The Monthly e-Newsletter for Catawba County's Existing Industries

After a summer hiatus, we are proud to announce the return of
Industry Pulse, the monthly e-newsletter for Catawba County's existing industries.
Good news you may have missed in recent months:
As well as an interesting read:
Thank you for your time this month and please do not hesitate to contact me ( ; 828-244-3085) or the EDC if we can assist you or your business.
"People familiar with manufacturing are twice as likely to pursue a career in manufacturing."
2015 Manufacturing Institute report
From October 3-7, CVCC is hosting CREATE YOUR FUTURE WEEK, a week-long series of events designed to celebrate manufacturing's contributions to the Catawba Valley and the wide variety of exciting career opportunities available within manufacturing.

Held in conjunction with National Manufacturing Day (Friday, 10/7), this week represents a tremendous opportunity for your company to dispel incorrect myths about manufacturing and instead tell your story and build recognition that inspires the next generation of manufacturers. 
  • Tuesday, 10/4 - Manufacturing Plant Tours: Lee Industries, Sarstedt, ZF Chassis and Vanguard Furniture have stepped up and are hosting plant tours for students and parents from 6:00-8:00PM.  Thanks to those companies for jumping on board!
  • Wednesday, 10/5 - Manufacturing Showcase:
    The school systems (students & parents) should be blanketed with information about attending this interactive "fair" from 6:00-8:00PM.  Manufacturers are invited to participate and show students and their parents the many opportunities that exist within your respective companies.  At the same time, CVCC departments will be on hand providing attendees with the relevant education pathway someone can take to reach that job at your company.   
We truly need your participation and support to make this week a success.  To find out more and participate, please contact Kimberly Propst at CVCC (; 828-327-7000 x.4501).
Dept. of Labor Overtime Rule      
The U.S. Department of Labor ("DOL") has released a much anticipated Final Rule updating its regulation that defines the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA") overtime exemptions for Executive, Administrative, Professional, and Highly Compensated Employees. In the manufacturing industry alone, the Final Rule is expected to impact 1.1 million workers.
DOL last updated the Executive, Administrative, and Professional ("EAP") exemption salary levels in 2004. The Final Rule, which goes into effect Dec. 1, 2016-Dec. 31, 2019, increases the minimum salary level for the EAP exemptions from $23,660.00 annually ($455.00 per week) to $47,476.00 ($913.00 per week). The Highly Compensated Employee ("HCE") exemption salary threshold will also increase from $100,000.00 annually to $134,004.00.
In the manufacturing context, the most likely employees to be affected are entry-level production managers and administrative employees such as purchasing agents.   The Final Rule will not likely require employers to reevaluate whether current non-management employees in production should be classified as exempt because they would not generally satisfy the Duties Tests.
Employers will have to consider whether to continue to treat affected employees as exempt and raise their salary to the new mandatory minimum, or to allow the employee to become eligible for overtime pay.  In preparation of the changes, employers should consider a number of legal and practical strategies in implementing the new regulation.

Some of these strategies, as well as a number of other essential workplace updates for executive leaders, will be highlighted at a free seminar by Solucion LLC and Fisher Phillips Law Firm on Friday, 9/16 from 9:30AM-1:30PM (lunch included) at the Catawba County Chamber.

Please RSVP directly to Brian Simpson with Solucion LLC.

Vol. 8, Issue 3 - 

September 2016   
In This Issue
Create Your Future Week
Hiring ROI Calculator
 Cost-to-Hire ROI Calculator

CREATE YOUR FUTURE WEEK is a perfect segue for this next article.
Finding quality workers and training workers takes time and money.  Now consider what happens if you can't fill a position-or if a new hire doesn't meet your expectations or doesn't last. Not only do you have to start the recruiting process again, but in the meantime you will likely pay overtime, increase use of staffing agencies, or simply reduce production until you are back to full strength.
Has your company ever examined the costs per hire? It can be extremely substantial.
Conversely, what does your company actively do to reduce those costs?
I recently came across this easy-to-use Return on Investment calculator from the Manufacturing Institute that looks directly at the hiring costs to your operation - everything from the cost of internal meetings needed to select new employees to the costs associated with a supervisor training a new hire.
The calculator is a great thought experiment and may spark some internal dialogue at your company because it also provides HR solutions proven to reduce turnover, to reduce on-the-job training time, etc. (*Hint - Partnering with a community college to build a pipeline of skilled workers has been shown to cut down significantly on recruiting expenses).
If you would like to talk further about possible ways the EDC and its many partners could assist you in your efforts to lower your cost per hire, please let me know.
Thank you for your time and interest,
Nathan Huret
Director, Existing Industry Services 
Office - (828) 267-1564          Cell - (828) 244-3085

Catawba County Economic Development Corporation | 1960-B 13th Avenue Drive SE | Hickory | NC | 28602