BESSEMER, AL (WBRC) - The news that Amazon is delaying the opening of its fulfillment center in Bessemer may not be all bad if you’re looking for a job.
We found several reasons why this delay may actually help you make yourself a better candidate for these jobs if you take the advice of recruiters who’ve already helped staff these kinds of sites.
The metro Nashville area already has about 2,500 Amazon employees working at a fulfillment center and now is preparing for a big distribution hub to come to town, so we asked the folks who helped recruit and train those workers what you should expect if you want to work at the new center in Bessemer, and it starts with a comfortable pair of shoes.
“You’re going to be doing a lot of walking, pulling orders from their big industrial warehouse,” said Brandon Bond with the Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development.
As in 4-5 miles a day, but it’s not all bad.
“A lot of work, a lot of overtime, but the people that enjoy doing that, their day goes by quick because you’re constantly moving, constantly doing something,” Bond said.
Bond also says having any kind of warehouse or logistics experience is a big plus if you’re applying for a management job, but even if you don’t, don’t sell yourself short.
“If you have something that can identify ‘this person’s a hard worker,’ that seems to be what the recruiters are looking for,” Bond said. “Doesn’t necessarily matter if you’ve been in a warehouse for five years.”
“We understand the demand is here in our area, but what we’re lacking is the qualified trained candidates,” said Dr. Tamara Payne, Director of Career and Learning Services at Jefferson State Community College.
“[The delay] gives them time to prepare themselves for the jobs when the jobs are open,” Payne said.
One place to start is earning an MSCC certificate through free classes at Jeff State.
“It’s a national certification, and once you finish your training program, which is a free training program, you end up with a national credential that’s recognized by Amazon, Shipt, and local trucking companies because it’s an industry credential,” said Payne.
She says Alabama’s community college system has already shifted its training programs to prepare workers for these jobs.
“We want these companies in Alabama, and we want them to stay. And in order for them to stay, we have to provide a surplus of candidates. In order to get them a surplus of candidates, is to train them to where they’re not going elsewhere to other states to find them,” continued Payne.