Labor survey attracts hundreds

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 10, 2000

More than 300 people, some from as far away as Mobile, showed up for the first day of the labor survey being conducted by the London, Ky., based Image Entry in association with Butler County and the City of Georgiana. The survey will conclude Saturday at 1 p.m.

Photo by Derek Brown

Job seekers from as far away as Mobile lined up Thursday at the former PrideCraft building in Georgiana to participate in a labor survey for the London, Ky., based Image Entry corporation which is currently considering opening its newest location here in Butler County.

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Image Entry, which employs approximately 1,100 people in Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee, was recently awarded the contract for personal income tax processing for the state of Alabama. Company officials say the new facility in Alabama will not only help support that contract, but also other clients the company has in the region.

Image Entry President and CEO Bill Deaton said a labor survey is the first step in trying to determine the depth of the labor pool in Butler and surrounding counties.

"Our purpose is to try and understand the labor force available and what the skill set of that labor force is," Deaton said. "This way we can try to match the jobs we need done to the people that will be doing it."

On Thursday, April 27, company officials processed more than 300 survey forms from potential job applicants from throughout the area. Butler County Commission for Economic Development Director Ricky McLaney said he was pleased with the turn out.

"This survey is extremely important to this area and the community has really turned out to support the effort," McLaney said. "We have promoted and advertised this project across a seven county area and participation on the first day has been excellent."

During the survey, participants filled out a brief questionnaire that gave company officials an overall look at the work history and general skills of each person. Participants were asked to give the names of their last three employers, what type of education or special training they might have, and what type of work they have done in the past. After filling out the questionnaire, participants watched a short video about the company while they waited to speak with company officials.

Interviews were given to three people at a time to answer any questions participants might have.

Teresa Miller, recruitment coordinator for Image Entry, along with several other representatives, met with potential candidates to explain the types of jobs that could be available if the company chooses Butler County as its newest location.

Miller explained that jobs in data entry will constitute the bulk of the jobs at the facility, but there will also be work available in management, supervision and mailroom. There will also be positions available for fork lift operators.

Miller said the pay scale for potential positions with Image Entry has yet to be determined and indicated wages will be competitive with other employers in the area. She also said the company offers a comprehensive benefits plan which includes health, dental and life insurance plus nine paid holidays per year, sick leave, paid vacation, a 401K plan and profit sharing. Miller said the company also offers incentive plans based on production and quality performance.

Miller said she and the other officials visiting the area will compile a profile of the area's available work force from the survey forms they receive, and then return to the area within a few weeks to interview potential candidates on a one-to-one basis.

If Butler County is selected to be the new home of Image Entry's Alabama facility, officials say the 23,000 square foot facility will be operational by July, with approximately 25 employees at the start. The number of employees is expected to grow to 200 within 18 months of opening.

The labor survey will continue from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, April 29.