Human Resources departments have a critical role in ensuring a company’s success. For Kansas-based HR departments, that task is made somewhat easier through workforce services provided by KansasWorks. This includes assistance recruiting and screening potential employees, providing quality-training programs, developing retention plans and much more.
One of the firms using these services is XLT Ovens. This Wichita-based business has been producing industrial conveyor ovens, most commonly found in pizza kitchens, since 2000, growing rapidly in 2015 and 2016. XLT Ovens prides itself on being committed to offering excellence in quality, cost, delivery and service. A key aspect of that growth was hiring and supporting the right people who now make up XLT Ovens, 150 employees.
Since being introduced to KansasWorks and the Workforce Alliance through the Wichita Chamber of Commerce in 2008, XLT Ovens HR manager, Kathy Jewett, has tapped services for applicant screenings, job fairs, on-the-job trainings and other workforce development efforts.
“They are an extra arm of the HR department because they screen candidates, you can post all your jobs for free, you can host job fairs at their location or they can host job fairs at your own location,” explains Jewett.
XLT Ovens has also worked with Aaron Plume of KansasWorks to focus on hiring veterans.
“XLT Ovens began offering all veterans an interview after they applied,” Plume says. “They also became involved with the Transitioning Service Member Program at McConnell Air Force Base presenting their company as a great place for employment after being released from active duty military.”
Being able to add talented veterans is a win-win for all parties. “I definitely feel that XLT Ovens benefits from the services KansasWorks provides,” Plume says. “Since these workforce center services are free to employers, it saves XLT Ovens money and time.”
“They are an extra arm of the HR department …”
Young, But Ready
XLT Ovens is one of the Kansas companies that looks to Youth Employment Program for finding job-ready candidates. This KansasWorks program teaches and tests youth on their skills before establishing potential matches among employers. The pre-work evaluation also ensures that candidates are sufficiently motivated and skilled. XLT Ovens human resource manager Kathy Jewett notes the guarantee of those two qualities provides tremendous assurance to employers. “I am a strong ambassador of workforce development and encourage any employer who is not using these services to do so,” Jewett says. “It is a great value proposition!”