Process Expo - November 3, 2011 - (Page 8)

EDUCATION Sanitary mixer designs have come a long way After showing several slides of earlier mixer designs that don’t quite meet today’s sanitation standards, Kyle Sides, applications engineer and director of sales with Sharpe Mixers, Seattle, Wash., said, “We’ve come a long way since then.” During his Wednesday afternoon presentation at PROCESS EXPO on “Easy, Clean and Sanitary Design Options for Mixers and Agitators,” Sides described the various parts of mixers as well as the latest options that make them easier to clean. He pointed out that today’s motors are about 90 percent more efficient than they used to be, and he recommended that companies go with NEMA 4-rated washdown motors. In addition, Sides said today’s motors can be slowed down and not break down as had been a problem in the past. However, he recommended that if a company runs the motor at slow speeds for extended periods of time that they invest in inverter-duty motors. In addition, variable-frequency drives (VFDs) allow operators to have greater control of speeds for varying loads or products and are available with stainless steel finishes. While FDA-approved white paint is an option for these various parts of mixers, Sides recommended that food manufacturers choose stainless steel. The impeller is the most important Sides part of a mixer, he said, describing a new hydrofoil-style impeller that was designed with the help of Boeing engineers. This new style uses less horsepower. Hiring and retaining good employees pays off “Every business is a people business,” began David Bryant, president and CEO of the David Bryant Co. Inc. and moderator for a PROCESS EXPO session on how to hire and retain good employees. Given the current economic conditions, Bryant predicts companies will experience a shift from finding good people to keeping good people in the future. John Schwantes, director of plant member services for Johnsonville Sausage LLC, said that at his company, employees are referred to as “members,” supervisors are known as coaches and work groups are called teams. When it comes to running the business, everyone’s opinion counts. There is no hierarchy at the company...”the first one in the parking lot in the morning gets the best parking spot,” he chuckled in providing one example. “At Johnsonville, we ‘walk the talk’ and coach our members.” Johnsonville takes hiring new employees seriously and key members are involved in the process. The company recently revised its hiring process to include on-site teambased interviews and candidate presentations, among other things. Interviews are handled by key members a new hire would work with because they have a vested stake in hiring the best candidate. New hire orientations have also been enhanced and the company has created a new website advertising new professional and hourly positions currently available. The company has also created a new employment brochure. Johnsonville also has created new billboards erected along key highways that state: “Jobs.Johnsonville. com...Hiring Great People.” • Meat&Poultry Schwantes Once hired, a “buddy plan” is forged with an appropriate member to help new employees become assimilated. Johnsonville’s culture is key for retaining people. Once hired, Schwantes said Johnsonville requires “personal growth and superlative performance from each member.” 8 • PROCESS EXPO TODAY / Thursday, Nov. 3, 2011

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Process Expo - November 3, 2011

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