IBM is hiring manufacturing and maintenance workers at its Vermont chip-making plant in response to strong consumer demand for cell phones and DVDs using IBM electronic components. The new hires will push total employment at the Essex Junction plant to about 5,000.IBM has filled 126 of the spots already but as of yesterday said 114 additional positions had yet to be filled, according to a local-TV news story. And those numbers, while modest, reflect continued rising demand that has convinced IBM to accelerate its hiring plans.
"When we talked about hiring in June we thought we would need only about 50," an IBM spokesman said in the article. "As we've looked ahead we've realized that the number is over 200 and right now we have openings for over 100."
The report said the Vermont chip-making plant had 8,500 workers in 2001 but layoffs and other factors have reduced that number to just under 5,000. And the IBM spokesman also noted that, as is the case with most jobs in this high-tension global economy, the viability of these new positions will be evaluated on an ongoing basis:
IBM says the new jobs carry only a one to three year guarantee for now but could become longer-term depending on the economy.
"It certainly is a good sign in the sense that you know when we started the year where the economy was in general there really was no hiring and there were cutbacks," Couture said. "Certainly the work is coming back in. So we're optimistic. We'll see where it goes."
The article said this link offers information about how to apply for the positions.