From Fields to Factories: How AgriStaff and LaborOne are Building a Labor Force for the Future

Written by Emma Huehns

Frankie and Becky Rodriguez have carved a remarkable entrepreneurial journey with their staffing agencies, AgriStaff and LaborOne Staffing Solutions. Both companies, founded with a vision to bridge the gap in employment services, particularly for the Hispanic population, have evolved into thriving enterprises that serve a diverse range of industries.

Frankie, originally from Puerto Rico, discovered his passion for horses  while there, eventually leading him to work with high-end dressage and show jumping horses. It was during this journey that he crossed paths with his wife, Becky, in the United States. Together, they ventured into the realm of staffing solutions. In 2015, they founded AgriStaff with the initial goal of catering to the needs of dairy farmers, providing not just labor but also essential services like translation and conflict resolution. With Wisconsin’s agriculture sector providing a staggering 435,700 jobs, constituting 11.8% of the state’s employment, they became integral in filling a large demand in the labor industry.

As the demand for their services grew, Frankie and Becky expanded their operations, with LaborOne Staffing Solutions. This business primarily focused on the manufacturing sector, recognizing its significance as manufacturing jobs make up around 29.4% of Manitowoc County’s workforce jobs. With an understanding of the needs of both employers and employees, LaborOne emerged as a key player in connecting skilled labor with manufacturing enterprises across the state.

What sets AgriStaff and LaborOne apart is their personalized approach and deep-rooted connections within the Hispanic community. Frankie’s reputation as the go-to person for job opportunities among the Hispanic workforce underscores their unique branding strategy. They’ve built trust through networking, ensuring they’re known not just as staffing agencies but as allies and advocates for job seekers and employers alike.

Frankie and Becky Rodriguez receiving the Rising Star Award at Progress Lakeshore's Excellence in Economic Development Awards Breakfast.

Unlike most businesses, Covid provided opportunity for growth with both of their businesses. As many industries grappled with labor shortages, particularly those willing to navigate language barriers, AgriStaff and LaborOne rose to the occasion, offering not just staffing solutions but also bridging cultural divides and fostering harmonious workplace environments.

Partnerships with organizations like Progress Lakeshore have further strengthened their presence, allowing them to connect with local businesses and contribute to the County and state’s workforce development. Progress Lakeshore was able to assist Frankie and Becky with their business plan and locating office space, connecting them with the City of Kiel and providing support in establishing their businesses in Manitowoc County. Additionally, AgriStaff was recognized with Progress Lakeshore’s 2016 Rising Star Award for emerging small businesses.

Reflecting on their journey, Frankie offers his advice to aspiring entrepreneurs. He emphasizes the importance of flexibility and innovation, urging fellow business owners to be open to adjusting their strategies based on market demands. Success, according to him, lies not just in sticking to a rigid plan but in adapting and evolving with the business. Frankie and Becky Rodriguez’s story exemplifies the power of resilience, innovation, and community-driven entrepreneurship. Through AgriStaff and LaborOne Staffing Solutions, they’ve not only built successful businesses but have also made a lasting impact on countless lives.


Learn more about AgriStaff here!

Learn more about LaborOne Staffing Solutions here