Rational optimization. How Labor Dynasties Help Improve Labor Productivity

Promomed 22 December 2021

The national project for increasing labor productivity has summed up its first results. By 2021, the economic effect in the companies participating in the national project has already doubled the budgetary costs for its implementation. Lenta.ru tells about what they managed to accomplish in the first three years and what the employees themselves think of the project using the example of the Artyushins' labor dynasty working at the Biokhimik plant in Saransk.

Is it good when spouses or parents with their children work in the same company? Opinions often differ. In Western companies this is not welcome, and there are many precedents when, after an office romance ended with a wedding, one of the newlyweds had to leave the team. But if we talk about industrial production, then the presence of family labor dynasties, on the contrary, is an indicator of the stability of the company's operation. This is a great responsibility not only for oneself, but also for relatives and friends, and also professionalism and the opportunity to share knowledge and skills. Such people are more united and loyal to the company, which is especially valuable when the company faces new challenges requiring new approaches for their solution.

Common values

One of the enterprises where the continuity of generations is of great importance is the Biokhimik plant in Saransk city, part of the Promomed Group. Meet the Artyushins family. The head of the family, Alexander Nikolaevich Artyushin, works as a chief mechanic at a pharmaceutical enterprise, his wife Lyubov Pavlovna Artyushina is the supervisor of the bottling and packaging area of workshop No. 9 and their daughter Tatyana Aleksandrovna is the deputy head of workshop No. 3 for technological processes. A very kind and positive family, whose total work experience at Biokhimik is about 60 years.

At the end of 2018, Biokhimik JSC became a member of the Labor Productivity national project initiated by the Ministry of Economic Development. The project’s goal is to achieve the growth rate of labor productivity at medium and large enterprises of the basic non-resource sectors of the economy at least 5 percent per year by 2024.

«If we compare how the plant worked in the late 1990s and today, we will see a great difference,» says Alexander Artyushin. «The new owners (Promomed Group acquired a controlling stake in Biokhimik in 2015 – comment by Lenta.ru) replaced outdated equipment, built new workshops, launched new production facilities. Salaries also went up. And it was interesting for us to work with a new project, to understand how to improve our work: to save time, raw materials, to optimize the working day.»

«Since March last year, I have been working at a new area for the production of pharmaceutical substances. The old one was closed, and we were transferred to working on new equipment,» says Lyubov Artyushina. «Everything is new here; we are getting acquainted and learn. Some of the plant's employees were sent for retraining as part of this national project, taught how to work carefully. Now they are teaching us.»

The daughter of Alexander and Lyubov, Tatyana is constantly developing and gaining new knowledge necessary for working at a modern pharmaceutical enterprise. At the Mordovia State University, she is undergoing a retraining program in the «Chemical technology of synthetic biologically active substances». She is also studying at the Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration under the President of Russia. In a year, Tatiana will receive an MBA degree. This new knowledge allows the young woman to move up the career ladder at the plant step by step.

The workshop where Tatyana works is involved in the implementation of the national project. «We were assessing the existing infrastructure of the workshop and the current situation, identified all problem areas, then discussed with the management, came to common thoughts,» she says. «The improvement process is continuous, and we work on this daily, hourly, from shift to shift. As a result, the productivity at our site has doubled.» Lyubov Pavlovna adds: «There was a lot of manual labor in the old area, but here everything is computerized, the equipment is new. It has become much more interesting to work.»

Family story

Alexander and Lyubov Artyushins know each other from school, they studied in the same class, but got married a few years after graduation, when fate brought them together again at the Tsentrolit foundry in Saransk.

The head of the family began his career in 1978 at the Saransk instrument-making plant. «In my life everything was like in lives of many people: I graduated from school, enlisted in the army, then I was call up for military service, after leaving the army I entered a technical school, then got a job at the plant,» says Alexander Nikolaevich, who worked in different organizations before his employment at Biokhimik, including the Orbita electrotechnical plant, Tsentrolit foundry, and NIITFA (Research Institute of Technical Physics and Automation). In 1994, Artyushin got a job at Biokhimik.

«At that time, it was a rare place with a stable salary,» says Alexander. At first he worked as a turner-borer, and after graduation of the Ogarev Mordovia State University where he studied in absentia, he was advanced. First he became a deputy head then head of production for equipment, and then a head of the workshop. Since 2016, he has been the head of the operation service, and two years ago he received the position of chief mechanic of the enterprise.

He offered his wife to start work at the plant in 1998, after the collapse of Tsentrolit foundry, where she worked for 16 years. «In 1997, my workshop was closed, everyone was fired, and I lost my job,» Lyubov Pavlovna recalls. «My husband told me they are recruiting drug dispensers. At first I was doubtful: I was not in a mood to start from scratch, having a higher education, but in the end I agreed. And a month after starting to work, I became a shift supervisor, and then the head of the bottling and packaging area in the workshop. I worked there until March 2021.» Later the bottling and packaging area was closed, Lyubov Pavlovna was transferred to a new workshop and engaged in new production, where their daughter Tatiana also works now.

After graduating from school, Tatiana graduated from the psychology department of the Mordovia State University and settled with her husband in Kadoshkino near Saransk. There she taught at school for some time, but then returned to her parents and started to work for with her father. «I persuaded her to get another education, and now she is the deputy head of the workshop technological processes,» Alexander Nikolaevich proudly says. «Dad called me, he was the head of the third workshop, and I agreed,» Tatiana recalls. «My maternity leave has just ended and was looking for a job. I didn't even have any thoughts about another place. In May 2011, I joined the plant as a product stacker. Then I worked as a process technician, process technologist, and at the end of 2017, I received the position of deputy head of the workshop technological processes of the active pharmaceutical substances production area.»

Alexander Nikolaevich himself is also studying: «They tell us new approaches to proper production in order to get more productivity at a lower cost; on our part, we also use our best practices: how to save money, how to put this, to do that, how to start working day correctly. I set clear tasks for my subordinates and explain them in easily-accessible form. If something is unclear or goes wrong, we immediately sort out possible mistakes.» This is how Biokhimik’s staff increase productivity, and the plant provides great opportunities for career growth.

New horizons

The results of the first stage of activities to increase labor productivity at Biokhimik were not long in coming: due to the reduction in the production cycle duration and the minimization of rejected products, the production of finished medicines in ampoules doubled. The premises at the plant were redeveloped; the production was optimized and reconstructed.

The redevelopment reduced not only the number of operations, but also enabled saving on electricity. Participation in the project has become an incentive for employees for professional and personal development. The staff's production culture has improved as well as working conditions; more comfortable workplaces have been created. «The plant is growing, developing, and many new opportunities appear,» says Alexander Artyushin. «It is not just about salary. The company sends employees to various study courses, gives them the opportunity to get higher education.»

Most of employees at Biokhimik have already been trained, and several people have been certified as internal trainers and are now teaching other employees. The task is not to encourage people to work more, but to make people understand what to do through comfort environment and properly configured processes. In this way, the company will get better financial result.

The «Labor Productivity» national project was launched on October 1, 2018. It must involve ten thousand companies and enterprises in throughout Russia. The main objectives of the project are to stimulate the growth of efficiency of enterprises, to remove unnecessary administrative barriers and to develop export potential. To achieve this, personnel training and internship is carried out.

Source: Lenta.ru