With Veroot, National Dentex Labs Passed Its Validation in an Hour and Completed Its Annual Audit a Month Early
National Dentex Labs (NDX) owns and operates the largest network of dental laboratories in North America, providing tailored dental laboratory services to more than 40,000 clinicians each year and growing. Service-oriented local labs, aesthetic labs with deep experience and skills, simple domestic and offshore mail-order options, and the most advanced technology in digital dentistry and surgical planning combine to make NDX the go-to solutions provider for dental prosthetics, restorative products, appliances, and more.
The CTPAT program enables NDX to secure cargo and streamline its international logistics with shorter border wait times, fewer U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) examinations, and free and secure trade (FAST) lane access. When NDX received word of its first CTPAT validation from CBP in nearly five years, coinciding with an upcoming annual review, senior leadership knew they needed not just a software provider, but an outsourced partner to work alongside global logistics and fleet manager, Kent Runksmeier, in preparation for two pivotal and resource-intensive CTPAT audits at once.
NDX knew it had been selected for a validation but did not have any insight into when and how far out the validation would be scheduled. It had been four months since the original notice with no further correspondence from CBP. The validation process can be imposing and anxiety-inducing to an internal team, and with no known date to work toward, NDX was getting antsy.
Shortly after NDX vetted, selected, and began working on the seemingly more imminent CTPAT annual review with Veroot, CBP informed NDX that the validation was to take place in 10 days and encompass not only the company’s U.S. operations but also a foreign business partner’s factory. Typically, companies receive 30 days’ notice for validation scheduling.
NDX now had roughly two weeks to prepare for both its annual review and validation for two locations. “We had to move quickly,” Kent recalls—an understatement made tellingly calmly.
Veroot’s CTPAT software is designed to guide compliance for annual reviews and validations alike, while the Veroot consulting team works with clients to ensure they meet the necessary CTPAT requirements. Veroot gave NDX the tools, knowledge, and hands-on support to distribute Security Questionnaires, create Action Plans, fulfill the required management involvement, complete the CTPAT Management Review Minutes form, and provide employees with the mandatory annual CTPAT employee training, all electronically through the Veroot Vendor Management System.
From an initial CTPAT portal review with NDX, Veroot’s consultants determined the best course of action was to build a new Security Profile and refresh all CTPAT MSC documents to submit with the annual review for the best chance of first-submission approval. The Veroot team conducted intake on NDX’s standard operating procedures and provided a list of process documents for NDX to compile for review.
When the 10-day validation notice came in, Veroot and NDX shifted gears, yet stayed the course, both bringing in more team members for more hands on deck during the crucial home stretch. A one-hour Mock Validation helped NDX learn what to expect from the CBP Supply Chain Security Specialist (SCSS) and become comfortable with the Evidence of Implementation to present. Frequent videoconferences, direct phone lines, and constant email communication kept everything on track.
“The Veroot team did a great job of not only managing the project and making sure we had our deliverables, but also educating us for future annual reviews,” Kent said. “The platform itself gives us many capabilities and functionalities, without being overwhelming. The training resources and tracking are especially helpful for ongoing compliance.”
NDX’s validation with the SCSS lasted only an hour, compared to the grueling six hours that were scheduled. The SCSS applauded NDX’s commitment to the CTPAT program and preparation for the validation, giving the company a 100% score and Best Business Practice recognition.
The morning after the successful validation, NDX submitted its annual review more than a month early. The review was approved within a week.
“It was amazing how much we were able to accomplish and how well-equipped we are going forward,” Kent said. “The definition of a good partner in business is someone who makes you better, and Veroot is certainly that partner to us.”
“I strongly recommend Veroot for any company seeking or maintaining CTPAT certification. They are a fantastic partner with impressive software and a helpful team. Preparing for our validation and annual review with Veroot was the perfect balance of getting support for the immediate work in front of us and learning to ultimately use the software on our own. Veroot made an intense few weeks rewarding, reassuring, and, dare I say, fun.”