Harley-Davidson: Union and and Management Partnerships Driving Manufacturing Excellence

This session looks at the essential role unions can play in launching and shaping continuous improvement initiatives and the benefits inherent to contributed ideas and strategies.

Harley-Davidson Motor Company, in conjunction with the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) and the United Steel Workers (USW), created a High Performance Work Organization (HPWO) that has proven effective for the past eleven years. The presentation describes a combined hourly and salaried leadership structure that utilizes scorecard-driven performance for natural work groups, negotiates a single labor agreement that does not delineate jurisdiction between IAMAW and USW work, and defines a distinct organizational decision making process.



In This Presentation You Will Learn

  • The Harley-Davidson story (in minute 0)

  • The Kansas City plant (in minute 6)

  • How the plant runs without supervisors (in minute 13)

  • The decision-making process (in minute 16)

  • 23 elements of shared decision-making (in minute 17)

  • Employee engagement and communication (in minute 30)

  • Natural work group operations in action (in minute 34)

  • How overtime is covered (in minute 57)

  • and more

About the Speakers


 

Mike Fisher, Production Plant Manager, Harley-Davidson Motor Company

Michael Fisher is currently a Product Plant Manager at the Harley-Davidson Kansas City Vehicle and Powertrain facility. He has over 14 years with the Motor Company working at different facilities throughout the company. He has served numerous roles including hourly labor positions, front line supervision, human resource generalist and area manager positions.

Fisher transferred to the Kansas City facility from the York facility in January 2008. He continues to share his work experience while gaining knowledge of the Kansas City Structure. He currently manages various process areas while working closely with all aspects of the HPWO process.


Al Hahn, USW Union President -- Local 760, Harley-Davidson Motor Company

Al Hahn is currently President of Local 760 of the United Steel Workers (USW) at the Harley-Davidson facility in Kansas City, Missouri. Haln was hired by Harley-Davidson on May 30th, 1989 at the Tomahawk facility in Wisconsin. He was one of four members appointed to work on the expansion project now known as the Kansas City facility. He played a key role in designing and implementing the joint labor-management High Performance Work Organization (HPWO) partnership in the Kansas City Harley-Davidson workplace and he played an intricate part in the development of the new employee training program.

Hahn served as Vice-President of the Local 760 for several years. In his various roles throughout his Harley career, he has mentored and led his fellow co-workers through the HPWO process & continues to support the HPWO goals. Over the past ten years, he has been invited to share his HPWO experiences with various outside organizations and corporations. Throughout his career, Hahn has established many business relationships, hourly and salary, which depend on his wealth of knowledge and ability in providing guidance and support. In 2008, Hahn was elected by the USW members as their full-time Union President.

Tony Wilson, IAM Union President -- Local Lodge #176, Harley-Davidson Motor Company

Tony Wilson is currently President of Local Lodge 176 of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM) at the Harley-Davidson facility in Kansas City, Missouri. He was hired by Harley-Davidson on March 1, 1997 as part of the first group of hires in this new manufacturing facility. This group played a key role in designing and implementing the joint labor-management High Performance Work Organization (HPWO) partnership in the Kansas City Harley-Davidson workplace.

In 2000 Wilson was elected by the IAM members in the Paint Department as their full-time Union Steward and Union Co-Leader. In his role as the Co-Lead, along with the salaried Process Lead in the Paint Department, represented all the employees while making joint decisions around the vital functions with management and the natural work groups (NWG's). In 2001 Wilson was elected President of IAM Local Lodge 176 and was re-elected to that position in 2005 and 2008. In this full-time position he now co-leads the entire Harley-Davidson facility in Kansas City. Wilson previously worked at the Kansas City International Airport while earning his Airframe and Powerplant Mechanics license.

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