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Pridgeon & Clay

Pridgeon & Clay (P&C) was founded in 1948 right here in Grand Rapids, Michigan. They’re one of the largest independent, value-added manufacturers and suppliers of automotive stamped and fine-blanked components in the U.S. Their products serve the automotive, heavy truck, agriculture, battery, fuel cell and alternative energy industries. While P&C’s corporate headquarters is still located in Grand Rapids, they have additional manufacturing facilities in Indiana, Mexico, and Hungary as well as a Sales and Engineering arm in Shanghai, China.


HR managers know well how difficult it has been to find employees since the COVID pandemic hit our state. For P&C it was no different. Like everyone else, they used several temp agencies at the same time to obtain as many workers as possible. The Job Post was among the agencies they worked with when Tami Barnes, HR Manager at P&C, first came to work there.

“The strategy of using multiple agencies did help,” Tami said. “But I define my HR needs as (1) finding the right workers and (2) getting those employees to stay on with us permanently.” She said many agencies fail to live up to both of these needs. “But in most cases, The Job Post candidates consistently meet both goals. The Job Post is extremely responsive and help us move quickly throughout the challenges,” she added.

“The Job Post is extremely responsive and help us move quickly throughout the challenges.”

Yet COVID changed the candidate market almost irreparably. Tami felt there were two big reasons for this:

  1. Families that once relied on two incomes realized after being laid off during COVID that they made no more money when both parents worked after child care costs were considered. It made no sense for both to return to work, plus it improved the family dynamics to have one parent home full time.
  2. Other people adopted the attitude of ‘I’ll work when I feel like it.’ This was likely created by the instability COVID created when there were many stop-start work cycles–it became their norm and they liked it.


Production press at Pridgeon & Clay

Tami was not about to give up on finding a solution to P&C’s worker shortage. She looked into two agencies that were ‘killing it.’ The agencies both had the same strategy, which she calls ‘The Contractor Method’: They gathered together skilled, reliable workers and “lent” them to a company for a specific period of time. The employees start work at the company at the same time and work for a set number of weeks or months. Then they all leave at once. This strategy ensured the immediate job would be completed for the company, although things could easily get behind again.

The team of contractors liked it since they didn’t have to work the next round if they didn’t feel like it, with no repercussions on their resume. The big issue with this strategy was that the agencies were charging companies up to 4 times the standard hourly rate for their service.


“I realized I could run a contractor-like strategy myself . . . There was no doubt in my mind which agency I would ask to help: The Job Post! ”

This instance was special though. Tami thought about her dilemma and the contractor option, and also about targeting workers in group 2 above: those that only worked when they felt like it. Then a lightbulb went off. “I realized I could run a contractor-like strategy myself!” she said. But she would need the help of a job agency to make it work. One that she trusted, one that would make the commitment, and one that would advertise solely for her company to get the right people. “There was no doubt in my mind which agency I would ask to help: The Job Post!”

Within a week the plan was set. The Job Post advertised on P&C’s behalf to hire workers over a long weekend, when most of their other production staff were not there. They offered: 

  • Three 12-hour days with a high rate of pay per hour
  • Pay for 40 hours per week when they only worked 36 hours
  • Temporary, 8-week time period

Then it was fingers crossed that it would work and that they would generate enough interest to get the workforce they needed. At least temporarily.


The strategy was a huge success. Candidates that The Job Post sent P&C were the right fit, and in most cases worked the entire 8 weeks. “We had originally planned both a day and a night shift, but due to the program’s success and the candidates’ preferred work times, we ended up only needing night shift,” Tami said. “A surprise benefit for us was that after the employees’ 8 weeks were over, most of them wanted to stay on working for P&C on a regular 40-hour per week shift. So we ended up meeting both criteria again! Not only did we save by The Job Post’s willingness to run the contractor program for us, but hiring them in permanently could not have happened had we gone with one of the contractor agencies.”


In addition to The Job Post’s willingness to run the contractor program and its superior results,  Tami mentioned other things she loves about The Job Post. “Communication with The Job Post is great. They don’t leave me hanging and always follow through. Everyone there has great integrity.”

“I’ll recommend them to anyone who needs a good staffing agency to find the right people!”

Another item she mentioned referred to how the candidates they send to P&C are prepared and ready to work. “They’re honest with their candidates about the role they are expected to perform and what it will be like to work at P&C. That makes a big difference in sending the right employees since there are no surprises for them once they start working here.”

While Tami was not aware of The Job Post’s relationship with Guiding Light, and how any profits earned by the agency go to that charity, she was enlightened to learn about how their partnership with The Job Post helps the community and provides a sustainable approach to homelessness.

Going forward, she plans to continue Pridgeon & Clay’s partnership with The Job Post. “They’re great to work with, and I’ll recommend them to anyone who needs a good staffing agency to find the right people!”

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The word is getting around town that The Job Post is serious about putting people back to work. We do the hard work of breaking down the barriers that prevent someone from getting a job.

The Job Post is Guiding Light’s onsite staffing company – our very own social enterprise that serves the staffing needs of local businesses and the men and women who come in looking for work.

The Job Post
255 Division Ave S
Grand Rapids, MI 49503
(616) 214-7991

Monday – Friday: 9AM – 4PM
Saturday – Sunday: Closed

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