled operators and two helpers work in this section. Often the workers perform two or three operations by using single or multiple machines. Other conventional factories usually use 16 operators in this module.
- Critical style modular line: With this system, the factory executes the orders of garments with more than 8 minutes of SMV. Usually, the quantity of the order is more than 800. The cute Dress Industry uses only 32 machines to make critical garments in this system where traditional factories use more than 50 machines for the same work.
Nazmul, a multi-skilled operator who works in the multi-process modular line said, “I produce 50-60 garments multiple processes per hour here and I don’t feel any problem in working with multiple machines though it was initially difficult to cope up with the system.” He conducts three operations by using two machines to complete his tasks.
“Lots of practice and a strong mindset of the workers are very important for performing well in this system of RMG production,” Md. Muraduzzaman thinks. It is a tough job for many workers to become efficient in operating multiple machines and it requires great perseverance to achieve this skill.
The Cute Dress Industry recruits about 90% of operators as fresh and trains them for 3 months in their training center before placing them on the sewing line. An operator learns how to operate two to three machines at the beginning and after a few months of work in the sewing line, they are up-skilled to learn to operate more machines and conduct more operations.
Standing out in the market
By visiting several global markets, Sheikh H M Mustafiz found that there is a huge demand for small quantity orders of garments production around the world. Especially the small brands who have just started their business are struggling to manufacture their products as big factories don’t want to execute small orders. Observing this market gap as an opportunity, he decided to establish a factory with a modular production system.
Ensuring a good work environment and running the factory efficiently with such small orders became a big challenge for the Cute Dress Industry. It was also challenging to ensure a good supply chain network, rise in efficiency, human resource development, and so on.
“But at the end, dealing with such small orders has made my business more profitable compared to the traditional RMG businesses,” Sheikh H M Mustafiz said. Though productivity is comparatively low considering the big quantity orders in the modular system, the price that we get for these small orders makes the business ultimately profitable, he added.
Any factory can make a profit in such a way by managing resources efficiently, ensuring a good supply chain network, and building a robust merchandising team, Mustafiz believes.
Sustainability at the core
As the 9th LEED-Platinum certified factory in the world, Cute Dress Industry is very concerned about sustainability and they put it into real practice. The factory practices a data-driven sustainability practice where they document all their performances in terms of managing water, energy, and waste and strive to continuously improve their performance. They also focus on recycling the wastes generated during production to prevent the loss of resources.
“We regularly record the data of how much energy we are using from the national grid and how much from our solar plant, how much ground-water do we are using and how much we are recycling, we also enlist the generated waste in our factory,” Mustafiz said.
Cute Dress Industry has achieved Oeko-tex, GOTS, OCS, GRS, RWS, BCI, audited by amfori BSCI and ACCORD; they are in process of Higg Index, Fair Trade, WRAP & C-TPAT certifications besides such sustainable approaches.
Thus, the industry can be considered as a true practitioner of sustainable ready-made garment (RMG) manufacturing in the world.