Interview with Les Sommerville: Benefits of Working With CILS International
Firstly, I would like to know a little bit about your manufacturing capabilities, what would you say is a typical order quantity for CILS?
“We have over 18 label presses with varying configurations so it’s easy for us to produce any quantity of labels quickly and efficiently whether labels are needed in the millions or hundreds. For example, we regularly supply several million of our CILS-Cryo-196 labels for global clinical trials, as well as supplying ‘start up’ laboratories with label orders in the hundreds for smaller scale research projects.
That’s interesting and how quickly do you turn orders around?
“Well that very much depends on whether the label is blank or printed and the complexity of any data we may be printing. Generally, our lead time is 1-2 weeks but as we manufacture everything in-house we are well positioned to turn things around sooner if the customer’s need is urgent. During the Covid pandemic we were turning around critical label orders within 24 hours even when the study data wasn’t known at the time of order.”
What types of labels do you manufacture?
We provide a wide range of durable labels for laboratory settings. This includes our Cold & Cryo range for fridge/freezer storage, solvent resistant labels, removable labels & solutions for asset management.
Are there any other products that your customers may not know you can supply?
“This is a really good question. Because we heavily promote the labels that we manufacture and have a reputation for overcoming label challenges, people don’t realise that we supply label printers, ribbons, software, scanners and even label applicators. We have worked with thousands of laboratories over the years, all of which have slightly different processes or set ups and this means me have a huge amount of experience to recommend the right printing solution for each laboratory based on the specific need of the customer.
What support can your customers expect form you?
“Firstly, me or one of my colleagues will be allocated to your account to look after your current and future requirements from a technical and account management point of view. We take a consultative and pro-active approach to account management; whether our customers need to discuss a new label/project requirement or need on-going support with their printers or label software we’re on hand to help. We’re also here to provide guidance when it comes to complex databases that need to be printed by the customer or by us as part of our bureau print service.
Where are you based?
“The whole team work out of our Label Technology Centre in Worthing – this includes both our manufacturing and sales/support teams. That said, we regularly visit customers, customers visit us and of course we can meet virtually if preferred. We also have the availability for technical support to come to you should a significant need arise.”
Finally, tell me a little about any recent innovations that have benefitted your customers?
“Yes, in fact we recently invested in our on-site test capabilities. Our customers love that we have test facilities and in particular a -80oC freezer. There is nothing better than being able to take a customers test tube, applying our recommended label and showing the results by video to speed up any validation process or provide pre-purchase confidence.”
…so how would I enquire about this service or indeed anything that we have discussed here today?
“Call me! This is the quickest and easiest way of reaching me but if preferred, just drop me an email or Teams invite to get the ball rolling.”
Les, thank you for your time.