Despite Pandemic-Related Challenges, JV Manufacturing has Largest Workforce in History

2020 was a challenging year, with unemployment at an all-time high and many businesses around the world closing their doors. However, some manufacturers in Southwestern PA have found ways to overcome these challenges.

Despite all the pandemic-related challenges, JV Manufacturing, a carbide and dies manufacturer in Natrona Heights, PA, has thrived over the past year. Today, the employees at JV Manufacturing are feeling excited about the future, after accomplishing quite a lot in 2020. Since February 2020, the manufacturing organization has made 33 new hires, bringing their employee count to 127 – the largest workforce they’ve had in history.

The organization was fortunate enough to not resort to any layoffs or furloughs throughout the on-going pandemic. During this time, JV has continually invested in workforce development and training opportunities for employees, keeping them engaged. In 2020, the company not only invested in upskilling their current workforce with new training opportunities but was also able to invest $1M into new equipment, equipment updates, and technology. Additionally, JV Manufacturing recently implemented an apprenticeship program, enrolling 5 of their employees over the next 18 months.

JV Manufacturing recognized the difficult time individuals and families have been going through and made efforts to help displaced workers throughout the pandemic, including spouses of current employees. The organization also provided enrichment opportunities for employee families and JV partners, ranging from fun and educational activities for children to providing helpful information surrounding mental health.

Longtime employee, Ron Hess, said: “Working at JV is like working for family. In my time here I’ve never seen a layoff and have never missed one of my kids’ games no matter what shift I was on. It’s a two-way street and when they’ve needed me, I’ve always shown up no matter what. It’s a place where you can start in your twenties, buy a house, put food on the table, and live a good life never having to worry about being out of a job. Ever.”

In addition to their healthy workforce, JV Manufacturing sales were driven 15% by new customers to the organization. At the beginning of the pandemic, JV Manufacturing quickly refocused their efforts into supplying tooling to essential customers, as well as helping these customers find solutions to problems they have faced in relation to the pandemic.

Employees at JV Manufacturing are looking forward to the months ahead, as pandemic restrictions slowly begin to lift.