Horsehead Corporation is the leading recycler and manufacturer of zinc-based products in North America. The company opened its first green-field facility for recycling electric arc furnace dust in Barnwell, SC in 2010. Eric Stroom, Horsehead’s plant manager, says the seamless transition between the services of readySC™, Apprenticeship Carolina™ and Denmark Technical College (DTC) helped forge the company’s pathway to prosperity in South Carolina.
Initially, readySC worked with Horsehead to provide the customized recruiting and training solutions needed to begin successful production. According to Stroom, “readySC’s services played a significant role in Horsehead’s decision to locate in South Carolina, and it’s a decision we haven’t regretted. The readySC team did an outstanding job supporting the recruitment and training of our initial workforce. Our project manager provided precise and competent program management. Our curriculum specialist coordinated program development and logistics flawlessly. The team worked closely with our group to develop a spot-on curriculum and training vehicle that our staff effectively delivered. This program was an essential ingredient in providing our new employees with a basic understanding of Horsehead’s mission, expectations, technologies and processes on day one of employment. Our startup was a tremendous success, due in large part to the preparation of our workforce through readySC. It was a tremendous team effort!”
Apprenticeship Carolina helped the workforce continue to grow by guiding Horsehead through the registered apprenticeship process from initial information to full recognition in the National Registered Apprenticeship System. According to Stroom, “Apprenticeship Carolina has been an instrumental aspect for further education of people in our operation. Since we started up our operation, we’ve developed an apprenticeship program for our maintenance employees, to take them over the next three years and develop their skills and competencies and then also reward them with compensation associated with incremental steps of improvement.”
Training for the apprentices is provided on-site by DTC. Stroom says this is “a tremendous growth opportunity for our people and a great benefit to Horsehead Corporation to know and understand that we fully train and certify people in the tasks that they need to be doing. Competency is critical – from a safety, from an environmental standpoint, from customer satisfaction and operational results.”