The National Dairy Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) Program’s Workforce Development (WFD) program supports dairy farmers in their proactive management of human resources (HR) and safety. The FARM WFD evaluation provides information about HR and safety best practices and enables farms to track improvement over time.
At Misty Mountain Dairy in Warfordsburg, PA, owners Richard, Scott, Mark and Lauren Mosemann saw the value of investing in employees early on. When the Mosemanns first started hiring help, they often found it difficult to find reliable employees. Over the years, Misty Mountain Dairy has grown and now has seven non-family, full-time employees and four family employees to help with the 500 milking cows and 400 heifers every day.
The Mosemanns put an emphasis on employee communications and understanding what the employees need to remain invested in the business. This has led to expansions like adding employee housing and holding staff meetings every other week where Lauren, Mark and the staff share a meal and discuss any concerns or needs the employees have.
“We try to create a family atmosphere and also make sure that employees have a say in the decisions that directly impact them,” Lauren Mosemann said. “We also want to make sure our employees are in the right roles, taking time to make sure they are working in a role that plays to their strengths, so they take pride in their work and take pride in the dairy.”
During their last Workforce Development evaluation, Misty Mountain Dairy set goals to update their employee handbook and to get updated state legal fact sheets. “When we had our last evaluation, it was a good opportunity to remind us of some of the things that got set aside because of the busy day-to-day farm operations,” Lauren Mosemann said. The Mosemanns regularly use resources available on the FARM Program’s website, and Lauren added that, “one of the wonderful benefits of the FARM Program is being able to go online and get what you need.”
FARM Workforce Development is improving awareness about HR and safety best practices on U.S. dairy farms. For more information about the WFD program, visit the FARM Program website.