Summit Precision Production Leads Swine Farm Labor Study
Labor management is one of the most challenging factors in profitable swine production. But new tools used to assess employees within their working environment provide valuable insights into optimizing worker satisfaction and performance – factors that directly and positively impact farm performance.
A study led by Summit Precision Production (SPP) engaged slat-level swine employees by using Cloverleaf and PXT assessment tools. Swine farms from companies representing five percent of the nation’s U.S. sow production base participated in the initial study engaging farrowing and breeding workers, supervisors and farm managers.
Results showed managers and others some surprising results.
More than age, more than experience, even more than pay, swine workers performance was driven by the value of job satisfaction in their roles. That was followed closely by doing meaningful work. The amount of pay was listed as less important.
What surprised some managers when factoring in the human element – a farm was more likely to have better pigs weaned per mated female per year output (PW/MF/Y) when considering employee satisfaction – over age, experience or even pay. In this study, the measurement of successful employees was tied specifically to each farm’s PW/MF/Y.
“From a supervisor’s standpoint you would expect experience to play a large role in supervisor satisfaction, yet we found that job satisfaction and culture was most impactful to performance”, Jon Hoek CEO of SPP said.
Worker satisfaction was also shown to drive whether a supervisor would hire that person again.
Boehringer Ingelheim, Provimi, Central Life Sciences, National Pork Board, Pig Easy, Farm Credit of Mid America, Arm and Hammer, Swine Tech, and PIC also provided support for this study.
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