Building a Better Work Environment for the Manufacturing Industry: Insights from Gilmore

Building a Better Work Environment for the Manufacturing Industry: Insights from Gilmore

Posted: August 30, 2023

With numerous operational functions, quality controls, and safety aspects to control simultaneously, the manufacturing environment is highly complex. The current skills shortage in the manufacturing industry only adds pressure to an already demanding setting. That’s why the pursuit of a better work environment is necessary not only to improve efficiency, productivity, and safety, but also to draw and retain top talent.

Gilmore, a leader in providing critical flow control solutions, continues to set the bar when it comes to working towards manufacturing excellence. From choosing the right software to streamlining layouts and providing ongoing training, let’s explore how Gilmore continues to improve its work environment for growth and innovation.

manufacturing industry teamwork work environment
Photographer: hugo_34 | Source: Shutterstock

Benefits of Building a Better Work Environment in the Manufacturing Industry

A strong company culture and good work environment are not necessarily a magic solution to the hiring, retention, HR, and productivity challenges in the manufacturing industry. However, when leaders are intentional about improving the work culture and environment, they make significant headway. Let’s look at the benefits of investing in a better working environment for your manufacturing operation.

1. Increased Productivity

When employees feel accepted and supported in their workplace, they’re more likely to feel motivated and engaged in their work. This leads to higher levels of productivity and efficiency.

Additionally, a positive work environment helps reduce stress and burnout, allowing employees to focus and perform at their best. It can also foster better collaboration and teamwork, as employees are more likely to communicate and share ideas openly in a supportive environment.

2. Improved Quality

When employees are in an optimistic and affirmative environment, they take pride in their work and strive for excellence. This can result in higher quality outputs, whether it's the products they create or the services they provide. A supportive work environment also encourages innovation and creativity, since team members feel more comfortable taking risks and thinking outside the box.

3. Increased Employee Satisfaction

A positive work environment forms the basis of employee satisfaction. When employees feel valued, respected, and supported, they are more likely to enjoy their work and feel satisfied with their job.

4. Reduced Costs

Your manufacturing staff are the ones using technical processes daily. Therefore, they may have valuable insights into improving processes, which can help reduce waste and expenses. Maintaining effective communication and appreciation for their input can help drive efficiency and reduce costs.

5. Decreased Delivery Times

A supportive work environment inspires innovation and collaboration, allowing for better coordination and streamlined processes. Additionally, when employees feel motivated and satisfied with their work, they are more likely to go the extra mile. This can lead to improved customer satisfaction and loyalty.

6. Reduced Employee Turnover Rates

Employee turnover is costly and time-consuming. For employees to gain the necessary technical experience to excel can take months—if not years—of on-the-job training. With the current skills shortage in the manufacturing industry, the last thing anyone wants is to lose valuable staff.

Employees who feel appreciated and safe and actively participate in building value for the company gain a sense of belonging and accomplishment. Feeling that the company is just as invested in their growth as they are gives employees more reason to stick around.

7. Top Talent

A positive work environment is more likely to attract highly skilled and motivated individuals. When word gets out that your company prioritizes a supportive culture, employee well-being, and growth, it becomes an attractive place to work.

Creating a Better Working Environment the Gilmore Way

Gilmore is a leading example of creating a better environment for our workforce. At the heart of everything we do, our FRESH values guide our decisions and behavior. They influence the way we work with each other and serve our clients by building a collaborative, inclusive, and dedicated environment that encourages innovation and transparency.

Let’s take a look at some of the key strategies Gilmore applies to create a work environment that fosters support, teamwork, and shared wins.

how to build a better work environment ini the manufacturing industry
Photographer: Blue Planet Studio | Source: Shutterstock

1. Cultivate Openness and Transparency

Transparency in the workplace translates to trust and respect. To cultivate openness and transparency, Gilmore places a strong emphasis on engaging employees at every level of the organization. By offering employees an opportunity to contribute to the company’s direction and be involved in decision-making processes, we foster a sense of commitment and ownership.

Communication is key to engaging employees; Gilmore drives effective and consistent communication through regular team huddles, meetings, and newsletters. These channels facilitate meaningful discussions about company updates, challenges, and goals, creating a culture where everyone feels heard and valued.

At Gilmore, we also prioritize employee support. Employees who perceive that their company is invested in their development and future success are more likely to contribute their best efforts. With an ongoing skills shortage in the manufacturing industry, we take pride in offering employees continued training programs to grow in their careers and remain competitive, be it via skills workshops, professional development opportunities, or mentorship initiatives.

Building confidence is also key to creating an open and transparent work environment. The most effective way to do this is to acknowledge employee contributions and ensure workers feel appreciated for their contributions. While Gilmore celebrates employee achievements, we also encourage employees to take ownership of their work and take calculated risks. When employees feel that their leaders trust in their ability to contribute to the business, they are more driven to live up to these positive expectations as valuable team players.

2. Establish a Judgment-Free Idea-Sharing Culture

The advantage of a diverse team is that you get input from different perspectives. Drawing on the varying strengths of different individuals can give you a competitive edge; this is, however, only possible in a work environment that has a judgment-free idea-sharing culture.

To that end, Gilmore helps employees overcome any apprehension or fear of sharing their ideas by conducting frequent workshops that focus on the value of idea generation. The training sessions educate employees about the importance of embracing experimentation and learning from failure. They provide employees with knowledge and tools to navigate the process, allowing team members to contribute confidently.

To help employees broaden their perspectives, gain new insights, and foster innovation in their own teams, Gilmore also encourages cross-functional collaboration. This means that employees have the opportunity to work on projects outside their area of expertise—offering diverse experiences. This exposure also cultivates a culture of continuous learning and growth.

Of course, employees will only share ideas if they are received with openness. That’s why we emphasize the value of listening to each other in a judgment-free manner. Gilmore encourages feedback and promotes two-way communication, fostering an environment where employees can ask questions to seek clarification and offer suggestions. By receiving thoughts and opinions respectfully with constructive criticism, leaders reinforce that employee contributions are important.

3. Encourage Collaboration Across Departments

Team collaboration drives knowledge sharing and leads to better problem-solving. It promotes a healthy work culture, improves engagement, and contributes to employee happiness.

Considering the highly technical nature of the manufacturing industry and especially flow control solutions, Gilmore uses visual aids to improve the understanding and communication of complex ideas. Heavy usage of infographics, charts, and diagrams simplifies concepts and improves information retention.

Gilmore strives to maintain consistency and clarity in all its communication, both across the organization as a whole and within various departments, avoiding jargon whenever possible to minimize misunderstanding. By focusing on key information and avoiding unnecessary ambiguity, we promote shared understanding—which enhances workflows and efficiency.

4. Lead From the Top Down

While we seek every employee’s input, we also believe leaders are key to embodying expectations. Leaders at Gilmore understand their responsibility as role models; the only way to create a work environment of integrity, accountability, and trust is for leaders to exhibit these qualities towards staff and offer guidance as respectful mentors.

Gilmore runs manager and leader training courses to equip senior team members with mentoring skills such as emotional intelligence, communication, feedback, and goal setting.

Gilmore’s leaders believe in being catalysts that help employees to reach their full potential. By recognizing employee strengths, delegating responsibilities appropriately, and providing support, they encourage employees to take initiative and excel in their own roles.

Photographer: industryviews | Source: Shutterstock

5. Offer Positivity and Rewards

In our attempts to foster a culture of appreciation, Gilmore recognizes employees through verbal praise, public rewards, and written acknowledgments. Gilmore celebrates individual and team achievements quarterly and annually to recognize top performers in various categories.

6. Have the Right Technology in Place

Part of building a better work environment—especially in the highly complex manufacturing industry—is simplifying and streamlining processes. But to do so, having the right technology on hand is critical.

Gilmore aims to stay on-trend with digital transformation across its business practices, prioritizing investing in the newest software platforms and technologies that align with business needs. Whether we’re implementing advanced manufacturing systems, adopting automation solutions, or leveraging artificial intelligence, we at Gilmore continually evaluate emerging technologies to identify opportunities for improvement.

Gilmore Drives Excellence and Innovation in the Manufacturing Industry

The transformative potential of building a better work environment is immense. A positive work environment fosters collaboration, creativity, and innovation; employees feel valued and supported, which leads to higher motivation and engagement. By investing in creating a positive and inclusive workplace culture, businesses can unlock the full potential of their workforce and achieve long-term success.

Gilmore’s dedicated, inclusive, collaborative, and dynamic work environment model continues to drive our team to success. In addition to apprenticeship, mentorship, and skills training, we foster a culture of collaboration, innovation, and transparency from the top down—and our team looks forward to collaborating with you as well. Get in touch to find out how Gilmore can improve uptime and reduce operational costs for your energy operation.

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