Made in the USA: More Than Just a Selling Point

Homegrown – How SafeRack Thrives in a Global Economy

While many U.S. manufacturers have been forced to move their manufacturing facilities overseas to remain competitive, co-founders Rob Honeycutt and Fred Harmon of SixAxis, the parent company of SafeRack, have not only found a way to remain in the United States but thrive as well.

In fact, the co-founders have reduced direct labor costs while experiencing rapid sales growth – which has led to building a larger manufacturing facility and ultimately required a much larger technology focused team.

This success begs the question of how SafeRack, which manufactures railcar loading platforms, truck loading platforms and fall protection created a success story while keeping its operations in the United States. Honeycutt and Harmon attribute much of their success to their on-going commitment to technological innovations in a customer-centric environment.

Key Stats Showing Labor Force Overseas Is Growing (Key Message: SafeRack sticks to its brand promise of hiring American):

  • Labor costs are the main driver of corporations sending jobs overseas and U.S. multinationals shifted millions of jobs overseas in the 2000s.
  • In 2013, U.S. overseas affiliates employed 14 million workers. The four industries most affected were technology, call centers, human resources, and manufacturing. The 14 million outsourced jobs are almost double the 7.5 million unemployed Americans. If all those jobs returned, it would be enough to also hire the 5.7 million who are working part-time but would prefer full-time positions.
  • A majority of U.S. companies will hire foreign workers in 2017.  Some 55% of the 442 employers surveyed recently in a Harris Poll said they will hire from workers overseas at an increase of 21% over 2016 levels.


“Made in the USA”. You’ve heard that before. Many companies tout that phrase when their products are manufactured here in the states. But in today’s world, this phrase can sometimes be glossed over, mixed in with other selling points or simply ignored altogether. But at SafeRack, “Made in the USA” is more than just a selling point. It’s a promise. A promise to our customers that every product we deliver will be high quality, durable, safe and ethically made. Because being made in America means something.

Despite national trends that have companies shifting operations overseas, SafeRack has remained unwavering in its commitment to hire American and manufacture in the states. And living up to this promise has ultimately proven successful for SafeRack and ErectaStep, SixAxis’s other brand that manufacturers metal stairs. There has been significant growth since the opening of the Andrews, SC plant where all of SafeRack’s products are manufactured. And over the years SafeRack and ErectaStep have become industry leaders in the market, known for their innovation, expertise and superior customer service. And part of the reason for this success is SafeRack’s focus on the quality of both their products and their employees. Because SafeRack’s American workers provide better quality control and daily hands-on attention. And because we work locally we avoid the long delays and miscommunications that are often associated with working abroad. Custom solutions can be quickly turned around domestically with our engineering team collaborating with manufacturing to get it right and engineered to our high standards the first time. As an innovative company, our US-based operation allows us to be agile, quickly exploring new ideas, testing and improving our products.

With SafeRack’s promise to hire American, despite national trends of hiring abroad, you can be confident that you’ll have a partner throughout your project with the ability to be agile, efficient and available and most importantly you’ll have the best product possible knowing it’s been made by American hands.

New ways of thinking lead to opportunity and growth

SafeRack co-founders Fred Harmon and Rob Honeycutt stand in front of the global company’s 225,000-square-foot facility in Andrews, S.C.

With all the growth that SafeRack has seen and all of the opportunities ahead that are still in the pipeline, it’s exciting that SafeRack recently announced that they’re building a $20 million expansion to their Andrews, SC manufacturing plant. This will allow for product expansion – both new products and higher volume of existing products – and equally important, will result in the addition of hundreds of new American jobs. The American workforce is the best in the world and combined with the quality of American manufacturing, customers can be confident that they’re getting the best products possible when they purchase from SafeRack. Because, at SafeRack, “Made in America” is a promise not only to their customers but also to their employees and ultimately to America itself.

Read about SafeRack’s expansion.

Updated construction as of October 30