In life and work there are always shortcuts you can take, but they come at a price. Some shortcuts are beneficial and some are detrimental. A positive shortcut for a business might be finding a way to optimize manufacturing processes. A negative shortcut might be buying cheaper (lower quality) materials in order to reduce costs and have a higher profit margin.
When we first started this business, we were met with one of these types of choices...a "shortcut". We could do all of our manufacturing and assembly overseas OR we could work with a local program that helps place youth with special needs into local jobs.
As it turns out our founders (Todd Weimer's) aunt was mentally challenged and operations manager (Nathan Bosch) has the world's biggest heart and had worked in the past with youth with special needs. So for these guys, they wanted to give it a try.
A year and a half later, it's been working very well and it is an important part of the business here at VSSL.
VSSL won a "UROC" award from the Abbotsford Youth Commission for this initiative:
So yeah, we could save a lot of money doing everything overseas, but the job and sense of self worth we help provide for these guys is worth more to us than the money we would save.