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Arizona MEP Helps ChemResearch Launch 12-Month Training Program


ChemResearch Corporation, located in Phoenix, is a metal finisher for the aerospace, defense, medical, semiconductor/electronics, space, and heavy equipment industries. The company’s customers range from regional and national machine shops to OEMs such as Boeing, Honeywell, Rolls Royce, Space X, and many more.

The Challenge

The company has about 80 employees with an average tenure of 10 to 15 years. In this tight labor market, the company has been developing additional benefits to help retain employees, especially those in entry-level positions. “You have to engage them at the start of employment and continue to remind them, not only about the 401K benefit but about the entire benefits package, including medical and auxiliary plans” said Tony Bouie, ChemResearch’s HR Business Partner. “Training is part of this package. It’s an investment in our employees to help develop additional skills and advance their careers.” To this end, ChemResearch embarked on the development of a 12-month training program focused on building the skills and improving business processes.

Arizona MEP services and training material put us on a good trajectory to continue the training even after the grant money is exhausted. Next year, we’ll choose an area of concentration to get the most from the budget we have.

— Tony Bouie, HR Business Partner

MEP's Role

With Arizona MEP's help, ChemResearch applied for and was awarded a grant through the Incumbent Worker Training Program offered by Arizona at Work and the City of Phoenix. The grant provides financial assistance for training programs focused on developing the competitive skill set of existing employees. “Arizona MEP was a big help during the grant application process and helped us create a well-rounded training program that exceeded our expectations,” said Tony. Using Arizona MEP’s experts in lean manufacturing, organizational development, and business operations, ChemResearch was able to offer different training options to their employees.

The training program has paid huge dividends for the company. “The lean manufacturing training has produced some of the best results for us,” said Tony. “During the workshop, the team concentrated on one operational area, applying lean principles to reorganize, clean, document and streamline the processes. Now, when potential customers tour our facility, they remark that it’s one of the most well-organized facilities they have toured, which helps build confidence in ChemResearch.”

Training was also conducted to reinforce HR best practices and policies. Arizona MEP’s HR expert led a supervisor training class that provided a solid framework for effective communication, conflict resolution, employee evaluations, and legal compliance. “The supervisor training was beneficial for us,” Tony remarked. “After the training, I saw a difference in how managers were giving feedback to employees.

Created June 2, 2020, Updated October 4, 2023