Bicycle Built for Two… or 93, at Sheridan Company

As it’s becoming more and more necessary for organizations to institute wellness initiatives and encourage employees to lead healthier and more productive lives, I’ve written a number of stories on the topic. And throughout the research and interviews for those stories, I’ve heard of a number of unique wellness programs.

But, I’ve never seen one like this: EMC Precision of Sheridan is celebrating a cost-saving achievement by giving each of its 93 employees a bicycle on June 1. Employees will be recognized with a company-sponsored cook-out that afternoon. (The company’s headquarters in Elyria, Ohio will have a similar celebration with bicycles for those employees as well.)

Each quarter, EMC Precision sets a theme and cost-saving goal. The first quarter of 2012 was “Eliminate Waste,” with a goal of employees submitting $150,000 worth of approved cost savings. The company exceeded that goal by double and now saves $300,000.

The precision machining company has a theme for each quarter and most recently the themes have focused on lean manufacturing. The second quarter theme takes it a step further and ties together being lean with being healthy, so the bicycles will come in quite handy. Each employee was also given a pedometer to track steps each day and every employee who reaches 10,000 steps a day will be entered into a drawing to give away 20 iPads.

EMC’s Travis Watson explains that the themes inspire the company as a whole – something that is often a challenge as the company grows.

“It sets the tone for the quarter and gives all the employees a central focus. We have a common bond of a goal that we’re trying to achieve,” he says.

For the previous quarter, Watson notes that employees submitted a wide range of ideas for cost-cutting: buying cheaper materials to make parts run faster, cutting down on outside operation costs, saving money on paper and more. He called the results “unbelievable.”

The company has partnered with Bicycle Garage Indy to secure the bicycles. Watson adds that if any employee does not wish to participate and receive a bicycle, those bicycles will be donated to a local charity that partners with Bicycle Garage Indy.