Pioneer Metal Finishing Soars on Employees, Culture

Pioneer uses their own Pioneer TV Network, company newsletter, fundamentals activities and training to get new and current employees integrated into the company culture and expectations.


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When you walk in the door at a Pioneer Metal Finishing location for your first day on the job, be prepared to learn something about the company. Actually, you’ll learn a lot about what makes Pioneer and its employees tick.

“We have an extensive human resources and culture program,” says Scott Turner, vice president for business development at the Green Bay, Wisconsin, facility. “From the initial interview to the onboarding experience, we consider communication to be critical to our success.”

Pioneer uses numerous channels—including their own Pioneer TV Network, company newsletter, fundamentals activities and training—to get new and current employees integrated into the company culture and expectations.

“Through these activities, we invest in our teams to help achieve the highest performance,” Turner says. “We have created extensive training materials, both hands-on and through our suite of online training modules, all designed to provide our customers with highly engaged and capable associates to handle their finishing requirements.”

These initiatives earned Pioneer Metal Finishing the Best Human Resources and Training Practices honor in the Products Finishing Top Shops Benchmarking Survey this year. Pioneer has seven locations in the U.S. and one in Mexico, and the human resources and training practices are standard throughout.

Turner says workforce development is a continuous process and, through structured meetings and morning huddles, they look for every opportunity to recognize employee performance.

“We use peer-to-peer recognition and review; employee recognition through our management report-out processes; and annual awards for high performers,” he says. “Development comes in many forms, and we have opportunities for project work at all levels. Continuous improvement activities such as Kaizen allow small teams to work together solving operational issues, and also provide us opportunities to identify and develop new talent.”

Pioneer has a passion for identifying and finding development opportunities for team members, with a “promote from within” philosophy.

“We believe that hiring the right people improves the culture within Pioneer,” Turner says.

Pioneer has more than 1,100 people working across their organization, and their facilities are large compared to many others.

“Large customers prefer to deal with similar companies, so we annually invest significant amounts in our operations,” Turner says. “This year, we will invest more than $8 million in upgrades and new capacity in our existing operations, not including new facilities.”

Pioneer is also embarking on a journey to adopt more automation in their operations. They have invested in robotic and other types of automation systems that allow their teams to be more productive, and will help reduce ergonomic injury for team members and the related costs, while improving product quality for customers.

“Being named a Top Shop is a recognition of the work and effort by our teams to provide exceptional metal finishing services to our customers,” Turner says. “The investments we make in our company—both operational and cultural—as well as the time we commit to training and development are a major emphasis for Pioneer. The Top Shop award is a recognition that this work is effective.”


About Pioneer Metal Finishing

Pioneer Metal Finishing
Green Bay, Wisconsin
Robert Pyle, President