By Sally Klingel, Ann M. Martin
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Extra info for A Fighting Chance: New Strategies to Save Jobs and Reduce Costs
2 million by cutting thirty-five jobs in the distribution center, one committee member said that the bid was just "another management blackmail tactic" to cut jobs. It was business as usual as far as the union was concerned: the union had not been consulted about how to improve the efficiency of the distribution center before the bid from Autocon was received. Harrison management believed, however, that by notifying the union and not invoking the contractual sixty-day countdown before actually outsourc- Hamson Radiator and the VA W 35 ing the work,* the union had indeed been asked to play a role in the decision to outsource.
At the same time, management provided information and the informal assistance of the general supervisor, a universally trusted figure in the distribution center. At the end of three weeks the team had a list of twentyfive ways to save costs. Workers have noted that some of these ideas had been submitted and rejected as formal suggestions in the past. Managers confirm that one of the significant ideas had been in the suggestion system but point out that new circumstances or technology often make a suggestion acceptable that was previously rejected.
In contrast, labor costs were 18 percent. The third proposal was to redesign a shipping container to hold more product, at a savings of $80,000. 5 million per year by the third year if an additional suggestion for a three-person salvage operation for dunnage materials was accepted. 2 million. Results The short-term positive results of the work of Hog's Helpers were evident almost immediately. The potential savings were presented to management in mid-October 1986. On October 30, management called a meeting in the distribution center cafeteria and, with no prior hint, announced its decision to keep the distribution center in-house.
A Fighting Chance: New Strategies to Save Jobs and Reduce Costs by Sally Klingel, Ann M. Martin