| 9:35 PM EST

Honda Office Workers Hit the Line in Ohio

Staffers requested to help with production work in Ohio
#facilities #Honda


Facebook Share Icon LinkedIn Share Icon Twitter Share Icon Share by EMail icon Print Icon

Honda is using some of its accounting, quality and purchasing staffers to fill in on the plant floor because of a shortage of hourly workers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

It all began several weeks ago, radio station WOSU reports. The Columbus-based broadcaster cites an internal memo distributed last week “requesting additional support” from salaried staffers to maintain high production rates.

Rebuilding Inventories

Honda’s sales in the U.S. were down by about one-quarter through the first half of the year. But the company’s plants in North America also were shuttered between March and May by the health crisis.

Since production resumed on May 11, Honda has been scrambling to maintain normal inventories. The carmaker is running daily overtime and frequent Saturday shifts across its facilities in the region.

The memo to salaried employees came from Mark Willoughby, who heads purchasing for Honda of America Manufacturing. He says the staffing crunch might abate “sometime in August.”

Workers Still Sidelined

Willoughby notes that Honda has a significant proportion of workers on leave because some have the virus, others are quarantined because have tested positive or were exposed to others who did, and some are out because of surgeries that had been delayed by the pandemic.

Trim line at Honda’s plant in Marysville, Ohio
(Image: Honda)

Normally, Honda turns to outside staffing agencies when it’s short on assembly line personnel. The company tells Automotive News its nonunion facilities also have tapped salaried employees to help out in the past.

The memo notes that finding temporary workers has been especially difficult throughout the auto industry during the pandemic, in part because of the federal government emergency unemployment plan that pays furloughed personnel $600 per week.

That program is set to expire today, which would at least expand the pool of available temporary workers.


  • Cadillac Creates More Luxury: the XT5

    Paul Spadafora, chief engineer, Cadillac XT5, had, in his estimation, a fantastic opportunity as he and his team set about to develop Cadillac’s all-new midsize crossover vehicle for a number of reasons, one of which is the simple fact that this is one of the hottest segments going in the auto industry, so if you want to be in the game, you have to play hard against the likes of the Audi Q5 and the Mercedes GLE-Class.

  • Welding Mixed Materials, Multiple Ways

    As OEMs and suppliers seek lightweight solutions to meet higher fuel economy standards through multi-material structures, conventional welding techniques are beginning to give way to new solid-state joining methods better suited for creating strong bonds between dissimilar metals.

  • Design to Reality: the Z4 Roadster

    Imagine having an idea that is transformed without a whole lot of modification into a series of cars rolling off the assembly line. BMW's Anders Warming is one of the few who have had that experience.