“Making continuous improvement a part of every day and every job.” This is one of the tenets of UITP’s Quality Policy, which defines our commitment to be at our best – not only for our customers but also for ourselves. The creation of a culture that embraces innovative thinking and problem-solving has been the key to managing the immense period of growth that United has experienced over the course of the past decade.
January is traditionally a time where individuals set their intentions for self-betterment, but here at United, that is something we strive for 12 months a year. One area of improvement we are particularly excited about is a new mentorship program that launched in December 2018. This initiative pairs new employees with experienced team members to learn the ins and outs of our custom manufacturing process. While it is still in the early stages of implementation, the results have been impressive thus far. Trainees have reached levels of proficiency at a quicker rate, acclimating to machinery and procedures sooner than new employees have in years past. Much of the credit goes to our team of mentors and supervisors who have collaborated to design a detailed program based on their own training experience.
Improvement begins with an employee feeling enough confidence to voice an idea, and is followed by the support and resources to see it through. Our supervisory team recognized a need for a better method of training the number of employees joining the ranks. This system would not only allow them to ensure the new hires receive the amount of attention and instruction necessary to acclimate to their roles, but also give the supervisors the capacity to complete their own work. They shared this feedback with members of our management team, and the mentor program was born. Two employees were identified as individuals with the experience and characteristics that would make them successful in training roles. The newly designated “mentors” were then tasked with developing a curriculum they would use in the training of their mentees. Rising to the challenge, the mentors broke down the skills to the most basic level, from creating patterns for new technicians to practice their stitching, to troubleshooting common mistakes made in the operation of equipment.
We are eager to see this program shape our workforce in the years to come. We believe that collaboration, innovation, and ingenuity will continue to be mainstays in our company culture.