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Cross-Training and Communication are Among the Simple Steps for Creating a 'Worker-Centric' Warehouse

Professor Brian Edwards recommends practical strategies to make the warehouse more worker-centric and more competitive.

(Boonton, NJ, June 2, 2011) — If you want your DC to be known as a worker-friendly place, you don't need to dole out fat raises.

A few simple strategies can help boost employee morale and loyalty, says Bryan Edwards, an assistant professor of management at Oklahoma State University and one of the scholars leading the "worker-centric warehouse" effort.

In the June issue of Distribution Center Management, Edwards offers a number of strategies for nurturing a worker-centric atmosphere.

For instance, cross-training workers to perform a variety of jobs is good for your workers and for you. Job rotation improves workers' job satisfaction, and it creates a more flexible work force.

Communication between managers and workers also pays big dividends. Edwards points to the example of a DC manager who holds a monthly birthday party for all the employees whose birthdays fall in that month.

"It seems simple, but the employees really enjoyed that," Edwards says.

Additional techniques for becoming more worker-centric are in the June issue of Distribution Center Management.

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