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Knowledge Bank Workplace Innovation

Best practices and other information about Workplace Innovation and Smart Working

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  • Author: Syntens MKB Krachtcentrale
  • Publication date: 3 February 2014
  • Date added: 3 February 2014

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Rating: BLW Kunststoffen (BLW plastics)

BLW Kunststoffen (BLW plastics)

2013 - 'BLW Kunststoffen'  (BLW plastics)  in Nuenen, the Netherlands provides both semi-finished and completely custom made plastic products. The company mainly supplies the machine-industry, but also to other industries and standbuilding. The operation capabilities include sawing, turning, milling, bending, gluing and polishing. These operations make it possible to deliver a ready- made product. BLW now has 24 employees.

The workplace innovation
A new director/owner has introduced a different style of management. He assumes the best of people and gives them confidence. He carries a biweekly ten minute conversation with every employee  ‘to get at the table everything  that is needed to continue working well and fine with each other’.
The employees are given budgets to implement changes and improvements.
Monthly knowledge, customers and solutions are shared with competitors. With customers all finances are openly shared.
The diversity in the workforce that has been reached is nurtured and developed by acting as a training company and thus providing more new intake and a balanced age structure.

Approach
In 2006 a new manager joined the company, who became co-owner and director in 2011: Arold Moonen. Shortly after his entrance Arold has asked and got the room to rejuvenate the company and also to let dominate the human touch again. As an example, he says : "Everyone has the front door key of the company. All can do the exit and turn off the light? They do at home, so why not here?" This director is enthusiastic about the company, the skilled craftsmanship and the craftsmen. He excels at giving personal attention to the people.

Result
In a few years the company is changed from a hierarchically structured, solid and committed company with a high average age to a company in which the human factor predominates and a diverse workforce is employed. The company exudes openness, transparency, attention and confidence. This has positive effects on turnover and absenteeism.

Reference
In 2013 BLW Kunststoffen is proclaimed by Syntens one of the ‘smartest companies’  in The Netherlands. The jury report is in the Annex.

Themes: Labour relations , Dynamic management , SME
Industry : High Tech, new materials
Source : Case