Beancounters to the Rescue? Office Staff Keep Honda Production Afloat in Ohio

Steph Willems
by Steph Willems
beancounters to the rescue office staff keep honda production afloat in ohio

This isn’t the first time we’ve learned of an “all hands on deck” situation taking place at a U.S. assembly plant. Recall this report from earlier this month, in which sources claimed managers and other white-collar employees hit the floor at General Motors truck plants in a bid to cover absent workers.

It was inevitable, given the reality facing companies hoping to maintain full production amid a viral pandemic. The latest report comes out of Marysville, Ohio — home to an enormous Honda assembly operation. Seems even accountants had to don hardhats.

This week, WOSU Radio reported that office workers at the Honda Marysville Auto Plant were called into action as autoworkers, helping to maintain output of Honda and Acura products as coronavirus cases rise in the state. The station obtained an email from a general manager at the plant, who called on “accounting, purchasing, and research and development” staff to take up temporary positions on the factory floor.

An employee anonymously told the station that it’s the first time they’d ever seen such an action taken, noting that the call-up occurred only after a voluntary effort failed.

“Due to strong customer demand for our products and the need to carefully manage production during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are facing some temporary staffing issues that require support from associates who do not typically work in production,” a Honda spokesperson told WOSU.

Workers infected with the illness, quarantined because of exposure to it, or just fearful of it, has made maintaining production a challenge. Currently, GM is seeking out-of-state conscripts for the third shift at its Wentzville, Missouri pickup plant. In Marysville, Honda didn’t have to look that far for help in building Honda Accords and CR-Vs, as well as Acura MDX, ILX, TLX, and RDX models.

[Image: Honda]

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  • Lou_BC Lou_BC on Aug 01, 2020

    Honda can get away with this since they aren't a union shop. I'm under a collective agreement and often end up doing stuff that isn't in my job description. It is a waste of money and my time but if my managers are too incompetent to get clerks or housekeepers to do the work at 1/3 my wage, who am I to complain. It comes in handy when bargaining a new collective agreement. We refuse to do any work outside our contract and it almost shuts the place down. It is great for public relations because the public sees that we shouldn't be pushing paper or doing housekeeping.

  • -Nate -Nate on Aug 01, 2020

    "require support from associates" #1 : they're _EMPLOYEES_ not 'associates . #2 : this is a good thing, the glove on the other had so now they can see what's what down in the trenches . 'Working out of class' is usually bullshit to avoid doing anything one doesn't like to do . -Nate

  • Probert There's something wrong with that chart. The 9 month numbers for Tesla, in the chart, are closer to Tesla's Q3 numbers. They delivered 343,830 cars in q3 and YoY it is a 40% increase. They sold 363,830 but deliveries were slowed at the end of the quarter - no cars in inventory. For the past 9 months the total sold is 929,910 . So very good performance considering a major shutdown for about a month in China (Covid, factory revamp). Not sure if the chart is also inaccurate for other makers.
  • ToolGuy "...overall length grew only fractionally, from 187.6” in 1994 to 198.7” in 1995."Something very wrong with that sentence. I believe you just overstated the length by 11 inches.
  • ToolGuy There is no level of markup on the Jeep Wrangler which would not be justified or would make it any less desirable [perfectly inelastic demand, i.e., 'I want one']. Source: My 21-year-old daughter.
  • ToolGuy Strong performance from Fiat.
  • Inside Looking Out GM is like America, it does the right thing only after trying everything else.  As General Motors goes, so goes America.