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Effex Management Solutions - Executive of the Year


Gold Stevie Award Winner 2016, Click to Enter The 2017 Stevie Awards for Sales and Customer service

Company: Effex Management Solutions, Kingwood, TX
Company Description: Effex Management Solutions specializes in staffing and large volume contingent workforce management solutions that transforms production efficiency and increases client’s bottom line. We do this by ensuring our clients receive a qualified labor force and guaranteeing facilities will be 100% staffed, every single day.
Nomination Category: Management Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Executive of the Year - Business & Professional Services

Nomination Title: Tara Jones

Tell the story about what this nominated executive has achieved since January 1, 2016 (up to 650 words). Describe the impact he or she has had on your organization. Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms.

Tara Jones is the VP of Operations for Effex Management Solutions, a large volume contingent workforce management solutions firm headquartered in Kingwood, Texas. It employs over 6,500 workers in 34 manufacturing, distribution and warehouse facilities across the United States. Her fierce leadership skill are among many reasons why she's essential to Effex’s impressive 100% client retention. Previously serving in the United States Marine Corps - where she earned two Meritorious Masts and a National Defense Medal - Tara’s operations are guided by their core values, Honor, Courage, and Commitment. In fact, the concept of core values played such an important role in her life, it was clear that Effex required something as powerful. In 2016, among many other accomplishments, she made this dream a reality.

Tara’s impressive resume boasts previous executive experience with Fortune 100 companies, including working as VP of Client Fulfillment for Bank of America. Genya Van Houten, a Customer Call Center Senior at Freddie Mac, had this to say about Tara:

“Tara and I worked together in Preferred Services which was a new initiative with Bank of America. Tara has tremendous energy, sales talent, and leadership skills. She consistently ranked in the top 10% for overall production, had several customer accolades...and was an invaluable team-mate and asset to the site.”

With a multi-faceted background in areas like sales, recruiting, training, and operations, Tara has the business acumen critical to strategic planning for Effex customers. From process improvement to employee development, Tara proved that 2016 was a pivotal year. She began by empowering all recruiters with tools to improve their performance. Tara introduced and trained recruiters on tools such as Gap Tracker, Track My Drive, Kudos, Redbooth and Expensify. With the introduction of each tool, Tara not only trained but expressed the importance of immediate adoption to pace with Effex's rapid growth. Along the lines of empowerment, every employee was provided access to professional development resources such as an online Learn Management System and in-person management training. One Effex employee had this to say about a three day training event:

“I just wanted to say how much I personally appreciate everything that you all contributed to making last week a success. It took some of your personal/family time to organize and host such an event, and I am very grateful. The training we received and the camaraderie we achieved are invaluable results of your efforts and sacrifice.”

As someone who is responsible for Effex consistently delivers cutting-edge service, Tara set her sights on going paperless. Under Tara’s guidance, 34 locations successfully moved from paper applications and onboarding documents to Android tablets. In addition, text messaging was introduced to help applicants directly access an application from a mobile device. This was not just a $300,000/year savings initiative, but a statement that Effex is poised for the future.

With a new future in sight, Tara remembered her days as an Air Traffic Controller Sergeant and the commitment to live by the Marine Corps core values. Inspired by her own experience and after careful development, a new brand and core values of Effex emerged. Without Tara’s unique personal experience, Effex wouldn't have had a leader better positioned to develop such a powerful compass for current and future employees.

In her spare time, Tara contributes to Effex's Workforce Management blog. In 2016, she authored 14 articles that generated over 1,000 views. These articles have thrusted Effex into the top organic search positions and significantly increased its online visibility.

Tara’s outstanding results certainly have not gone unnoticed, as she was awarded three Bronze Stevies for Female Executive of the Year, Maverick of the Year and Mentor or Coach of the Year. To close on the subject of recognition, something that can be said is her humble attitude in the face of it. Tara's gracious nature of recognizing her supporting team is why Effex clients remain committed and why employees seek her for guidance.

In bullet-list form, briefly summarize up to ten (10) of the chief accomplishments of this nominated executive since the beginning of 2016.

- Developed and introduced new company branding
- Implemented text messaging recruiting application, resulting in over 600 application requests in 3 months
- Implemented Kudos, a recognition system that improved company morale and reduced facility fragmentation
- Created and co-hosted “Stop Turnover at the Source” webinar, generating 451 registrants and 237 attendees
- Introduced tiered management positions above and below existing Program Manager roles, creating redundancy within the sites and regional upper level executive support
- Implemented Pros and Cons program to measure/improve employee performance that's tied to company bonus structure
- Created 12-24 Standard Operating Procedures and Site Information Worksheets for each site, ensuring a consistent service level
- Developed Effex Coaching Template, educating employees on strengths/weaknesses to increase professional development and management dialogue
- Lead paperless initiative, saving Effex over $300,000/yr and moving towards a green initiative
- Assisted in new business development, netting $34 million in company revenue and three additional facilities in Missouri, Kentucky and Tennessee