Harbor Freight Tools, a retailer providing a variety of tools, automotive supplies, and home improvement items, opened a new store in Paintsville last month and Big Sandy Community Action Program’s Career Services team helped them to connect with strong candidates for employment and get them ready to start their new jobs.
In coordination with Eastern Kentucky Concentrated Employment Program (EKCEP) and Kentucky Career Centers, BSACAP’s Community Action Career Services team assisted the company in finding, hiring, and onboarding employees in time for the grand opening.
Harbor Freight connected with BSACAP’s Employer Account Representative who learned about the company’s local employment needs and expectations.
In order to ensure that the company was able to open the Paintsville store on time, BSACAP advertised for and then hosted a job fair at the Country Music Highway Museum. Over 200 local jobseekers were able to meet with company representatives and participate in on-the-spot interviews. Career Advisors ensured the event moved smoothly by assisting jobseekers with registration and paperwork.
Community Action Career Services Manager Erica Ash said, “The central goal of our work is developing the local economy. So we want to help our clients through the hiring process from start to finish. We are working to help people access the education and training they need to be strong employees and then helping them connect to employers. And employers know they can reach out to us when they are looking for strong candidates to work for them and when they need help with planning for their growing businesses.”
After a busy and successful job fair, the store’s new hires needed to complete begin their training; however, work was still being completed on the store’s interior and everyone needed to stay on schedule.
After learning of the store’s needs, BSACAP was able to arrange for Store Manager Billy McGuire to conduct the computer-based portion of the onboarding process at the Paintsville Community Action office. By providing the employer with a conference room and computers, along with internet and phone access, BSACAP ensured that the new area business was able to open the store on time and with 40 new employees.
Mike Howell, Executive Director of BSACAP said, “This company offered 40 new jobs to local people who will be paid over the minimum wage and who have opportunities to earn bonuses. We need to see more employers moving into the area who are ready to pay better wages. It is wonderful to that people are setting up shop in our area and we want to support them any way we possibly can.”
BSACAP’s Community Action Career Services are made available to jobseekers and employers through the Workforce Innovation and Opportunities Act (WIOA).