We’re building a world-class team by offering industry-leading benefits
Since 1901, Columbia Steel has employed workers who live and raise families here in the Pacific Northwest. As we work together making high-quality, American-made parts for industry, Columbia Steel also focuses on providing a stable workplace where our employees can thrive on and off the job. One marker of our success in this mission is a large group of long-tenured employees, including 64 people who have worked here for at least 20 years. Ten of those employees have been here for at least 40 years.
To help foster an environment that both values and encourages long-term employment, we’ve developed a benefits package that offers low-cost health care, retirement planning services, and career advancement opportunities.
Low-Cost Health Insurance
We strongly believe that healthy employees live happier and more fulfilling lives. Unfortunately, many businesses have reacted to rising health care costs by switching to high deductible health insurance plans. This means that for millions of American workers, accessing healthcare is still extremely expensive, even though they’re insured. Columbia Steel is different.
Our organization is fortunate to be part of the UMTA Trust — founded nearly 70 years ago with support from former Columbia Steel CEO Hobart Bird — which offers low-cost health and dental benefits to over 4,000 members in the industrial trades. Thanks to our membership, Columbia Steel employees and their families enjoy reasonable premiums and very low out-of-pocket costs, making medical care more affordable.
In addition to providing for our employee’s health, Columbia Steel also helps them plan for their futures. Our union employees benefit from a pension plan administered by the United Steelworkers or Portland Patternmakers. All employees have the option to participate in our company’s 401(k) plan, which features a Roth provision for post-tax contributions.
Our retirement program includes a one-on-one meeting with a financial planner who helps our employees map out their goals for retirement and then create a plan for getting there. With a little support and some long-term thinking, Columbia Steel employees will enjoy a comfortable retirement as a reward for years of hard work.
Opportunities for Advancement
Of course, retirement is the culmination of an entire career, so before our employees step out of the workforce, we want to give them every opportunity to advance at Columbia Steel as they level-up their responsibilities and compensation.
Entry-level workers start at $17-$19 per hour and typically bid up to another position within just three months. It doesn’t take much longer for most employees to make the top wage in their job class. Along the way, they’ll have opportunities to expand their skills — including company-sponsored training classes for inspectors and molders, which lead to higher earnings.
Promoting from within is also crucial to our success. Many employees begin their journey by moving into lead positions on the shop floor. This internal focus is one of the reasons we have so many employees with decades of service at Columbia Steel.
Another great way for our employees to advance in their careers is by pursuing outside educational opportunities. In addition to our on-the-job training and internal promotion endeavors, we also offer generous education reimbursements. This self-directed program helps employees pursue a two-year or four-year accredited program or degree that relates to their career ambitions here at Columbia Steel.
We’re always looking for new faces to join our ranks, which is why we encourage our employees to refer people they know to our open positions. If we hire someone referred by one of our employees, both people receive a $250 referral bonus after six months of successful employment — our way of saying “thanks.”
It’s our philosophy that by supporting our employees’ health, giving them tools to plan for their future and providing opportunities for their educational and career enrichment, we can build a team that’s second to none in the industry.