FOX CROSSING – Pierce Manufacturing‘s lobby was filled last week with potential employees during the company’s hiring event at its facility on American Drive.
The hiring event was the second the company has hosted in an effort to fill 200 new positions that’ll be created by an expansion of its truck-building plants in Neenah and Fox Crossing. Those jobs include welders, painters, electricians, assemblers and material coordinators.
“I’m looking to hire about 120 today,” said Stephen Kohler, Pierce’s director of human resources.
Pierce, the custom fire apparatus subsidiary of Oshkosh Corp., announced in November it would start work on a 90,000-square-foot expansion of its Fox Crossing location and a 60,000-square-foot expansion of its Neenah facility. The company said the expansions, expected to be done in the fall, are needed to help it keep up with global demand for its trucks.
Kohler said job offers had been extended to more than 50 people within an hour of the start of last week’s hiring event. The company hired about 60 people at at a similar event in October.
Extensive mechanical knowledge isn’t needed for those who want to apply, as long as they’ve had some experience in the field, Kohler said.
“When we start people, we realize that people come from all different backgrounds so we provide training,” he said. “We put them through about four weeks of technical training to get them ready to go into the workforce. So if people have a good mechanical aptitude and are willing to learn, we’ll teach them.”
Kohler said the training gives employees knowledge on how to crimp wires, read blueprints, identify tools and more.
While the expansion isn’t expected to be completed until fall, new hires will not have to wait until it is completed to begin working at the factory.
“There’s a long learning curve,” Kohler said. “It takes a long time to learn how to build a custom, so we started hiring last year for this.”
Although supply shortages are affecting manufacturers across the nation, Kohler said the company’s productivity hasn’t seen any dramatic changes because of it.
Kohler encourages anyone who was unable to attend the hiring event to apply for a position through Pierce’s website.
“This is work that matters,” Kohler said. “Everyone understands the mission of what this product is for and that peoples lives depend on it, not only the firefighter but the people or the property that they’re going to save.”
Pierce Manufacturing started in 1913 building custom vehicles, but moved to solely manufacturing firefighting equipment in the 1950s. Each truck the company produces is custom-made to the customer’s specification.
The company’s reach is so broad that it has a fire truck on every continent, including Antarctica.
In addition to its Wisconsin plants, Pierce also has facilities in Bradenton and Clearwater, Florida.
For more information on the company and to apply for a position, visit their website.
Reach Jelissa Burns at 920-226-4241 or [email protected]. Follow her on Twitter at @burns_jelissa or on Instagram at burns_jelissa.