The normal relationship between labor unions and management in companies can be a contentious one. Both sides try to get the most from the other with the least amount of compromise on their own part. However, that will no longer be the case at TitanX after Wednesday’s announcement of a new cultural direction.
TitanX announced a high performance partnership agreement between two two labor unions: United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America and International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers. The agreement, according to Matt Moore, TitanX president, and Norm Smith, IAM District 65 directing business representative, essentially entails a cooperation between laborers and management. Where most businesses work on a pyramid structure with the management telling the workers what to do, the operators on the floor in TitanX will also have a say in how things will run.
“It takes us from an organization that is just functioning and moves us to a high-performance work organization where you get union, management and labor all working together like a well-integrated machine,” Moore said.
According to Smith, he worked with hundreds of companies throughout the years, but TitanX marks the first time he recommended for this type of action to be implemented. Moore added the change came due to new management. According to Moore, between the factors of management ready to listen and the union ready to work together with the push of a financial crisis of 2008 and 2009, TitanX saw the old way of working would no longer be sufficient.
“Now there is a level playing field,” Smith said. “Now the operator on the floor has a say in what they do and how they do it.”
Although the agreement became official Wednesday, TitanX has already begun taking steps to implement it in the past few months. According to Shawn Henderson, production systems manager for TitanX, productivity and efficiency has already begun to increase.