March 10, 2016


Employee and customer feedback prompted a “first” for the Parts Department recently.  Department management recognized that new Parts team members were not getting the training they needed quickly enough, so a team of key Parts members from seven different locations was put together and tasked with the creation of an onboarding plan – something the Parts Department has never had before.

The team is comprised of Mark Swesey (Spokane), Chelsea Oyler (Meridian), Todd Stoddard (Spokane), Houston Ostler (Pocatello), Sarah Williams (Twin Falls), Ken Ahearn (Missoula), Tim Capps (Twin Falls), Sean Miller (Meridian), Rhett Wall (Pasco), Steve Pugmire (Meridian), Jerad Childers (Pocatello), and Joe Manning (Spokane).

The team has already met twice for two days each time.  And although the team’s focus right now is the onboarding process, they anticipate putting together a comprehensive training and development plan for long-term employees as well.

The three main components of the onboarding plan are safety, job readiness, and strategy overview and alignment.  Both the onboarding and training plans will be divided into roles:  Supervisor/Manager, Parts Consultant, and Warehouse Associate.  Each role will have its own unique curriculum.

Dan Young, Vice President of Parts, commented, “I look at this as an opportunity for Parts employees to grow themselves by helping us move our teams forward.  It’ll be very similar to the way we manage our Safety Advocate teams today.”

Dan hopes that as a result of the new onboarding process and future training, both new and long-time Parts employees will feel more prepared and satisfied with their jobs, and customer satisfaction with Western States will continue to increase.

“We want to ensure that we’re putting people into roles they can be successful in,” Dan said.

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