What July Fourth Means to Key Source International
KSI Celebrates 10 Years of TAA Compliance and GSA Approval
On the Fourth of July, the country celebrates its independence, honors the sacrifices of its forefathers, and looks back at the amazing foresight demonstrated in delivering the democratic state we now call the United States of America. With the backdrop of this year’s presidential election, we are once again reminded of the many freedoms we enjoy and hold dear as Americans. Being a U.S.-based company has special meaning to KSI, as we take stock of how far we’ve come, look to the future of manufacturing, and reiterate our commitment to each and every one of our dedicated staff.
Upon the company’s launch, founder Robert A.D. Schwartz’s aspiration to produce the vast majority of KSI products on a local basis was a significant goal he sought in order to facilitate job creation and economic growth — an objective helped along by the heightened security priorities that transformed the way we live and work after 9/11. Within three years of the tragedy, the government issued FIPS (Federal Information Processing Standards) Publication 201 that mandated its employees’ and contractors’ adherence to stringent security requirements, including use of products with biometrics and smart card reader technology. KSI quickly adapted, becoming FIPS-approved and engineering its products to meet rigorous standards established by GSA.
The company’s next goal was to become Trade Agreement Act (TAA) compliant, with the assembly of its products here in the U.S. In 2006, KSI embarked on a program to ensure procurement of components from only those countries adhering to U.S. government-approved labor practices and TAA. With product assembly transferred to the KSI Oakland headquarters, the company finally qualified for GSA schedule listing.
The assembly of KSI products within our own manufacturing plant has many advantages, including tax and financial incentives, the ability to do business with the government and its many agencies spread across the nation, improved product lead times, creation of local jobs, and enhanced quality control. In achieving TAA compliance, many of Mr. Schwartz’s aspirations came full circle and fell into place. Today, KSI is proud of its local product design, testing, assembly, and shipping — right here in our Oakland, California headquarters.
This 4th of July, KSI celebrates 10 years of TAA compliance and the fulfillment of objectives set forth by our own founding father, Robert A.D. Schwartz.