The Future of the Industrial Workforce with Dan Johnston

Future of Supply Chain Podcast, Episode 27

750 BILLION dollars.

That’s how much money is exchanged between employers and their workforce in the industrial, logistics, and manufacturing industries each year.

Yet, as a general rule, these industries regularly rank as the most dis-satisfied and frustrated workforces in the country. Additionally, employers are constantly searching for new ways to retain, re-train, or replace their workforce for a myriad of reasons. There has to be a better way of finding, educating, and incentivizing industrial workers to build a career in these incredibly important (and lucrative) areas.

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Dan Johnston came to this same conclusion while managing a manufacturing facility. Upon arrival in his new role, he was immediately faced with the massive problems that existed at the facility due in large part to outsourced workforce management (e.g. staffing firms), and the proverbially opaque windows into roles that left industrial workers with a fuzzy view of what the opportunities actually were within the company.

After doing further investigation, Dan realized that prospective workers had little to know understanding of what skills they needed in order to build a successful career within the company. Further, as Dan began to discuss his observation with industry CEOs it became abundantly clear that hiring and retention was their number one pain point.

Enter Workstep.

Dan and his team decided to open the walled gardens that staffing companies had created between the supply (industrial workers) and demand (companies that are hiring) within the industry and began to introduce transparency to the jobs available, skills needed for success, and roadmap to achieving those skills as an industrial worker. Additionally, they began tracking the types of employees that were excelling at their jobs within companies and created automated triggers that could identify the right characteristics, knowledge, ability, and aspiration required to create a successful long-term career in industrial jobs.

The result?

Workstep now provides industrial workers with a path to building a long-term career, and is opening the doors to the thousands of jobs that are available within the industrial marketplace. By providing coaching and ongoing education to workers, Workstep is able to teach workers the skills they need to have in an evolving marketplace; while also driving retention and longevity for the companies who utilize the platform.

In an industry that considers 60% retention “good” the upside of a product like Workstep is clear. While more subtle, the outcomes provided to both the employer and their employees are providing massive benefit to a large contingent of people.

By providing transparency in the form role description, salary, daily tasks, upward mobility, and culture; Workstep is able to direct prospective employees to the roles that truly fit their skillset and abilities. This is a win-win for the hiring companies as they continue their march toward the “holy grail” of worker retention.

You can hear the full interview on the Future of Supply Chain here. To learn more about Workstep, check out their website.