Roundtable Discussion and Tour with Sierra Pacific Industries: Workforce Development Pt 1

April 11, 2018 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ GMI minutes

At the February meeting, it was discussed that we would create a GMI Lunch and Learn roadshow hosted each month by various manufacturers in the region. Topics would be determined by group interest focused on the 4 categories of Workforce, Supply Chain, Continuous Improvement and Marketing.



At the April meeting, we welcomed 3 new manufacturers to the GMI roundtable: Voorwood, Captive Aire and Sof-tek. Our industry leaders Southern Aluminum Finishing and Sierra Pacific were also present. Sector support partners included Shasta College and the SMART resource center. Hope Seth, GMI Coordinator facilitated.


Roundtable Discussion:

Recruitment/Retention Challenges and Best Practices


Recruitment –This part of the discussion allowed manufacturing employers to identify their immediate talent needs regarding employee recruitment, and retention.


  • A general lack knowledge about available careers in manufacturing-both youth and adults
  • Finding local talent with specific skill sets i.e. CNC, Press Brake Operators
  • Hard to find experienced individuals
  • Hard to find talent who can pass a drug test, show up and work hard
  • Recruiting from outside the area has not been as effective
  • College interns hard to get to move here. Want to go to Bay area
  • Temp agencies not effective in pre-screening employees


        Best Practices

  • Have an online presence through job posting/recruitment websites (such as, college/technical school job boards (Chico State Capstone Project and Shasta College)
  • Referrals by current employees (incentives after 6 months employment)
  • Recruit within the area of Sacramento to Medford, Central Valley
  • Career fairs
  • SMART Resource Center
  • Temporary staffing companies to screen candidates (some mixed opinions)
  • Developing an internship program to potentially recruit interns after they graduate
  • Promote/identify career growth opportunities – Grow from within unless entry level or high skill
  • Set up specific tasks/tests in interview process to screen for soft skills and knowledge base
  • Hire multiple candidates for same job, in case one falls away.
  • Look for candidates who demonstrated leadership skills in high school/college such as clubs, athletics, organizations


       Potential Action Items (Big Ideas)

  • Connect more intentionally with high school CTE programs to identify students with interest for job shadow, workplace tours (Silicon Valley CTE program)
  • Sponsor a contest for students, give time, knowledge, resources to help
  • Identify rural areas with youth who have mechanical skills, work ethic and few jobs available
  • Educate youth about marijuana dangers to careers/workplace
  • Identify local students who are attending college program outside area and offer internships upon graduating.




  • Keeping younger talent in Redding
  • Inter-generational expectations/communication
  • Lack of motivation, career pathway vision
  • Underdeveloped leadership/management skills of production/team leads


      Best Practices

  • Evaluate and reward progress through promotions, wage increases, bonuses, certificates of appreciation, and other incentives
  • Provide cross-training to ensure exposure to other areas (Captive Aire critical process team)
  • Prioritize employee engagement and development. Let them help find solutions. Work together with them to achieve the goals, solutions.
  • Collaborative problem solving
  • Engage employees in workplace training
  • Improve the interview process with an additional layer of interviews
  • Provide job stability
  • Conduct training, recognizing achievement, and rewarding behavior


      Potential Action Items (Big Ideas)

  • Leadership training. Mentoring/Coaching program-help upcoming leaders,  young supervisors- on the job training. (Michelle mentioned Crucial Conversations as a potential resource)
  • Involve career planning and pathways for employees. They need to know your why and you need to know theirs.


Website Development

Jake Hinton with Cloud Potential previewed the GMI website ready to be be released within the next 2 weeks. The main features include a manufacturers directory, an industry forum, and resource directory. Several manufacturers requested an area for job board to be included. Jake mentioned that would be included in phase 2. There will also be content targeted to students such as internships and forum accessibility.


Conclusions/Follow Up Items

Following the roundtable, Hope will follow up with specific industry partners interested in taking action on the BIG IDEAS list for recruitment and retention. Industry partners will be invited to a strategy session to identify key activities the GMI may want to undertake.


Next Meeting

The next GMI meeting will take place on Tuesday 5/28 at Shasta College. DIscussion will be on industry engagement with education followed by a tour of Shasta College Advanced Manufacturing Program.