Ford Motor Company held a call on April 30th for an in-depth briefing on the plan to restart the Ford workforce, including supply chain and UAW assembly employees. Since the COVID-19 shutdown, Ford Motor Company has used it’s Redford Michigan based Advanced Manufacturing center and it’s in-house 3D printing abilities to manufacture components and subassemblies for use in personal protection equipment. These efforts joined with paid volunteers have produced in excess of 10 million face shields, 4 million masks, 250k medical gowns, 6k air-purifying respirators, and 1,500 ventilators.
New employee safety and wellness protocols are outlined in what Ford is calling the “Return to Work Playbook” a live digital document to implement processes to maintain a safe environment for the entire facility. A daily self-survey is to be conducted digitally or by hard copy before entering any facility, followed by thermal scanning of each employee, further enhancements include touchless doors, staggered shifts, and increased sanitation procedures.
The Ford salary workforce made a shift from just 1,000 virtual employees to approximately 125,000 working remotely in a window of 48 hours. These salaried remote employees will be some of the last phased into the return to work, with hopes for late June or early July. In efforts to help assist the re-normalization of these employees with caregiving needs employees may have an option for a shift to part-time, flexing schedule or even 1-4 months of an enhanced sabbatical with 25% of their base pay.
While The Ford Motor Company is making huge strides to restore the ability to produce and distribute vehicles, Ford retailers have made operating adaptations to continue both sales and service operations. Ford Motor Company reports that of the 3,000 dealers in the United States 93% of them are offering online sales, 92% offering delivery, and 1/3 of total transactions in April were conducted online. Barber Ford of Exeter, a Pennslyvania dealer has continued serving the community by shifting the showroom to a foodbank on Saturdays.
You can read the entire press release here: Restarting Ford Safety Press Release