THE STORY OF SERVICES PLUS

Located in Green Bay, Wisconsin, Services Plus is a privately held company with 150 employees who work 24 hours a day, Monday through Friday, and on weekends when necessary.

Here, our employees feel like they’re part of something special. They’re part of a family heritage of enjoying their work, enjoying challenges, and enjoying overcoming them even more. That’s what our founder, Marvin Schumacher, instilled in all of us.

“Golf is dumb, and you can buy fish.”

“Starvin’ Marvin” Schumacher was bored.  After selling a successful warehousing business in his mid-50s, he tried to retire…and hated it.  Being a serial entrepreneur, he couldn’t idle through life on the golf course or in a fishing boat.  Instead, he founded Services Plus in 1984 with his son, Mike, and Art Schmidt of U.S. Venture.

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Business as a family tradition.

When current owners Mike and Tom Schumacher were growing up, business was part of daily life. When they were in grade school, where there should have been a two-car attached garage, there was instead their father’s beer and liquor store.   As high schoolers, their father bought a sweeping compound company and gave it to them (at minimum wage) to run. It was a simple product, basically sawdust mixed with oil or wax to keep dust down when sweeping floors. Instead of buying sawdust by the bag, Marvin bought it by the railcar. But the business wasn’t close to a railway so Mike and Tom had to manually unload each boxcar with aluminum coal shovels. It usually took them a week to unload one car.   The business was all theirs. Their father never showed up or worried about it. Mike and Tom had to figure out how to do everything. They took the orders, made the product, wrote the shipping papers, dealt with the truckers, did all the accounting…everything.

“That was one of our first tastes of business.  It was a great primer on business for both of us.”

– Tom Schumacher

After their father sold the business, Mike went to work for his father in the warehousing business, starting driving a lift truck and working his way up to managing a warehouse, customer service, and eventually sales.   Tom went to college and earned an MBA in accounting, while running his own business to earn his way through school. After becoming a CPA and working in the corporate world for a while, he joined his brother and Services Plus, to give Dad a retirement offer he couldn’t refuse, and have made the company their own over the past 15 years.

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Owners giving out turkeys to employees.

Scrappy survivalists.

In our first 15 years, Services Plus grew to 150 employees. At our peak, we had 250 full time employees and as many as 150 temporary workers, but then the 2008 recession hit and we contracted by almost half.   To survive, we applied our innovation inwardly. We took what we do for clients, looked at our strengths and resources, and pivoted to focus on contract manufacturing and paper converting.

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We’re a scrappy organization. We like to have fun while working hard and getting stuff done.”

– Tom Schumacher

Four attitudes for success. 

Marvin Schumacher inspired the four key attitudes of Services Plus when the company was born.  Ever the optimist, when things weren’t going well, he was fond of saying, “This is usually the time when something happens.”  And it would.  His never-say-die attitude permeates our company.

1. Connecting for success.

It’s not networking.  It’s connecting with a purpose.  We grew up collaborating; it’s what we naturally do as a company.  We foster connections with technical experts that we can contact when we need them.  It keeps costs low for our customers and allows us to offer powerful resources when needed.  If we don’t know, we know where to get it.

2. Always finding a better way.

We like to say our solutions are “the best way we’ve thought of…, so far.”  Nothing makes us happier than seeing one of our great inventions overcome by an even better idea.  That’s what we constantly strive for: simpler, leaner, and more elegant ways of doing things.  Whenever possible, we substitute automation in place of labor to simplify product flow.

3. There are no limits.

The speed of light is just a number. When you realize that, even the biggest challenge is attainable. We don’t put limits on jobs. We encourage our team to be open to ideas and solutions.

It’s not unusual for someone to come to us because they’re stumped. They know what they want, but not necessarily how to do it. Even if we’ve never done it before, if we think we can do it, we try to say, “yes.”  We thrive on the energy of finding answers and improvements “inside the box.”

4. Knowing where we’re at.

It’s more than numbers. Numbers are just outcomes.  If you can’t relate the numbers back to something actionable, then what good are the numbers?

We run a daily Profit & Loss statement.  It’s normal for us, and we’ve been doing it for a long time.  We have goals for every line, every shift, every day.  We measure our efficiency, quality and safety daily.  We run incentive programs to encourage good performance, and we independently track everything to continuously improve performance.

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Our guiding principles.

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“Nowhere but up!”

For the first 10 years we went from 0 to something.  We spent the next 15 years making Services Plus a real company.  We put in the systems and staffing in place to serve large companies and meet the standards they’re looking for from their suppliers.

In 2012 we entered our third chapter, charting our own course, reacting less, and responding and anticipating customer and market needs more effectively to enhance brand impact and performance.

The relentless pursuit of efficiency, quality and safety drives us.  We’re laying a solid foundation for consistent double digit growth by investing in equipment, facilities, systems, and personnel.  We’re ready to apply our innovation to additional areas and see what we can do for you.

What’s the future of Services Plus?  “Nowhere but up!”