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Oregon Workforce Partnership

KEITH® Manufacturing Company

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Workforce Challenge

KEITH® Manufacturing Company, in Madras, OR, has five international locations and over 250 patents, including the WALKING FLOOR®. KEITH® is challenged to stay competitive in the global market while headquartered in a small rural town. The company needed to update its manufacturing processes to increase efficiencies and productivity.

“One of our core competencies is innovation, and training goes hand in hand with innovation,” stated Lindsay Foster-Drago, Value Stream Group Lead. However, KEITH® needed help with the costs of a comprehensive training program.

Workforce Solution

The company turned to the local workforce system for help. It received an Employer Workforce Training Fund matching grant to implement lean manufacturing, leadership and other trainings. As a result of training, KEITH® reorganized its plant and the way that teams work together in order to continuously improve efficiency and reduce waste in the manufacturing process.

Outcomes & Benefits

The culture of the company has changed as a result of the training program, and morale has improved. The Employer Workforce Training Fund has allowed KEITH® to continue to compete globally, even with the limited workforce available in its small rural headquarters. True to its philosophy of growing its own and promoting from within, KEITH® has a 1% turnover rate, which Foster-Drago attributes to the training program.

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