Wabash National Corporation is awarding a 4.1% wage increase in 2003 to all full-time manufacturing associates, the first increase in more than two years.

The decision comes as a result of an innovative four-month performance-based wage increase program, during which associates were challenged to achieve pre-determined build rates tied to an increasing wage scale.

In addition to providing associates with a higher-than-average wage increase, the Lafayette, Indiana based company benefited from an improvement in manufacturing efficiencies, and improved quality, safety, and on-time delivery, as a result of the program.

“This challenge to our associates, tying the amount of an increase to pre-established production targets, provided them a level of control over the size of their wage increase,” said Richard Giromini, senior vice president and chief operating officer. “This is a win-win situation for the associates and the company. Without the improvements in productivity, we would not have been able to provide an increase.”