Background

Vitro Architectural Glass is North America’s largest glass producer. Dedicated to glass innovation, they are fueled by the same people, plants and products that made PPG Glass one of the industry’s most respected and reliable commercial glass manufacturers. According to a recent study conducted by Dodge Data Analytics, Vitro Glass products are the most commonly specified brand of commercial glass in the industry.

Now operating under a global company exclusively committed to growing its core glass business, architects can expect accelerated research and development efforts in addition to greater capacity in years to come. The Vitro Architectural Glass (formerly PPG Glass) plant in Salem, Oregon, is a glass-coating facility that applies energy-saving thin film coating to glass using an MSVD (magnetic-sputtered vacuum deposition) process.

$185,000
Saved in Training Costs and Tracking Systems
$96,000
Saved by process improvements and downtime reduction
$66,200
Saved in Training Time

The Situation

Vitro connected with OMEP to build a better workforce development process in an effort to better attract and retain employees, as well as integrate new employees more efficiently. They desired to cut down on training costs and time to proficiency. Additionally, Vitro hoped to create sustainable internal on-the-job training for continued employee growth and develop their talent pipeline. Along with increasing employee engagement, Vitro wanted OMEP’s assistance in driving improvement in their level of work quality; and productivity.

The Solution

Vitro and OMEP worked together to create and implement a plan to attract and retain talent. Together they developed a more robust and structured Onboarding process, that and provided development and integration guidance for new employees from day one. This new orientation approach help employees to understand Vitro’s culture and performance values more quickly and allowed them to contribute to organizational success faster.

OMEP partnered with Vitro to identify and upskill several trained employees to deliver the program. This program leveraged previously underutilized employees as internal technical experts.  Along with the creation of career development pathways for both new and existing employees, over 65 job skill and knowledge modules, 21 job aids, and several troubleshooting guides were built to support and optimize the training process for multiple roles and jobs across the company.

The Results

During this implementation of the new workforce development structure, operational management improvements, and the creation of define development paths, Vitro and OMEP established a quality standardization process to drive quality in their product categories, leading to cost savings across the board. Due to process improvement and decreased downtime they saved $96,000. By developing and upskilling their internal workers to effectively deliver the program, Vitro saved $175,000 in training costs and $10,000 in complex tracking systems. Finally, the reduction of training time for operators, glass processors and crane operations was $66,200 for a total of $689,800 in cost savings.

Vitro is now on the path to continued growth and success with a sustainable training program for new hires, and well-established career paths that keep existing workers engaged.


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The more issues we looked into the more we saw that OMEP had tools and experience to help us eliminate, reduce or prevent the wastes that were overwhelming our organization. After perseverance/ discipline to the tools / system, we reduced our downtime from almost 40% to under 30%. Yield increased from 85% to over 90%, saving us hundreds of thousands of dollars and allowing us to be a reliable supplier to our customers.

Joe Terns
Plant Manager

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