SHL Healthcare – A Global Healthcare Partner
We learn how SHL Healthcare invests in talent and technology over a global network.
SHL Healthcare focuses on manufacturing solutions for the MedTech industry, with particular regard to patient handling and pressure mattress systems, among others. The company serves as a contract manufacturing company, and a contract designing company and has manufacturing operations in Bulgaria and China alongside its R&D premises in Sweden.
“Our strength lies in being a leading contract design and manufacturer for these solutions, which is supported by all the required ISO13405 certifications needed to sell our products in Europe, the US and around the globe,” explains Per Bjorkman, Director of Business Development for SHL Healthcare.
“We have an elite team of industry experts with key knowledge and extensive experience in product development. In fact, we are perhaps the largest contract manufacturer of medical lifting slings globally.”
A Global Effort
Speaking with Bjorkman, it feels like the company is at the dawn of a new era. Following the stresses of Covid, and everything that has come with that, it is clear Bjorkman is excited to be finally getting out into the world again and interacting with customers directly.
“After two years of Covid, all we want is to get back in the field and meet people,” Bjorkman says.
“We want to show customers our capabilities, our knowledge, and our people.
It’s actually happening right now as this Autumn and Winter will be the perfect time to catch up. I really believe that it’s essential to meet customers in person so they can touch and feel products and be able to get the explanations they need right away. Our ability to meet digitally around the world has really helped us to do so much, but I think you need both.”
Having access to the full range of communication options is essential for SHL Healthcare, as it is a company with a truly global presence, to the point where many customers also use SHL Healthcare as an impromptu logistics provider, among other services.
“We sometimes help customers with global logistics,” Bjorkman explains. “We’ve helped several customers from our European-based logistics centre. For example, if you have a customer operating in several different countries, instead of them taking care of logistics through all their subsidiaries, they can handle it through our customer service department which would then facilitate the tasks.”
As well as having a logistics network that can reach all around the world, SHL Healthcare also sources talent from all over the world.
“Over the last two years we’ve invested a lot in talent in Sweden, China and Bulgaria,” Bjorkman points out.
“In China, we brought in engineers with experience from other major players in the MedTech industry. In Sweden, we’ve used a similar approach by setting up a Centre of Excellence in the textile capital of the country to attract talents that offer abundant knowledge. We’ve also hired experts with diverse cultural backgrounds from countries such as the USA, France, and Italy. It’s fantastic to have these new additions to the team, especially with their know-how.”
The Textile Centre of Excellence in Borås, the textile capital of Sweden, will extend and streamline support for early project phases in close collaboration with customers.
Bjorkman explains, “We started the Centre of Excellence this year. In the old days, we used to send samples back and forward to China, while trying to balance time zones and language barriers. The ideal goal is to work directly with our Centre of Excellence on design transfers, new product developments, and getting samples backwards and forwards quickly All of which to reduce the overall development time wherever possible.”
The Centre of Excellence is also part of the good working environment SHL Healthcare works hard to create to nurture and retain talent.
“We have a lot of open communication between departments, and I believe it is a fun workplace to work in. It’s very open-minded, with a flat management structure compared to other companies,” Bjorkman says. “We find good talent through structured hiring processes using top tier head-hunters.
We are thus very lucky to often have highly competent individuals join our team that understands and works well with each other.”
It is a strong team offering a diverse range of services built around the customers’ needs.
“We’re very customer-centric in our offering, working directly with customers from our teams in R&D, Quality, Business Development,” Bjorkman points out.
“We also offer testing services that test products to meet the highest industry standards.”
The Source of Innovation
SHL Healthcare values its people because they are essential to the innovation that is vital for the company’s growth.
“Our innovation comes from the people themselves,” Bjorkman says. “Our production is accurate and of premium quality. We set very high standards for ourselves, and I think a lot of our team members really appreciate that the standards are set so high. If there are challenges, we inform the customer directly to find the most suitable solution, all to ensure the excellence of the products and service we give to our customers is never compromised.”
Bjorkman is also passionate about ensuring that SHL Healthcare’s teams have access to the best possible tools.
“We like to buy the latest manufacturing equipment available. Right now, we’re working a lot with the automation of production, which is new for our products,” Bjorkman says. “There is always pressure to automate. A lot of other companies in the business are moving to lower-wage countries all around the world. Our alternative is to keep up with automation to warrant acceptable pricing. We try to stay ahead of the customers’ needs and to prepare them for upcoming trends, whilst keeping costs down.”
To stay ahead, it is essential to have a strong vision of the future, and it is clear Bjorkman has big plans for SHL Healthcare.
“Our key focus right now is to get the new facility in Bulgaria ramped up,” he says excitedly. “Our first products will be coming out of the factory in a couple of months, with a plan in place on how to fully utilize production. The next site will then be in North America, which will allow us to provide even more prompt support to customers all over the world. In order to continuously improve our offering as a global MedTech manufacturer, we always have a growth plan in place to meet increasing demands for output. Our efforts in the expansion will surely reflect such growth.”
Erik Bolmgren, CEO of SHL Healthcare
Per Bjorkman, Director of Business Development, SHL Healthcare