Chain Link Fence Manufacturers Institute
WHO WE ARE
The Chain Link Fence Manufacturers Institute (CLFMI) was started in 1960 by a group of small manufacturing firms who wanted to be able to compete effectively with the larger, integrated steel companies which dominated the market after World War II. As these steel companies gradually left the chain link fence business to concentrate on larger markets (consumer products, automobiles, etc.,) the CLFMI member firms became more dominant in the marketplace. They soon realized that the future of their market depended upon their ability to create consumer confidence in the product and to market chain link as not only the most economical fencing product but also as one that provided quality workmanship and safety.
The CLFMI members realized that industries which do not provide the consumer some level of self-regulation and standard-setting are industries destined to be regulated and monitored by government mandates and oversight.
Over the years, manufacturers have joined together through CLFMI to raise demand for their products, and to help manufacturers become more profitable, in several ways.
- establishing accepted standards for chain link fence production, by working with ASTM and other recognized standards-setting bodies
- establishing safety standards for proper use of chain link fence materials (in conjunction with safety organizations such as the Consumer Products Safety Commission)
- providing technical guidance and assistance to government agencies regarding minimum specifications for various chain link applications
- embarking on several targeted national marketing programs to increase awareness of, and demand for, chain link products among residential, commercial, industrial, and governmental customers
- encouraging product innovation by sponsoring an award for unique usage of chain link materials
In addition, CLFMI has assisted members in controlling and reducing costs through an array of programs, including:
- the establishment of a standardized bar coding system to help control inventory costs
- assisting members in reducing the cost of complying with environmental laws by determining industry standards and gaining government acceptance of representative vs. universal site testing
- embarking on industry-wide product testing to allow members to use credible, third-party data to market their products’ capabilities
- sponsoring production training programs for plant managers
- holding meetings featuring speakers on effective management techniques, trend analysis, and economic forecasts
Perhaps most importantly, Chain Link Fence Manufacturers Institute, CLFMI has provided an open forum for member companies to identify industry-wide challenges and to work together to meet these challenges while maintaining their independent places in the marketplace. CLFMI acts as industry spokesperson that gets the attention of government and private sector decision-makers in ways no individual company could do.