Local businesses look for employees at job fair

Parkersburg News and Sentinel’s advertising manager Mary Jo Miller, left, and advertising assistant Lacey Richards, center, speak with a woman about job openings at the newspaper. There were 27 businesses represented at Friday’s job fair at Grand Pointe Conference and Reception Center in Vienna. (Photo by Jeff Baughan)

VIENNA — There was a silent but consistent theme at Friday’s Parkersburg News and Sentinel Job Fair at Grand Pointe Conference and Reception Center. It was “immediate openings, looking to fill immediately.”

There were 27 businesses at 24 tables — many had double digit numbers of jobs to fill.

Organizer Mary Jo Miller, who also serves as the News and Sentinel’s advertising manager, stated “every year a job fair is requested. The need for more employees has been a constant. The area has more jobs than it has employees right now.

“When I started working with the job fairs eight years ago, about 75 percent of the jobs were medical and 25 percent production,” she added. “Now those numbers have reversed themselves. It’s 75 percent industrial and about 25 percent medical.”

Hino’s Tyler Leubner, a human resources specialist, said the truck manufacturer is still working on filling the 80-100 jobs which will be added when Hino moves from its Williamstown location to the renovated facility at Mineral Wells. It was the first time for Hino to participate in the job fair.

Anthony Titus, far left, of Bankers Life Insurance and Investments, speaks with Autumn Gloeckner while Chris Martin speaks with a woman during Friday’s Parkersburg News and Sentinel Job Fair at Grand Pointe Conference and Reception Center in Vienna. (Photo by Jeff Baughan)

“We’re ramping up for the move,” he said. “We need the workforce to bolster the transition.” Leubner said the transition will begin in November and will be completed by the summer of 2019.

“We’re looking for entry level workforce,” he said. “The workforce renovation has been ongoing at Mineral Wells since the announcement was made. Moving to Mineral Wells is going to allow us to produce trucks at a faster rate, which means we will be producing more trucks.”

Katie Kelly, marketing manager for Manpower, which shared space with Hino, said interested people can apply for positions at Hino at manpower.com

Jenny Sampson, a human resources generalist with Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc., of Marietta, said the medical equipment manufacturer had 40 open positions as of Friday “and most are skilled labor positions.

“We make bio safety cabinets, incubators, ultra-low temperature freezers,” she said. “Hospital lab equipment; anything you might find in a hospital, research, universities. We have 430 employees and we are looking for more. It’s a five days a week, eight hour shifts, three shifts a day.”

Tyler Leubner, a human resource specialist with Hino, speaks to a couple at Friday’s Parkersburg News and Sentinel Job Fair at Grand Pointe Conference and Reception Center in Vienna. (Photo by Jeff Baughan)

James Hensley of On-Board, a production and manufacturing company at the Washington Works of DuPont and Chemours, said the 180 employees are spread throughout numerous buildings of DuPont and handle packaging of some DuPont products.

“We’re here, reaching out to the community to let them know we’re here and we have jobs,” he said. “These are full-time, permanent work jobs. We build boxes at DuPont and feed baglines into machines. The company works within DuPont, works onsite at DuPont and goes by DuPont rules.”

Miller stated approximately 150 people visited the job fair during its three hours of operation.

Autumn Gloeckner of Parkersburg was looking to re-enter the workforce after being a stay-at-home mom for a year. “The boys are in school throughout the day and the husband is working,” she said. “I’m looking for a job to supplement the household income and give my boys a chance at some advantages they might not have an opportunity for if I didn’t work.”

Arthur Ray of Parkersburg stated he was “half-looking and just half-browsing” through the list of businesses at the fair. “I know minimum wage won’t cut it with the bills.”

Ray explained he was still in school looking to finish up with drafting and engineering classes. “I’m looking to get into the production and assembly area and just start working my way up. The drafting degree I’m working on will have engineering ties to it.

“I walked in and saw what I expected to see and then some,” he said. “I found more than I expected today and that was a good thing for me.”