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Customer Success Story

A Gulf Coast petrochemical refining facility experienced significant deterioration in operational performance during late 2006. Reduced production capacities resulted in product shortages, missed customer deadlines, and revenue shortfalls undermining senior management & shareholder confidence in management capability.

Preliminary investigation revealed production outages were largely the result of human errors made by new stopemployees with short tenure and limited prior experience. Further, percentage of new employees had been steadily increasing due to unusually high turnover in technical staff ranks. Finally, planned introduction of new technologies would further complicate the manufacturing environment, demanding even greater levels of employee competency to recognize and adjust sophisticated production reactions.

Management determined that erosion in technical workforce capability resulted from an inferior employee value proposition in the highly competitive Gulf Coast labor market. While the facility excelled in recruiting and training new production workers, they consistently lost experienced staff to area competitors. In effect, the operation was functioning as a training and development arm for local competitors willing to pay more for "experienced" workers, a most unenviable talent management position.

The Solutiongreenlight

Implement a multi-dimensional talent capability development strategy increasing retention through attacking root causes of employee attrition:

  • Create and sustain a gratifying working environment that attracts and nourishes technical talent
  • Develop interaction patterns improving interpersonal relationships and how people treat each other
  • Provide leading edge operational support tools, equipment, training and information to get the job done
  • Provide talent development programs supporting professional and personal growth
  • Institute competitive, broad spectrum compensation strategies focusing on long-term retention

The Outcome

Refreshed talent management practices created an organization culture leveraging employee pride and ownership in a "gleaming" facility with great people:

  • 50% reduction in technical staff turnover within 6 months of launching new strategy
  • 60% return of defecting employees within 90 days of implementing new talent management policies


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