LAUNCH RESPONDS TO CHANGE WITH ADAPTABILITY, TECHNOLOGY & DIVERSIFICATION
Nearly every type of business has been strongly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Most have seen their business drop off drastically, while a small number of industries have seen large spikes. LAUNCH certainly experienced major changes, but our leaders and team have shown the company’s nimble nature during a time of great volatility.
LAUNCH serves a variety of clients and industries throughout the US and the world with technical workforce solutions, but the largest client partnerships fall squarely in aviation maintenance and aircraft manufacturing. As one of the hardest hit sectors, our clients and contractors felt an almost overnight drop. Airline clients and those in maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) were the most drastic, and LAUNCH contract employees working on those sites quickly lost their jobs. At the same time, stay at home orders were put in place and all LAUNCH staff members were forced to begin working from home. It was a scenario taking place in businesses and offices around the world.
While we never planned for such an event, the LAUNCH team jumped into action and realized just how nimble our business could be when necessary. The recruiting team, by far the most interactive team at LAUNCH, went completely virtual. While they were used to recruiting mechanics and technicians virtually, they lost the team environment that created so much energy among them on a day to day basis. The LAUNCH focus on state-of-art technology had well prepared us for this need. Jean Rollo, LAUNCH President and COO, has a long history in IT and was able to get the staff fully equipped in record time. “Technology has always been an important part of our company, but it became even more essential in the current environment. It’s amazing how fast we were able to respond, in retrospect. We knew we had to get each staff member set up remotely, and in our line of work, there is no downtime,” said Jean. Each recruiter was set up with their own workstation at home and twice-daily team calls were established. The team definitely rose to the occasion and barely missed a beat.
Similarly, the sales teams learned to find new ways to stay close with our current clients – and continue to reach out to new ones – virtually. Used to being road warriors and visiting on-site and in-person with clients, this was a big shift. Using video and conference calls, electronic collateral and perseverance, the team has become innovative in maintaining and building those relationships. Mike Guagenti, LAUNCH CEO, quickly worked to re-focus the sales team where needed. “LAUNCH clients with aircraft storage capabilities quickly moved to the forefront with the need for surge hiring as multiple airlines began parking their planes. The recruiting team formed a plan and jumped into action, doing what they do best – locating and hiring qualified mechanics,” said Mike. Soon LAUNCH was sending hundreds of mechanics from across the country to Arizona, New Mexico and California to help our clients perform the necessary work for the airlines. Mike adds, “This helped us put many of our contractors back to work and continues to provide a large employment base as airlines grapple with the long-term needs for their hefty inventory of aircraft.” In addition, companies operating cargo fleets experienced a new rush in their business, and many cargo clients and maintenance facilities turned to LAUNCH to help add to their teams.
During this same time period, the leaders of LAUNCH knew they needed to find ways to help the business diversify with so much of the aviation industry conducting layoffs. While LAUNCH provides industrial skilled trades and ground transportation technicians in a variety of industries, many of the staff members on this team were new to LAUNCH. However, this became the perfect opportunity to focus our efforts towards this side of the business, with extra staff members joining in to provide support. Manufacturing and distribution are two industries that benefited from increases in business due to the pandemic. LAUNCH was able to solidify several client relationships that had been in the works, while expanding our presence with many others. Mike also helped the team refocus their efforts towards many of our vendor management system (VMS) accounts, which had previously been difficult to manage in light of other commitments. Together, these new efforts towards diversification have helped LAUNCH maintain a large portion of its previous revenue levels and ensured the financial stability of the company.
“As we look towards the future and a rebound of the aviation industry, LAUNCH will be working closely with our client partners to help build their teams back up and work to streamline their business,” says Jean. “We understand the need to reformulate and refine when going through incredible fluctuations, just as we have done in our own business.” Mike agrees and adds, “Our commitment to building long-term relationships with our clients and contractors will be even more critical as we work to respond to their unique needs over the coming months. We look forward to this challenge and know we will be a stronger, more technologically advanced and diversified company moving forward.”
LAUNCH is the premier source for technical workforce solutions and is transforming how aviation and other industries achieve business success. More than just providing labor solutions, LAUNCH discovers and responds to the unique needs of each of our clients and contractors. As the world’s largest workforce solution for the aviation industry, no other company can match LAUNCH’s customer-driven and technologically advanced systems, our steadfast professionalism, and our deep commitment to both our clients and our contractors. We lead. We partner. We care.
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