In the fast-paced world of freight transportation, success is often determined by a carrier’s ability to deliver goods damage-free and on-time, but really, it’s driven by the people behind the scenes who make it all happen.
That’s why new Chief Human Resources Officer of XPO, Carolyn Roach, is highly focused building a workplace culture where each team member can thrive and feel motivated to perform at their best.
“Freight transportation, at its heart, is a people-driven business,” says Roach. “At XPO, we are only as good as the level of service and quality we can provide to our customers through our people, and we know we will be most successful when we have a fully engaged and motivated workforce.”
“It is critical to me and to our leaders that our teams are very excited to come to work each day, and at the end of their shift, they get to go home safely to their friends and family and be proud of the service they have delivered,” Roach continues.
Roach says her goal is to help XPO to become the preferred employer in the transportation industry, where talent at all levels can have not just a job, but an opportunity to build a rewarding career.
Attracting, training and retaining the best talent for the freight carrier is her and her team’s top priority.
When joining the company, Roach was pleased to see that XPO already had a wide range of accelerated learning programs to help employees at all levels and functions advance in their careers.
One of Roach’s personal favorites is Grow at XPO, a program designed to help hourly employees become leaders and move into higher-paying roles with more responsibility within the organization.
Grow at XPO gives entry-level employees an opportunity to job shadow people in leadership roles, participate in hands-on workshops and have targeted career conversations with their managers. Since launching Grow at XPO in 2020, XPO continues to enhance the program based on employee feedback.
XPO also provides Freight Management Training (FMT) to high-potential hourly employees, veterans and recent college graduates to become freight operations supervisors. FMT offers a comprehensive curriculum with case studies, process overviews and job evaluations to accelerate learning before placement in the field.
Diversity, equity and inclusion is also central to XPO’s culture and goal of attracting top talent.
“Organizations need to focus on diversity, equity and inclusion because it is good for business,” Roach said. “It drives innovation, it pushes us to think differently, it highlights different ideas, and it is also the right thing to do.”
Roach describes her approach to DEI as “inclusion-first,” as she believes that inclusivity is directly linked to diversity and supports the attraction and retention of diverse talent. This approach also underpins XPO’s workforce policies and programs.
A big part of creating a strong culture and engaging work environment is staying close to employees, listening to their feedback, and incorporating their ideas for improvement, according to Roach.
XPO leadership strives to keep in contact with employees at all levels about workplace satisfaction and ideas on ways to make XPO an even better place to build a career. XPO CEO, Mario Harik, and the entire management team, including Roach, spend a lot of time in the field, talking with employees. They gather — and implement — feedback through regular roundtables, quarterly surveys and other channels to better understand the needs of employees.
The approach is working. “We are seeing the highest employee satisfaction scores in the company’s history,” Roach said.
Click here to learn about current career opportunities at XPO.
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