Watco

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About the Company

Watco is a single-source transportation and supply chain services company with locations throughout North America and Australia.
Founded in 1983, we grew from one locomotive into a leading transportation services company. Today, we own and operate a diverse and unmatched network of short line railroads, terminals, ports, and repair terminals.
Because of our depth and breadth of integrated services, our customers enjoy:
All modes of transportation
Service in any market
Transport of any material, commodity, or product
Customized supply chain solutions

Our Certifications

See what we've been awarded.

2022

Certified Company
Certified Company
2022

2021

This company has not yet been certified in this year
Company Headquarters

Headquarters location:

315 West 3rd Street, Pittsburg, KS 66762

Company Headquarters

Industry:

Transportation/Trucking/Railroad


Company Headquarters

Company CEO's name:

Dan Smith

Company Headquarters

Number of employees:

1001 - 10000

Life in our company

See What It Is Like to Work Here

Why Watco IS A MOST LOVED WORKPLACE®

Systemic Collaboration

EMPLOYEES COLLABORATE THROUGHOUT OUR COMPANY BY …

… avoiding silos. We believe none of us is as smart as all of us. Our operations leaders set the tone by meeting first thing every Monday. Each day, our field teams review the plan for that day. We embrace collaboration. It’s a necessity when providing multiple services to customers. For example, when a customer wants to get freight to a destination, their Watco contact utilizes experts throughout our company in transportation; transloading; material handling and storage; third-party logistics and beyond to find the most efficient way to deliver their freight.

Positive Vision of the Future

EMPLOYEES AT OUR COMPANY HAVE A POSITIVE VISION FOR THE FUTURE BECAUSE …

… they’re confident in Watco’s leadership team and vision. Watco’s leaders are repeatedly acknowledged by industry partners for their achievements, influence, and expertise. In addition, our past success predicts future success. We are growing. The company has experienced steady revenue growth, exceeding $1 billion for the first time in 2019 and earning $1.4 billion in revenues in 2021. A Watco priority is to identify, coach, and mentor the next generation of leadership. Team members move around the company to gain skills and knowledge and also are promoted within the company. We had hundreds of these moves in 2021.

Company Respect

WE SHOW RESPECT AND ENSURE THAT ALL VOICES ARE HEARD AND IDEAS ARE VALUED THROUGHOUT THE COMPANY BY …

… reinforcing an open-door policy. How many CEO’s give out their email and phone number to employees? Ours does. Plus, he and other top leaders try to drop in to visit as many locations as possible. Our human resources (People Services) managers conduct “stay” interviews (versus exit interviews) to learn what Watco is doing right and where we can improve. The work and character of our team members who are living out Watco’s Foundation Principles are recognized each quarter with our Be the Difference awards acknowledging safe performance, going the extra mile, and exceptional teamwork.

Company Support / Killer Outcomes

WE SUPPORT OUR EMPLOYEES IN ACHIEVING THEIR PROFESSIONAL AND PERSONAL GOALS BY …

… offering about 8,000 online, on-demand business and industry training courses through Watco University. Its Leadership Development component is designed to broaden opportunities for team members selected by their supervisors. And there’s a separate, highly regarded leadership training program that’s specific to sales. Watco has a tuition reimbursement program and a special safety committee that helps identify and develop potential leaders. Managers support team members with annual reviews and goal-setting. Team members enjoy work-life balance. For example, supervisors schedule workers so they’re not always on the road overnight and can attend family activities.

Alignment of Values

OUR COMPANY’S VALUES ARE ALIGNED WITH OUR EMPLOYEES BECAUSE …

… from the start, Watco immerses new team members in our culture and values. As a result, team members embody what Watco is known for: the importance we place on customers, team members, and safety. Team members prioritize customers and identify solutions. Watco hires team members for cultural fit even more than skill set. And safety is at the center of all we do. In fact, in 2021, we doubled the capacity of our safety training center. Our company succeeds because our team members buy into and live our core values every day.

Company Practices / Love

PROGRAMS AND PRACTICES WE GIVE TO OUR EMPLOYEES THAT CREATE A LOVED WORKPLACE ARE …

… numerous! Full-time, salaried workers have an open vacation policy. Our site managers celebrate team members with cookouts or on-site food trucks. They issue Watco bucks as rewards that can be exchanged for Watco-branded merchandise. One stress-busting branch manager knows when it’s time to pass a football (inside the office!). Watco sponsors team members’ sports teams. Anniversaries, births, and other milestones are recognized through company communications channels. Our unwritten hiring and retention rule is: No jerks allowed

CEO Strengths

OUR CEO SERVES AS A MODEL OF OUR COMPANY VALUES BY …

… being humble and not above the rules. Years ago, while on a site visit, he exited a truck to talk to team members. One stopped him because he didn’t have the required safety apparel. That might not have set well with some CEOs, but ours thanked the team for doing the right thing and bought everyone pizza. Another time when he was meeting at a Watco location, a local customer called for assistance at the end of the day to fix some railroad track. Our CEO rolled up his sleeves to help, taking direction from team members.

Benefits

EXAMPLES OF UNIQUE BENEFITS, BONUS, OR COMPENSATION WE PROVIDE ARE …

… great health benefits. When brokers benchmark our plan, they often cite that it’s a “richer benefit” compared to other companies of our size. Each year, Watco contributes up to $1,000 for team members to use for health expenses. Annually, Watco gives a Thanksgiving turkey allowance, Christmas bonuses, and scholarships for team members’ dependents. For team members in financial distress, Watco offers a loan program. In addition, team members receive discounts on car rentals or purchases, hotel rooms, cell phone plans, computer purchases, fitness memberships, hearing aids, personal protective equipment, amusement park admissions, and more.

Our response to COVID-19

As an essential part of the supply chain, Watco has stayed open to deliver the raw goods and other commodities needed to keep the world moving. Precautions and changes to maintain worker safety include temporarily moving in-person training to online; suspending non-essential travel; working remotely, and for those whose jobs required on-site work, minimizing potential outbreaks by staggering work shifts; and offering on-site vaccine clinics. For vaccinated team members who contract COVID-19, the company has extended the 80-hours-paid-sick-leave benefit beyond the legally mandated time period.