Parker College of Business management students conduct research for Briggs & Stratton
Georgia Southern University’s student chapter of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) teamed up with the Statesboro location of manufacturing company Briggs & Stratton to help the company better understand why long-term employees choose to stay.
The executive board of SHRM worked in groups to conduct 22 stay interviews in mid-April. Much like exit interviews when people resign from a company, the stay interviews help Briggs & Stratton Human Resources Manager Amanda See (MGMT, ’97; MBA, ’01) to understand what has kept the longer-term employees on the job.
The students worked with See to complete the interviews, while SHRM co-advisors John Harris, Ph.D., assistant professor of management, and David Sikora, Ph.D., associate professor of management, helped work out the details and a timeline for executing and delivering results.
Interviewees were all in the technician classification, which requires more experience and has proven harder to fill in recent years. More than half of the employees in this area had been on the job for five or more years, with 32% having worked at Briggs for more than 10 years.
The findings of the interviews were overwhelmingly positive. The majority of those interviewed generally enjoy working at Briggs and would recommend the company to friends or family looking for jobs. Interviewees also seemed to have a desire for more training and communication between shifts and on their performance. Most of the concerns mentioned were areas that the managers are already working on solutions.
Students Evan Hartzog and Brandon Lee presented their findings to plant manager James Suchovsky and other Briggs & Stratton managers on May 16.
“The students impressed us with the project,” said Suchovsky. “The information collected and recommended will help us retain and better engage our personnel in the future. The students did a great job presenting their data, and we thank them for the support.”
Briggs has operated in the Bulloch County Gateway Industrial Park since 1995. In early 2018, Briggs headquarters in Wisconsin announced that V-Twin Vanguard engine production would relocate from Japan to the U.S. This relocation created new jobs in Statesboro and in the company’s Auburn, Alabama, factory.