When it comes to machine shops and other sorts of manufacturing companies many think they can get away without an HR professional. Perhaps it’s true, but there are so many ways you could benefit from one. It becomes much more apparent in larger shops but you might not realize all the ways an HR person can help you in a small shop as well. Here are five areas greatly improved by a good HR person.
Unexpected Benefits of HR in Machine Shops
Much of what people expect when they talk about HR is “soft skills” and “people work.” They picture things like solving arguments, listening to complaints and paperwork. These are certainly part of it, and very valuable aspects of human resources, but it is not all there is. There are a few forgotten effects of HR that are just as beneficial on a shop floor that you might not be considering.
Interest in being employed in the machining industry is not at the forefront of the job market today. It’s not always seen as the right modern job, or a secure job in this economy. There also tends to be seasonal ups and downs with much of the work in manufacturing and machining. These factors make it seem less appealing and make finding skilled talent harder.
With an experienced and charismatic HR person your company will have a higher chance of recruiting more valuable employees that fit within the work and culture of your company. This will save you time and money getting people in the door, as well as provide stability with decreased turnover. Targeted hiring will be much more successful than open ads in your local paper.
This is often the second highest expense in business, competing with raw materials and purchased goods. Workers today are looking for more than wages. Without a dedicated HR person you will likely struggle to find the balance of attractive benefits, wage rate, and variable pay possibiities to retain a highly productive and motivated workforce. Instead of having your shop supervisors spending their time debating pay raises let someone more experienced in compensation take that burden off them.
Benefits and Administration
The atmosphere of employee benefits has been in a state of change for several years. The health insurance environment has changed drastically. It’s no longer a matter of a General Manager simply picking a health plan. You need someone with knowledge and the right skills to work the marketplace and find the best plans for your people. While you may have some highly intelligent and skilled machinists at your company, this doesn’t mean that they are going to find the right insurance plan.
You have great shop floor supervisors, adjusters and all kinds of other skilled workers. But these people are often not interested in developing evaluation and rewards programs for employees. That doesn’t make them any less important. And while you can run a shop without them, you’ll find with the right incentive programs you have a happier and more productive workforce. A good HR professional can align the company goals and best practices with the proper incentives for improved work efficiency.
Training and Employee Development
One of the best ways to have a more skilled workforce is to provide training for the people you already have. Your employees know your business, your industry and your culture already. If you require new and additional skills, teach them to the people you already have.Your HR person can research various mentoring, training, study programs and hiring training consultants to find the perfect process for your people. This will make them happier, more engaged and better workers. Everyone wins.
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