Facilities Services Team Meetings Provide Valuable Insight

In its first year, a Facilities Services employee involvement program has been a valuable resource.

In the fall of 2013, Facilities Operations Director Bob Caudill created Process Improvement Team (PIT) crews for the division’s Building Services group.

The idea behind the creation of PIT crews was twofold—to give employees a platform to speak their minds about day-to-day operations and to gain vital insights from team members.

Employees are randomly selected and assigned to a PIT crew based on their work shift. Each crew meets three times before its members rotate out and are replaced with other co-workers. A cross section of the Building Services group is represented during the meetings, with all three shifts meeting during their regular work hours.

Caudill says the meetings have helped him meet with every person in the 200-plus-member Building Services staff.

All comments, suggestions, and concerns brought to the meetings remain anonymous.

“There is honesty during these meetings,” Caudill said. “Since all discussions are confidential, the employees bring issues and concerns to us, along with their ideas for solutions to these issues.”

Managers have addressed several issues as a result of these meetings, including the rotation of new cleaning equipment to more buildings on campus and the testing of new products.

“These meetings are about improving conditions,” said Building Services Assistant Director Gordon Nelson. “It is our responsibility that they have the proper equipment to get the job done.”

Another change coming about as a result of the meetings is a plan that allows foremen to spend more time talking to new and veteran employees about what works and what doesn’t.

“The people who are experienced and in the field should be the ones who are evaluating the products we use,” Caudill said. “There are a lot of smart and experienced people working for us.”

CONTACT:

Brooke Krempa (865-974-7782, bsteve14@utk.edu)